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A view of Tallinn

Estonia celebrates 30 years since independence restoration

Estonia celebrates 30 years since independence restoration

Socks in the colours of the national flag will be gifted to babies born after 20 August at Tartu University Hospital

On 20 August, 1991 at 11.03 p.m., the Supreme Council of the Republic of Estonia officially severed the ties of the Estonian SSR with the Soviet Union. With 69 votes in favour, the Resolution on the National Independence of Estonia was adopted and the independent state, proclaimed on 24 February, 1918 was restored.

Tomorrow Estonia celebrates the 30th anniversary of this historical event with a variety of ceremonies and activities across the country. The speakers of the Parliaments of Latvia, Lithuania, Iceland and Poland and the President of the European Parliament will be guests of the events dedicated to the jubilee, ERR informs.

Flag raising and concert celebrating female courage

On Friday, the festivities will begin at Toompea in Tallinn with a flag raising ceremony and end with a festive concert "The Spirit and the Power of Woman" from 3 p.m. in the Governor's Garden. With this concert, 30 female musicians of Estonia and the Academic Male Choir of Tallinn University of Technology honour Estonia’s freedom. The concert is dedicated to the courage of Estonian women, who have carried their households and the entire nation through thick and thin over the years.

Singing Revolution

Using song as a political weapon is an Estonian specialty. During the music days in Tartu in May 1988, the song cycle of Alo Mattiisen was performed at Tähtvere Song Festival Grounds, becoming the symbolic banner of the Singing Revolution.  

On 9-13 June 1988, at the peak of the independence drive, Tallinn hosted the so-called Night Song Festivals where about  100,000 mostly young people sang national songs while dancing and waving blue-black-white flags. The explosive event inspired Estonian activist and artist Heinz Valk to coin the term Singing Revolution.

Family reunion

As part of the festivities, on 21 August a free “Family Reunion" event will take place at Tallinn Song Festival Grounds. There will be sports and entertainment options for family members of all age groups, including a children's area, sports area, and a street food alley.

The fest will be capped by a concert in the evening featuring popular Estonian pop rock bands Traffic, 2 Quick Start and the Lithuanian band The Roop, which represented Lithuania at this year’s Eurovision Song Contest. The gates will open at 1 p.m., and the event is supposed to end at 11 p.m.

Participation is possible only with either a certificate for a full vaccination cycle, or a negative PCR test result not older than 72 hours, or a negative rapid antigen test certification done in less than 48 hours before entering the event area. Rapid testing will be available at the venue. People under the age of 18 do not have to present any of the above proofs of safety against COVID-19 infection.

Warm socks to newborns

Away from the pomp of official ceremonies, small but endearing gestures are giving the Restoration of Independence Day a special value. One such example is the gift of blue, black and white winter socks to newborn babies at Tartu University Hospital. The socks were knitted by members of the Tampere Tartu Society during the coronavirus pandemic and will be given to babies born at the clinic after 20 August.

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