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SLOVENIA: 1st and 2nd May - International Labour Day

Polona Zalokar 2007-04-29

Preparations for the bonfire
Image:Polona Zalokar
Preparations for the bonfire

Slovenes tend to be ( or at least we think we are) working people. That is why the celebration of the labour day has been prolonged and lasts two days in Slovenia. Since this is an international holiday no further description is necessary.

Nevertheless, there are certain characteristics of celebrating the international labour day in Slovenia.

Firstly, on 30th April bonfires are lit on hills and in valleys around the whole country
. People celebrate, dance and have fun. Snacks and drinks are almost always offered. Every village usually lights at least one bonfire. The preparations for the bonfire take quite a long time because the fire has to be preserved until dawn. The reason why we light bonfires goes back to the times when Turks used to invade Slovenia and our people warned and so informed their neighbours about them by lighting bonfires on top of hills.

Bonfire at night

Bonfire at night
Image:Polona Zalokar
Bonfire at night

Preparing the maypole

Preparing the maypole
Image:Tadeja Kosovel
Preparing the maypole

Secondly, maypoles are positioned a few days before the celebration of the international labour day.

Villages usually compete which one has the highest and the best decorated maypole..

photos: Tadeja Kosovel, Mlaj-Jože, Jože Petrak Zajc.


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