Lithuanian capital of culture 2009 contest kicks off

All Lithuanian cities and towns can already file applications for the national contest Lithuanian Capital of Culture 2009. Plans are to allocate 300,000 litas to implement the best project, which will earn the title of Lithuanian Capital of Culture 2009. The contest is organised by PI Vilnius – European Capital of Culture 2009.

“With this competition we aim to rediscover and enliven cultural live in smaller Lithuanian cities and towns. Creative ideas can mature in any remote location. This year’s Lithuanian capital of culture Zarasai is good proof for this. United by the common idea, Zarasai community achieved excellent results in very short time: attracted many events of relevance to Lithuania to the isle on Zarasas Lake, arranged the successful culmination event “Culture like Living Water” and gained considerable attention from the media and top leaders of the state. We hope that the Zarasai example encourages Lithuanian cities and towns to become more involved in this contest. Moreover that the winner will receive three times as much funding than in 2008,” says Director of PI Vilnius – European Capital of Culture Elona Bajorinienė.

Lithuanian capital of culture competition has run since 2008. Participants included 39 cities and towns, which offered 57 projects. The panel of thirteen members announced Zarasai Lithuanian Capital of Culture 2008.

According to author of the project Daiva Šukštulienė, Senior Specialist for Culture at the Education Department of Zarasai Region Municipality, apart from the opportunity to make Lithuania aware of the new cultural space, the Zarasas Lake isle, and to create the location’s attractive image, the status of the first Lithuanian capital of culture helped the city to achieve its cultural goals as this year Zarasai was recognised a recreation site.

The national contest “Lithuanian Capital of Culture 2009” is open to all Lithuanian cities and towns except Vilnius. Applications are accepted from corporate entities only. On the regional level, Lithuanian capital of culture should seek the same goals which are defined for the programme “Vilnius – European Capital of Culture 2009”: turning the city into a nationally-known cultural centre with unique and recognisable identity and promoting cultural keenness of the population.

Elections of the Lithuanian capital of culture aim that the programme “Vilnius - European Capital of Culture 2009” not only makes Lithuanian capital known, but also paves new paths for inbound tourists to the country's other locations.

About Vilnius – European Capital of Culture 2009

The national programme Vilnius – European Capital of Culture 2009 covers the following areas:

  • Culture, art and public projects;
  • Marketing and communication actions in Lithuania and abroad;
  • Development of culture infrastructure projects.

Plans are that more than 700 culture, art and public events will be implemented next year.



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