17th International Folklore Festival of the Czech Army “The Rožnov Valaška”
12 to 14 June 2009, Rožnov pod Radhoštěm
Valaška – the emblem of this festival – is a distinctive feature of the Wallachian folk culture: a light hatchet on a long shaft, used in the past as a versatile tool (axe, weapon, hammer, walking stick) mostly by shepherds, and still used as a prop in traditional men´s dances. It was originally intended as an opportunity for meeting of children´s and adult folk ensembles associated with different units and facilities of the Armed Forces fo the Czech Republic. In 1999 it icluded groups of historical fencing. The ingenious dramaturgy of the festival, complete with skirmishes between historical swordsmen and both historical and contemporary uniforms, attracts thousands of visitors every year. The program always features the outstanding Military Artistic Ensemble Ondráš from Brno, which also cooperates in the overall organization of the festival.
Among the many attractions of the town of Rožnov pod Radhoštěm particularly worth mentioning is the open-air muzeum of Wallachian rural architecture, founded in 1925, the nearby Radhošť mountain with a statue of the pagan god Radegast and a sculpture of the Christian missioners St Cyril and St Methodius, and the architectural complex Pustevny on the Radhošť ridge with beautiful structures by the Slovak architect Dušan Jurkovič.
More information at www.roznov.cz.