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8ο Folklore Dance Festival “Diamantis Palaiologos” 7-8-9 July 2023

A festival that has grown into an institution. Dancing, fun, passion, tradition, music, guided tours, seminars, parallel activities, shows, parties and so much more in store for you this July on Skopelos!

After three years of hiatus and silence, it’s time to pick up where they left, once again, with #meraki. More than 600 dancers and 7,500 spectators will be meeting in Skopelos this summer.

The Folklore Dance Festival “Diamantis Palaiologos” is back in full swing for the eighth year and applications for participation just opened!

The civil non-profit organisation “Plegma” and its large team of volunteers, would like to invite dance groups from every corner of Greece to apply for participation in the 8th Folklore Dance Festival “Diamantis Palaiologos”, which will be held in Skopelos from 07 to 09 July 2023.
Anyone interested to take part can review the terms and conditions and submit their applications online, on the festival’s website: https://www.dancefestivalgr.gr

The Folklore Dance Festival “Diamantis Palaiologos”, a member of the European and Word Folklore Festival Association and certified with the EFFE LABEL quality mark by the European Festivals Association, has established itself through the years as a vibrant institution of tradition and culture with international reach.

Over the course of this three-day celebration, Skopelos will tune in to the melodies and dances of different traditions and cultures, which will showcase their diversity, richness and depth through a series of dance performances, along with parallel activities, such as workshops, seminars, exhibitions, open rehearsals, parties, etc.

The Folklore Dance Festival “Diamantis Palaiologos” has won recognition in the Tourism Awards 2017 competition (SILVER award in the “festival” category) and in the Best City Awards 2016 competition (SILVER award in the “culture” category), It has also been the subject of academic research and studies by both Greek and foreign universities and presented as a case study at numerous academic conferences.

Info: https://www.dancefestivalgr.gr/| http://www.plegma.org

Youtube: Dance Festival Skopelos
Facebook: Dancefestival Scopelos
Instagram: dancefestivalskopelosgr

Boat strike

Ferries will stay in the ports across Greece during February 8-9 after the Pan-Hellenic Seamen’s Federation (PNO) announced a 48-hour strike in all ship categories. According to an announcement, the umbrella union of Greek seamen are demanding a revised collective labor agreement for 2023 with pay raises. The PNO is also protesting against uninsured labor and is calling for the establishment of a permanent system for the financial support of unemployed seafarers. The union is requesting for an increase in the monthly unemployment benefit to 650 euros for the unmarried and to 850 euros for married seamen, with an additional 150 euros for each dependent person, and free medical care for seafarers and their families. The strike will start from 06.01 in the morning of Wednesday, February 8 and will last until 06.00 in the morning of Friday, February 10. Travelers who have booked ferry tickets  February 8-9 are advised to check with their travel agents or contact local port authorities for further information. Source: https://news.gtp.gr/2023/01/24/ferry-travel-greek-seamen-announce-48-hour-strike-for-february-8-9/

Snow and no snow

Waking up this morning we discovered that it had snowed, as predicted, but fortunately not enough to cut us off from Skopelos town.

In our area, the Raches Glyfoneri area, the wind was blowing hard and the temperature stayed above zero with the result that a lot of snow dispersed and melted. We might get another blast later today and on the mountains like Palouki and Delphi the snow will, likely, remain longer.

Yesterday we had a long(ish) electricity cut and one very small one this morning. Wood lies ready for the fire place…

Winter?

So far winter on Skopelos has consisted of days with a lot of wind and some periods of rain.

This video is from a couple of days ago.

And then there was yesterday. A glorious afternoon on Limnonari beach and on the way back a view to Amarandos and Evia with snow topped mountains.

On the other side of the island Mount Athos with snow can be seen. Are we in for some snow too? The next days ahead will show is, as it always does.

Glorious and cake

Winter does not seem to touch Skopelos at the moment and we are having glorious days, sometimes with strong winds.
These photos are from today on the small beach at Joannis tou Kastri in Glossa.

As you probably know Greece celebrates the New Year with lots of cakes. Many organizations meet and talk about the New Year and what is being planned and people have a reason to see each other and socialize. Last week I went to two events.

The first one was organized by the various schools and the committees that help them. Present was the mayor and the junior minister of education Mrs. Zetta Makri. In the speeches they held promises were made to try and solve the housing problem for teachers (but also for doctors, police, fire brigade and port police) Secondly they announced that a new, more modern, high school will be built in Skopelos. Hopefully the school will be built soon and the housingproblems will be adressed.

A drive to Old Klima and Limnonari earlier in the week gave us sunshine and beauty.

And last but not least, tonight, the New Year’s cake of the Folklore and Cultural organization, was cut.


Many citizens were present and the choir of the organization gave a small concert. This could be the last cutting of a cake but maybe not….

Two

Two men were brave enough today and jumped into the water to catch the cross. At exactly 12 all the priests, from the church communities in Skopelos town, were finally present and the ceremony was held.

A lot of people were around and dressed up to the nines!

After the cross was caught the harbor police sounded their horns and everybody on the quay walked towards the coffeeplaces or a taverna to socialize further…

Work is progressing on the road to Glyfoneri beach. Several walls have been built and the road is wider in some places.

and the beach and the view are a beautiful as always. Tomorrow it is Theophania/Epiphany or Ta Fota. The Holy Theophany, also known as the Epiphany, the Celebration of the Lights, or ta Fota (the Lights) is held on January 6 and is one of the most sacred and holiest Feast Days on the Greek Orthodox Calendar. The most important tradition, which takes place amongst Greek Orthodox Churches worldwide is the blessing of the waters with the Holy Cross by a local priest. Priests will throw a Holy Cross into the sea or lake(usually with attached to a long ribbon) then the faithful jump into the water to try to find the Holy Cross. The person who retrieves the Holy Cross and returns it to the priest is said to be blessed for the year ahead. The ceremony on Skopelos will take place in the harbors on the island after the church ceremony so at least after 10.30 hours. Usually people are dressed up for the occasion and afterward, in Skopelos town the New Years cake will be cut. Many cuttings of New Years cakes will follow, well into January. Χρόνια πολλά !! Many shops and services will be closed tomorrow. On Saturday it is the nameday of everybody that is called Jannis, Ioanna, Janna, Jannoula. It is good to have a Jannis in your home because a Greek saying goes, a household without a Jannis is no household!

New roads

There are so many roads and paths on Skopelos. How can you know them all ?

I still find new roads and I keep using the old roads. Maybe that is a good intention for stepping into the New Year: hang on to old friendships, old habits but embrace the new friendships, the new adventures. It keep us on our toes and not knowing what is around the corner makes it more special.

A Happy and healthy New Year for everybody and keep walking!!!!!

The harbor of Agnondas is full these days with amateur fishermen. There are a lot of fish “around” and word travels fast here. So in a line along the quay stand these guys and they are boasting about what they have caught in the last few days, which bate is the best for which fish and other insights in the mysterious world of fishing… There are also quite a few cementblocks on that same quayside. Ready to be placed in the area where the harbor needs te be repaired, we think. The sunsets are still amazing from this harbor. You can keep shooting photographs but it is even better to just follow the changes of colors in sky.

Cherish

I cherish that we live on such a beautiful island. An island where most people know each other. Where people come together, in big numbers when times are hard. Where the saying; να χαίρεσε την οικογενεία σου (cherish your family) is said by so many people these days.

I cherish the fact that these days grown up children walk around the villages on the island and sing traditional Christmas songs for us. I cherish the communication between the readers of this blog and me. I cherish you! Merry Christmas and I hope that whatever you wish for, big or small, in 2023, will come true!! Daphne

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Saturday announced a 10-percent subsidy for every household’s food purchases to help counter the burden of inflation.
“From next February, the state will cover 10 percent of each household’s purchases for six months in supermarkets and food businesses (bakeries, pastry shops, fishmongers),” the prime minister told parliament before a vote on the 2023 state budget amid a pre-electoral atmosphere.
The measure would cost 650 million euros ($690 million), said Mitsotakis
Elections in Greece are scheduled by July 2023, but Mitsotakis has said they could be held in the spring.
Individuals will receive a maximum of 220 euros. For large families with several beneficiaries, the overall amount will be capped at 1,000 euros.
The measure is for households with an income of 24,000 euros per couple, with an additional 5,000 euros for each child.
Mitsotakis also said electricity and natural gas subsidies would remain in place.
“A total of more than eight billion euros will be allocated at the national level,” he said.
The 2023 state budget was approved Saturday, with 156 votes in favour out of a total of 299 votes. It is the first in 12 years to be drawn up outside a framework of bailout supervision or enhanced surveillance.
Greece emerged from financial aid plans in 2018.
But until earlier this year it remained under scrutiny by its creditors, the European Union and the International Monetary Fund, who closely monitored the promised reforms and the country’s finances.

Source:https://greekcitytimes.com/2022/12/18/greek-pm-kyriakos-mitsotakis-announces-10-food-subsidy-for-families-amid-inflation-woes/