A few years back one could easily say no Halloween does not exist in Osijek or Croatia for that matter. October 31 night remained quiet with nothing happening at all, in other words… another cold boring night in Osijek. In the years to follow more and more stores are starting to have widows decorated with the Halloween theme of skeletons and scary masks. The café bars have also fallowed the trend on the Halloween theme as well. Is Osijek and the rest of Croatia slowly catching on to Halloween?
Halloween for young adults
Halloween for many young adults in Osijek has become a party night with various clubs and café bars holding costume Parties. In the evening catching a tram, there were people actually dressed in costume, looking like something out of the movie? The older generation looking at the young adult dressed as Dracula can be completely shocking and did not know what to do. Dobra večer (Good evening) would break the ice but what to say next would be a mystery. They seemed just to shake their head not knowing what to say. With each year more places are picking up on the Halloween night as the place to be for young adults to have fun and dress up. With many newspapers in Osijek and the rest of Croatia letting party goers know of the latest Halloween party.
The commercial side of Halloween.
Osijek stores are now starting to see more costumes and decorations to sell. Larger chain store are opening up with many stores being part of the larger European Union.
The shopping malls have tried to have some fun with Halloween, but it is something that will take time through trial and error. Costume parade and prizes for best dressed is slowly catching on.
Movie theatres this year with some popular monster cartoons and action films did something that was fun. They invited their guests to dress-up in their favourite character to add to the experience of the movie. It’s not trick or treating in full spirit yet, but Halloween culture is becoming almost the entire month of October in the film industry.
What about the Children.
For many years the young staying home and do nothing but watching Halloween cartoons, had been the staple. (If the grandparents did not them from watching the Halloween shows. Sometimes however if the kids were caught the end result would be the grandfather simply change the channel to watch football.) The idea of trick or treat a few years back in 2015 felt worse than being a vacuum salesperson going and ringing the door. Often the lights would be out and no one answered…. However, a year later in 2016 things change to much surprise, with some young school kids actually got together and went trick or treat. The other similar event that takes place earlier in the year is called maškare (also known as Carnival.) For the children it’s almost like having Halloween twice a year. (The dentists may soon possibly be needing to hand out more toothbrushes instead of Halloween treats.)
Decorations have not gone to the extreme.
Some houses have put out some Halloween decorations, but the older neighbours seem to frown on it. (For various reasons) The young generation under the age of 40, are the ones that said time for a change and have fun. The good news is that they only have a pumpkin in the front yard or doorstep. The average house has not turned into a graveyard, nor has it giving way to looking like a horror movie film set.
The one plus side is that the cities of Croatia do not have the haunted houses or the zombie walks to spread fear throughout the streets. All of which can make Halloween a bit too far and scary for some. There is nothing worse than being dared or called chicken.
What will you be for Halloween this year, if you had the chance to have fun?
Inside Osijek takes a look at yesterdays grand event for the Paviljon Gradski Vrt (The city Garden Pavilion) with construction wrapping up. With a large number of Officials ranging from Politicians, the business sector, and other social circles/networks. To give the honors of the new Paviljon Gradski VRT were the Prime Minister Andrej Plenković, Mayor Ivan Vrkić, and Mayor Vladimir Šišljagić,and Damir Pejaković the current owner of the company “Patrinus from Osijek. The day was full of excitement as the weather was great for most of the day avoiding the rain that was later scheduled for the evening.
Construction over the past few months in front of the historic building that hosts the current Muzej Okusas has been ongoing. The space in front has been turning what used to be a parking lot into something for everyone to use. With new 23 lighting fixtures pedestrian paths and 10 benches turning into park space for the square in front of the Pavilion. With some eighteen new trees added to give shade for those hot summer days. This will be the perfect backdrop for more outdoor events as people will now be able to enjoy the new park
The Mayor Ivan Vrkić took part in the newly opened Pavilion in front of Pavilijona Gradski Vrt, wherein 1809 Osijek was proclaimed a free royal town. Mayor said in a brief statement to the media that the Pavilion is an attempt to revive the rich history of Osijek. However to be done as such in a modern and Fashionable way. The concept is conceived as a place for socializing, meeting up with friends and family, for all generations to enjoy strolling the grounds for years to come. The Museum building for temporary measures has set up a temporary parking lot in behind the building.
Pejakovic was pleased to announce that the recent environmental design was in accordance with the style “Osječki Schönbrunn” It will give more use of space for the citizens of Osijek to be used for various functions and activities. With so much history of this location, it was deserved that it be able for everyone to enjoy.
The pavilion was built in 1804 and five years later proclaimed a free royal town. Since then 200 years have passed with many things happening. A great fire in 1865 caused significant damage to the building and more devastation to the building again during the Homeland War. Since then the building sat in despair with long periods of decay. It was not until just recently the building has gone through a full restoration. What is more interesting to note “the gardens of the area was dated back to 1750 and considered one of Europeans oldest gardens.”
The day was held with plenty of entertainment to help celebrate the opening of the square. With a horse-drawn Carriage for the arrival of Dancers to the park. Historical style gowns were worn by the ladies given the grandeur of the event with gentlemen arriving in Suits and top hats from days long ago.
The public was treated to live music in front of Muzej Okusas. They were treated to fine food and drinks to celebrate the “ Paviljon Gradski Vrt” (Pavilion City Gardens)
The students of Music School of Franjo Kuhaća had its 4th-grade students from the Department of Contemporary Dance took part of the celebrations. The student's performances also included jazz music which was pleasant to add life to the opening ceremony.
The Paviljon Gradski Vrt will once again be part of future generations to come. Yesterday marks the return of the Pavilion city gardens as part of Osijek continuing revitalization of the city’s great culture known as the garden city in Croatia.
Photo source: https://www.facebook.com/pg/Muzej-okusa-196708267429873/photos/?tab=album&album_id=367602523673779
“Gezina Fišijada ’’
This past weekend in tvrđa on January 14th was the place to be for Inside-Osijek as it was a great competition for making fiš paprikaš or otherwise known as Fish stew. The black caldrons were hung over the open fires in Tvrđa as the smell lingered throughout the old fortress in Osijek. Taken place in front of a restaurant called Slavonska kuća (Slavonian house) on Firingerovoj Street. There is a lot of history about the restaurant Slavonian house as it was founded in 1994 by the late Geza Gudlin. The tradition continued by Tomislav Baric who helped organize the event as a memorial of the well-known man Geza Gudlin. Hence the naming event after him calling it “Gezina Fišijada ’’. What was different was there was a catch or twist as one well knows. This may come as a surprise for most Croatians as to win first place one would have to make the worst ever fiš paprika.
To all those that were not able to make it Osijek’s well known photographer and videographer was on scene to capture the essence of the event. Zoran Cindrić (Zoran Osijek)
There were a total of 50 or more registered teams at this year’s memorial of FIŠIJADA. It started all in the early morning on Saturday, as there was lots of cheer and good humor of joking around. The event attracted many people from different walks of life from soccer stars, athletes, musicians and politicians. With the classical sound of tambourines bands to entertain the competitors and the citizens of Osijek. Many patrons of the event had a chance to get a free taste of fiš paprika.
Why such an event:
The organizer Tomislav Barić and owner of Slavonska kuća (Slavonian house) explained the reason for holding the now popular event. This event was to honour a man best known as Geza Gudlina who was a legend to the city of Osijek. To remember a man in good spirits who made his mark on the River Drava. He was best known for his recipes and the way he prepared them. Such was his infamous fiš paprika. However Geza had tragically passed away 12 years ago.
The organizer Tomislav said "I do not know why the people would want to win this award for the worst fish as at Geza everything was upside down. And it would be a little bit different this year, Mr. General Ante Gotovina and Tomo Bralić from band “ Klapa Intrade” have sent us one big tuna which we will later roast and to share our citizens in honor of Gezi, general and Klapa Intrade. You knew Geza, as he would decide what was crucial for worst fiš? So I guess that's good. This would've been bad for him as he was the criterion (Standard judgement) for fish, it was his guess that the temperature and nothing more. "(Quote translated from source http://republika.eu/novost/60911/ekipa-roberta-spehara-osvojila-titulu-najgoreg-fisa)
In Osijek competitors had a chance to make their mark in the history of wininning first place for “Gezina Fišijada ’’What made this competition so unique is that in order to win you had to make the worse fiš paprika. For most Croatians to make the worst fiš paprika dish would be one sad day. It was all in good fun as many people gathered around to enjoy the sights and sounds of this worst cook off. Did we forget to mention the aroma and the distinct odor of fiš paprika that could be smelled almost a kilometer away? (Maybe a slight exaggeration.) Slavonia and Baranja gastronomy is known for its famous dish of fiš paprika that originated in Hungary.
In memory of Geza Gudlin founder of Slavonska kuća (Slavonian house)
located in Tvrđa Osijek.
Written by James B. Mac Donald
Photo/Videographer: Zoran Cindrić (Zoran Osijek)
For more information: https://www.facebook.com/pg/slavonskaku
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