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Sunday morning at 3, the clock jumps forward from 3 to 4 am. This means we have to cope with one hour less of sleep. It is going to be darker in the morning again but it will be dark later. Good luck with coping again!

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It is good that in times when things are tough people communicate better to get the word out so we know what we are up against. These messages come directly from the source and are aimed at the general public.

The Customs Office of Skiathos remains open. However, the way of working with the office has changed due to the corona virus. Those who need to visit the office in person, please contact the office prior to your visit. This way you can be sure to be helped correctly.

Phonecall: 24270-22510 (landline number) or +306987111546 (mobile number)
Email: tel.skiathou@2412.syzefxis.gov.gr or a.gravvani@aade.gr

Source: press release from Amalia Gravvani (Chief Customs Officer Skiathos)

Skopelos Deputy Mayor’s has decided (according to decision no. 1941 / 13.03.2020) to suspend visits by citizens in all public departments of the municipality including the municipal port police fund until 24.03.2020.
Citizens can make their requests by e-mail and can receive the required documents in the same way.
Only in case of emergency the public can visit the municipality.
Municipality telephone (0030) 24243-50101
Municipal port police fund (0030)24240- 22864 telephone or e-mail: lime58@otenet.gr

Source: press release from the vice-mayor of Skopelos Mr. Angelos Ksidaris

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view towards Loutraki

Mayor Stamatis Perissis would like to thank the following people after the successful operation of removing and detonating a mine from the second World war:

The people of the Naval Underwater Disaster Management team for their exemplary work, the General Secretary of the ministry of Civil Protection Mr Chardialis who from the day the first meeting was held on February 5, worked with us for one month and finally got this big problem fixed. Mr. Papakonstantinou and his team, from the national electricity company (ΔΑΔΗΕ) who were present and ready to restore any damage that was done to the network.

The head of the Regional Fire brigade who was present during the whole process, the Skiathos Port police, the chiefs and executives of the local fire, police, port police departments and the Health Center of Skopelos. Without them this operation could not have been executed. The vice mayors, the president of the municipal board, the councilors, the presidents of the local boards and the local councilors. Last but not least the inhabitants of the areas of Loutraki, Glossa and old and new Klima. We thank them for following all the instructions that were implemented for this day.

The mayor wants everybody to know that the operation was successful because when the municipality were told that nothing could be done (like in 2016, the reason was that underwater electricity lines were too close by the mine) the mayor and the municipality told them that they would raise heaven and earth to have the mine removed. Fortunately the secretary general of the Ministry of Civil Protection had a big sense of responsibility and they thank him very much. The mine is now a thing of the past.

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The Municipality of Skopelos informs that on Saturday 07-03-2020 from 10:00 am until sunset, in its port of Loutraki, a mine disposal operation, by a special unit from the Greek navy will take place.

The safety measures are as follows: all residents that are within a radius of 1000 meters both from the location of the mine as well as during the towing should be evacuated from the area.

In particular, residents should be removed from the areas Loutraki, Glystra, Agia Varvara, Katakalou, Kalamia, Armenopetra, Kolonaki, Vigla, Maridaki area, Tzaneti area, Koukounaria, Ptharakia, Atheato.

Most citizens should arrange their own transport but those that cannot must express this by telephone. If they cannot leave by themselves, transport vehicles from the Municipality will be next to the bus stop at Loutraki Port and will start driving at 7:00 am and will end at 09:00 am.

The gathering place for those that cannot stay with family or friends is the Glossa Community building. Here citizens can remain until the operation is completed.

Residents and professionals of the mentioned areas are asked to:
-Remove their cars as well as professional vans etc.
-Leave the windows of the house and other buildings open for preventive reasons in order to avoid damage due to impact wave or any unintentional explosion of ammunition.
-Store owners temporarily suspend working until the end of the mine-clearing operation.
-All vessels/ships should be removed from the port of Loutraki.

Citizens can be informed about the mine removal operation by calling 24240-33502 (Glossa community building), mobile.
6977796701 (Vice Mayor Mr. N. Vafinis) and 24243-50115 or 24243-50101
(Skopelos Town Hall).

Finally, the inhabitants of Loutraki, Glossa, Old Klima, New Klima/Elios that are within a radius of 2606 meters from the operation are invited to not do any outdoor work from the start until to finish of the mine-clearing operation.

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Mine removal

Outside the port of Loutraki, near the coast, a mine was discovered from World War II. This mine poses a big risk to residents and visitors. The Municipality of Skopelos and mayor Stamatis Perissis, realizing the seriousness of the problem, informed the Ministry of Civil Protection and in a joint meeting of the Ministry of Civil Protection, the Navy, the National Electricity Company, Skopelos harbor police and the mayor of Skopelos, it was decided to remove and neutralize the mine.

The plan to do this is for this Saturday, the 7th of March 2020. The mine will be removed and neutralized, providing the weather conditions are appropriate.

Please note:
A) All Loutraki residents have to leave Loutraki on Saturday morning 07/03/2020 at 7:00 am and move/stay with relatives in Glossa or in a place to be announced by the municipality. This announcement will be made before Saturday.

B) Disabled residents have to be transported by family or by vehicles (eg ambulances) and have to stay with family or in the place that will be announced by the municipality. This announcement will be made before Saturday.

More detailed information will be announced further in the week after a meeting of the local coordinating body and before Saturday.

(source: official press release from the municipality received by skopelosnews)

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Get silly

Today, is charred Thursday. It is really the first day of the Greek carnival period when people can start acting silly. I saw the owner of a bakery in a babydoll this morning and many more people on Skopelos will start dressing up from today.
A lot of cross dressing also takes place. Men is women’s clothes and women in men’s clothes.

Because of charred Thursday the meat that is being cooked/grilled will sometimes be overcooked on purpose, it is all part of the tradition. It is basically the last day of the period before Easter when meat can be consumed. Many people will start fasting and that sometimes means not only they don’t eat meat but eggs, milk, butter, oil too.

If you want to join in tonight with the crowd take a cork from a bottle, light it for a bit and once it has cooled off start painting your face. Go out tonight and visit one of the bars that are open. You might not recognize everybody but they all we be in a good mood. From today and the next few days dirty jokes will fly around and pranks are being played on friends. Groups of friends will visit houses tonight or roam the streets and will make a lot of noise.

On Sunday it is time for the Carnival event Trates/Τράτα/Τράτες. In Skopelos town around midday a τράτα will be built somewhere in the harbor. Watch out for that and after that the cultural organization will take the τράτα and will lead the procession with the other τράτες through the village. A group of friends are usually the ones that will built a τράτα. Last year there were 7 if I remember correctly. There will be a lot of smoke (the trates need to be able to sail) but it will be colorful, there will be singing, shouting and dancing. A designated captain will stop the crowd every once in a while and will start telling dirty jokes that the crowd responds to. Skopelitans that live in the area will come out of their houses and will serve drinks and snacks to the participants.

To better understand the meaning and the origins of the Trata I have again taken the quote of Isabel Demsey book Breath of madness on the isle of Skopelos.
http://www.biblionet.gr/book/156194/Dempsey,_Isabel/Breath_of_Madness_on_the_Isle_of_Skopelos:_An_Ancient_Rite_Endures

“It’s well known that the roots of Carnival spring from ancient festivals honoring Dionysus, the god of wine, madness and resurrection. The origins of the Trata, the ritual Skopelitan ship procession probably lie in the ancient ship procession of the Great Dionysia festival, which was introduced in Athens in the sixth century, BC.This festival was celebrated at the end of winter to insure the arrival of spring and the fertility of the vine and trees over which Dionysus presided. The festival was associated with the myth which tells us how Tyrrhenian pirates attempted to carry off Dionysus in their ship, but vines grew up around the mast and sail and the frightened pirates dove into the sea and became dolphins.

At the end of the walk through the village on Skopelos the trates/τράτες will be thrown in the sea at the end of the procession.

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Weird skies today

These photo’s are dedicated to the readers that are hit by the storms in England and other areas of Europe. We feel for you and hope things will get better. The sun will come out again.

Panormos

Adrines

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