Notting Hill Carnival in London

April 28th, 2017 | Destination: | Rubric: General, London, Events |

© Romazur/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Romazur/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Notting Hill Carnival is an annual event that has taken place since 1966 on the streets of Notting Hill, and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in London, each August over two days (the August bank holiday Monday and the preceding Sunday). It is led by members of the British West Indian community, and attracts around one million people annually, making it one of the world’s largest street festivals (others are the Carnival of Cultures in Berlin and the Summer Carnival in Rotterdam), and a significant event in British culture. In 2006, the UK public voted it onto the list of icons of England. Despite its name, it is not part of the global Carnival season preceding Lent. Professor David Dabydeen has stated: “Carnival is not alien to British culture. Bartholomew Fair and Southwark Fair in the 18th century were moments of great festivity and release. There was juggling, pickpocketing, whoring, drinking, masquerade — people dressed up as the Archbishop of Canterbury and indulged in vulgar acts. It allowed people a space to free-up but it was banned for moral reasons and for the antiauthoritarian behaviour that went on like stoning of constables. Carnival allowed people to dramatise their grievances against the authorities on the street… Notting Hill Carnival single-handedly revived this tradition and is a great contribution to British cultural life.” Bartholomew’s Fair was suppressed in 1855 by the City authorities for encouraging debauchery and public disorder. The roots of the Notting Hill Carnival that took shape in the mid-1960s come from two separate but connected strands. A “Caribbean Carnival” was held on 30 January 1959 in St Pancras Town Hall as a response to the problematic state of race relations at the time; the UK’s first widespread racial attacks, the Notting Hill race riots in which 108 people were charged, had occurred the previous year. The 1959 event, held indoors and televised by the BBC, was organised by the Trinidadian Claudia Jones (often described as “the mother of the Notting Hill Carnival”) in her capacity as editor of Britain’s first black newspaper The West Indian Gazette, and directed by Edric Connor; showcasing elements of a Caribbean carnival in a cabaret style, it “featured among other things the Mighty Terror singing the calypso ‘Carnival at St Pancras’, a Caribbean Carnival Queen beauty contest, the Trinidad All Stars and Hi–fi steel bands dance troupe and a Grand Finale Jump-Up by West Indians who attended the event.”   read more…

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

February 17th, 2017 | Destination: | Rubric: General, Sport, Events |

© flickr.com - John Fowler/cc-by-2.0

© flickr.com – John Fowler/cc-by-2.0

The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is a yearly festival of hot air balloons that takes place in Albuquerque, New Mexico during early October. The Balloon Fiesta is a nine-day event, and has over 500 balloons each year. The event is the largest hot air balloon festival in the world. The Balloon Fiesta began in 1972 as the highlight of a 50th birthday celebration for 770 KKOB Radio. Radio station manager Dick McKee asked Sid Cutter, owner of Cutter Flying Service and the first person to own a hot air balloon in New Mexico, if KKOB could use his new hot-air balloon as part of the festivities. The two began discussing ballooning, along with conversation and help from Oscar Kratz, and McKee asked what the largest gathering of hot air balloons to date had been. 19 balloons in England, Cutter replied. Kratz asked “Can we get 19 here?” Cutter agreed to try. He got commitments from 21 pilots, but bad weather kept some of them from arriving in time. The first fiesta ended up as a gathering of 13 balloons on April 8, 1972, sponsored by KKOB. The first event was located in the parking lot of the Coronado Center Shopping Mall with 20,000 spectators and with balloonists from Arizona, California, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada and Texas taking part. McKee, Cutter, and Kratz are the three men who had originally started the balloon races. The first fiesta incorporated a “Roadrunner-Coyote Balloon Race” (a “hare-and-hounds” race elsewhere in the world) with 1 balloon being the “Roadrunner” and the others being “Coyote” balloons (the “Roadrunner” balloon was actually emblazoned with likenesses of both Warner Bros. characters). The winner of the race – the “Coyote” that landed closest to the Roadrunner – was Don Piccard of the noted aerostation dynasty, flying a balloon of his company’s design and construction (his wife also placed in the race). This race has continued as part of the Balloon Fiesta today.   read more…

Bristol International Balloon Fiesta

June 24th, 2016 | Destination: | Rubric: General, Events |

© Bradleylewis/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Bradleylewis/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Bristol International Balloon Fiesta is held annually England. Teams from the UK and other parts of the world bring their hot air balloons to Bristol and participate in mass ascents where as many as 100 balloons may launch at a time. The event was first held in 1979 and is now one of the largest in Europe. It is common to have crowds of over 100,000 on each of the four days of the festival. It takes place in a large country estate Ashton Court. Mass launches are made twice a day, at 6am and 6pm, subject to weather conditions.   read more…

ART Cologne, the world’s oldest art fair

February 18th, 2015 | Destination: | Rubric: Museums, Exhibitions, Events |

© artcologne.de

© artcologne.de

Art Cologne is an art fair held annually in Cologne in Germany and was established in 1967 as Kölner Kunstmarkt. It is regarded as the world’s oldest art fair of its kind. The fair runs for six days and brings together galleries from more than 20 countries at the Cologne Exhibition Center. It is open to the public and attracts about 60,000 visitors.   read more…

The non-stop race Vendée Globe

February 8th, 2013 | Destination: | Rubric: Events |

Vendee Globe Race Route © NASA

Vendee Globe Race Route © NASA

The Vendée Globe is a round-the-world single-handed yacht race, sailed non-stop and without assistance. The race was founded by Philippe Jeantot in 1989, and since 1992 has taken place every four years. The 2012-2013 edition started Saturday, November 10, 2012.   read more…

2. World Fish Bun Day on May, 12

May 12th, 2012 | Destination: | Rubric: Events |

2. Weltfischbrötchentag am 12. Mai 2012 © Ostsee-Holstein-Tourismus e.V.

2. Weltfischbrötchentag am 12. Mai 2012 © Ostsee-Holstein-Tourismus e.V.

Today is the 2. World Fish Bun Day. The ostsee* is already looking forward again to the many visitors and fish stall owners, to worship the Fish Bun Day together. Special events are set up to celebrate and hail the fish sandwiches in some places of Schleswig-Holstein (Northern Germany). Lots of fun is waiting for you!   read more…

9/11 – 10th anniversary

September 11th, 2011 | Destination: | Rubric: Architecture, General, Living, Working, Building, Museums, Exhibitions, New York City, Events |

This image contains all of the names of those who perished in the World Trade Center on 9/11. The names are from the CNN September 11 archive. The names that are highlighted in orange are those of fire fighters and police who died in the line of duty. Photo: Dzeni

This image contains all of the names of those who perished in the World Trade Center on 9/11. The names are from the CNN September 11 archive. The names that are highlighted in orange are those of fire fighters and police who died in the line of duty. Photo: Dzeni

Meanwhile the re-building of the new Word Trade Center make great progress. The Twin Tower foot prints on Ground Zero together with a Cultural Centre will form the 9/11 Memorial Plaza / National September 11 Memorial & Museum, surrounded by the WTC Tower’s 1 to 7. The One World Trade Center Tower (Freedom Tower) will become the heart of the ensemble. After completition the tower will reach a height of 1776 feet (541.3 m – the hight is a reminder to the Declaration of Independence from 1776). At that time it will be the highest building in the Americas and will rank as the N° 3 of the tallest buildings in the world for a few years.   read more…

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