June 23, 2018 at 7 p.m. - 12 a.m.
“From national awakening until national re-awakening”
Our ancestors considered the Midsummer's Eve to be a mysterious and even a magical time, when the rules dominating in the earthly world are shaken up. Many believe that this is relevant also today.
For the 100th anniversary of the Republic of Estonia there is an extraordinary opportunity to travel through time on this day of miracles. You can make time leaps into important breaking points in the formation of our nation and country. In this way you can get into the time of national awakening, the period of forming the destiny of Estonia and in the middle of complicated events of 1998.
This evening begins at 7 p.m. with the procession of starting the bonfires. The meeting will take place at the main gate of the museum. Bonfires will be lit at Nätsi windmill, swing ground, village green and Kerase ground. Music, dance, good food and drink will accompany you everywhere!
You can enjoy music by: Ultima Thule, Seitsmes Meel, Jäääär, Kukerpillid, Suprjadki, Leigarid and Pritsu Brass. An evening full of experience awaits you! And who’s lucky will find a fern flower from the forest!
TIME OF NATIONAL AWAKENING
SECOND HALF OF THE 19TH CENTURY
During the second half of the 19th century the winds have changed. The foundation of different national associations, print publications and cultural strongholds is gaining ground. The song and drama society Estonia, newspaper Postimees and theatre Vanemuine are only few examples of this. Time of National Awakening was one of the first steps towards the independent Estonia.
Local people and visitors coming from far away have come together to the village green to celebrate the Midsummer Eve. The song and drama society Leigarid keeps old customs alive, by dancing around the bonfire and organising fun games. Buzz is heard from the crowd: the Committee of Alexander School has arrived to the party and they raise money for opening the first Estonian-language school. The general topic to talk about is also the railway reaching Tartu and the recently held second Song Festival there. But what do all these big changes mean to the peasantry?
Numerous ancient beliefs and customs are related to the shortest night of the year. In Roosta barn-dwelling village soothsayers await for the bold ones to tell their future.
Estonians cannot spend a Midsummer Eve without going to a sauna! Jüri-Jaagu sauna stove is already burning, the farmhand is making birch bath whisks and the girl is teaching how to make a ribbon band.
Children play yard is full of games and exciting things that delight younger and older ones.
DREAM ABOUT THE STATE OF ESTONIA
THE SUMMER OF 1918
Estonia is occupied in June 1918. Only few months ago, on 24 February an independence was declared. But already a day later German troops marched into Tallinn and the control went over to the German army. In the light of these events the First World War still continues on the Western front.
Nätsi windmill ground
Despite the German occupation, the general atmosphere is relatively peaceful in Estonia in June 1918. Fortunately there is no war activity on the territory of Estonia and everybody is keenly awaiting what the future will bring. Regardless the unclear time people have come together on the Midsummer Eve, Pritsu Brass brass band is playing and local members of the society are performing, there are games and dance. Some of the German soldiers have also come to the village party. But how do the local party people feel about this?
SECOND TIME OF NATIONAL AWAKENING
1988, THE SINGING REVOLUTION
During the Gorbachev era, the life in the Soviet Union became more free – harsh stagnation period ended and perestroika began. The Soviet Estonia was in the middle of changes. In 1988 the Phosphorite War continued and large national mass events with joint singing took place. By swinging the blue-black-white flags, once again the era of Estonians came around and the dream about the independence was born again.
The bands Seitsmes Meel and Ultima Thule are reviving memories of the desire of freedom of the 1980s on the stage of the Singing Revolution.
CELEBRATING THE BIRTHDAY OF THE REPUBLIC OF ESTONIA
Today we have to be thankful that we can enjoy the Midsummer Eve without worrying much. It is absolutely appropriate to celebrate this with the forever young band Kukerpillid who let people dance till the midnight, by playing songs from the period of 100 years ago to the nowadays.
The meeting of Dusk and dawn at 23.45 p.m.
Islands net sheds
Although nowadays it is possible to take a photo of a suitable view within few seconds, we often cannot capture the beauty of the moment. At the net sheds of the islands it is possible to look at the sea, taste some wine and let the creativity to fly high – here you can capture the beautiful moment by drawing. The band Jäääär gives you the inspiration.
Seto and Peipus-Russian grounds
Orthodox Setos, Old Believers at the Lake Peipus and many other nations living in Estonia celebrate the whitest night of the year on July 6 according to the Old (Julian) calendar. Ivan Kupala and the customs of the Midsummer Eve are introduced by the band Suprjadki and many others.
Kolu Inn is a place to rest your feet and taste good Estonian food.
Farms and other households
In Lau Shop, Kuie School and Sepa, Härjapea, Köstriaseme, Pulga and Sassi-Jaani farms visitors are welcomed by the ladies who introduce customs and traditions related to the Midsummer: how to prepare delicious Midsummer dishes, how to mow with a scythe etc.
Farms, Kuie School and Lau Shop are opened from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m.
- Free buses with signs “Eesti Vabaõhumuuseum / Open Air Museum” leave from Sokos Hotel Viru in the city centre at 18:00, 19:00, 20:00 and 21:00. The buses return to the city centre at 22:30, 23:30, 00:30; departures from in front of the museum. On-demand stop at Kristiine Keskus shopping mall on return route.
- Free special bus from Väike-Õismäe at 18:00 and 19:00. Back to Väike-Õismäe from the Open Air Museum at 23:15 and 00:15.
- By car: Drive from city center along Paldiski road. Turn right (look for the sign „Eesti Vabaõhumuuseum“) before you reach Rocca al Mare shopping mall. Drive along Vabaõhumuuseumi street to the gates of the museum. Free parking for museum visitors.
- Public transport: buses 21 and 21B leave Balti (central) Station and Vabaduse väljak in the centre of Tallinn and stop at the museum’s main gate (stop Rocca al Mare). Or take bus 22, 42, 43 from the city centre, get off at the Zoo stop. The museum is a 15 minute walk away along the seaside road. Back to the city centre takes bus nr 41 or 41B. For public transport timetables, visit soiduplaan.tallinn.ee