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The Ancient Festival of Maslenitsa

Belgorod State University students led the celebrations with a play called 'Maslenitsa Is Coming!', and traditional sports, dancing and games

The Khorkina Sports Centre was the focal point for the sports, that included ancient wrestling, modern 'Bumperball', pillow fights, tug of war, sack racing and kettlebell racing. For the less active, there were skits, poems recitals, songs, and traditional dances. Dr Svetlana Ostrikova, Vice-Rector for Education and Youth Policy, hosted the event, and gave a speech about the history of the holiday, its origins as a Spring festival in Slavic pre-history, its adoption by the church as an Easter celebration, and its significance for Slavs across the world. Of course, there was plenty of food and drink for the participants, who were entertained by the 'Joy' dance ensemble, led by Irina Desyatnichenko. The festival was rounded off with the burning of the 'Winter Guy', as the students danced around the fire.

 Translated by I P Turner, Centre for Foreign Language and Academic Writing

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