NEWS ARCHIVE: DECEMBER 2008

December 31, 2008 Website "Naviny.by" 47,000 people have visited Grandfather Frost in Belovezhskaya Pushcha in December

The BelaPAN News Agency learned from the residence of Belarusian Grandfather Frost in Belovezhskaya Pushcha that 47,000 people have visited it in December. A peak of visits has fallen on December 26. 4,411 people have come to see the main New Year's character of the country in that day.

On December 31, Grandfather Frost by tradition has invited the employees of the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" with their children to visit him.

In total Grandfather Frost has met about 108,000 tourists from both Belarus and a number of other countries in 2008. 384,000 tourists from 70 countries all over the world have visited the residence of Belarusian Grandfather Frost for five years, since December of 2003 to open it.

Larisa Shiganova, BelaPAN
December 30, 2008 Website "Belarusian Green Portal" The scientific department of the National Park "Pripyatskiy" to reduce half

This is one of the results from changing location for the Nature Protection Institution which moved from town of Turov of the Zhitkovichi district to village of Lyaskovichi of the Petricov district.

Four employees of the scientific department had to leave the service as they had no opportunity to move from Turov to Lyaskovichi where the administration of the National Park is now placed. That is the New Year's "gift" granted for two laboratory assistants and two researchers of the "Pripyatskiy" who became unemployed.

The former office building of the former Pripyatskiy Reserve in Turov is thin as there is only the eco-educational centre with a few staff, the museum and the souvenir-stall.

Let's remind the administration of the National Park "Pripyatskiy" has moved this year to another area, to the village of Lyaskovichi at the left bank of the Pripyat River. The administration is now 50 kilometers far from the managed territories (!).

A. Ibragimova
December 22, 2008 Website "Photobelta.by" Photo-news: A bull is a symbol of the coming 2009

click to enlarge in the new window click to enlarge in the new window click to enlarge in the new window
The description
A bull is a symbol of the coming 2009. The European bison is the heaviest and biggest mammal living on the European continent and the last European species represented wild bulls.

The photos show a bison in Belovezhskaya Pushcha.
Photo by Vladimir Cheberkus, BelTA.
December 22, 2008 Website "The State Border Committee of the Republic of Belarus" An unusual frontier crossing to open in Belovezhskaya Pushcha (VIDEO)

click to open the bigger picture. That big picture has taken from http://www.gazeta.lv/story/8269.html
It is not necessary to get a visa for crossing the frontier. It is not necessary to show the passport and to open the luggage for examination. It is simply enough to think of a secret desire.

Sovereign of winter blizzards will order the frontier guards in the night between December 31 and January 1 to ensure a New Year to cross the state border from East to West unchecked. This tradition has arisen last year when Grandfather Frost was handed with a green beret (soldier's cap) and a diploma to ordain him into frontier guards. The manor of the fantastic hero is situated inside of the state border zone and Grandfather Frost will supervise the unchecked crossing the New Year will do. This frontier pole has also another destination. Children visiting Grandfather Frost trust him to give short letters with their precious desires.

Click to see the video on the page here.

December 17, 2008 Website "The Embassy of the Republic of Belarus in Russian Federation" Belovezhskaya Pushcha welcomes this year’s 200,000th visitor

The Belovezhskaya Pushcha National Park has welcomed as many as 200,000 tourists this year. Veronika Manuilo, 10, of Gorodnaya village, Stolin District, Brest Oblast is the 200,000th visitor and winner of the special prize, a Vityaz television, the official news agency BelTA quoted the park’s managers as saying.

Two hundred thousand visitors is certainly a weighty figure for the national park. Belovezhskaya Pushcha received some 100,000 visitors per year as recently as five years ago. The advent of Father Frost, children’s and grown-ups’ favorite, has given the ancient forest a popularity boost in recent years.

The Pushcha has been “sold out” this December. Everyone is trying to meet Father Frost in hopes they will get what they wish on the New Year’s night. Starting with the first days of December, Father Frost, Santa’s eastern Slavic counterpart, has been receiving up to 3,500 tourists per day, with the number expected to exceed 4,000 starting around December 20.

Children from every corner of Belarus, as well as Ukraine, Russia and the Baltic States are rushing to Belovezhskaya Pushcha to see Father Frost. Three groups of schoolchildren from Kovel, Ukraine and one from Vilnius, Lithuania are expected to join the young Belarusian visitors within days.

Father Frost’s estate, which will turn five years old this New Year’s Eve, has seen more than 340,000 tourists from 70 countries. The 15-hectare estate lies deep in the forest, in a glade where European bison come to feed in winter. It consists of Father Frost’s carved wooden house, his granddaughter Snow Maiden’s house, the Treasure House and many other attributes of the fairytale character. But the 120 year old, 42 meter tall spruce is no doubt the estate’s chief attraction. It is Europe’s tallest natural New Year tree.

The estate opens its new season with a new look. The new additions to the site are the beekeeper’s house, the museum of traditional life, the mill that “grinds away” bad deeds and the Treasure House. New characters were added to the wood carving gallery. The estate’s lighting pattern underwent a complete revamp for the New Year. Hundreds of bulbs now grace not only the buildings but the wooden figures, the trunks and crowns of the trees, and surely the New Year spruce which from now on will sparkle with ten thousand lights.

BelTA
-------
Translated by Alexander Sukhoverkhov
December 16, 2008 Website "V OTPUSK.RU" Popular Tourist Route Reopens in the Poland’s Bialowieza Forest

Ôîňî BP-21
Photo by "BP-21"
A popular tourist route in a tract of woodland called Staraya Bialowieza (Old Bialowieza) has been reopened.

The route takes visitors along the Road of Royal Oaks and is redesigned with the physically-challenged in mind. It was one of the first educational eco-paths in Poland and remains one of the most loved ones by tourists travelling to the Bialowieza Forest. The route was closed in 2005 after the oldest tree named after King August the 3d, whose moniker was “Fat”, fell. That incident prompted efforts to make the eco-path safe for the tourists, according to Podroze.onet.pl.


New signs were placed along the route.
// bialowieza-info.eu
Now the path passes not through, but close to a grove of oaks. Informational signs for the eyesight-challenged and blind visitors are installed along the way to ensure safety. A new open-air eco-museum may be opened in Staraya Bialowieza in future.
-----------------------
More information about “The Road of Royal Oaks” can be found in Polish here or here
-------
Translated by Dmitry Kosach

December 13, 2008 Website "Etsy.com" Forest at Daybreak Original Painting


Description

The early morning sunlight is filtered through the trees of the Bialowieza forest in Poland. Warm light illuminates the tree roots and underbrush, as if it were the gateway to the beating heart of this primeval woodlands. Inspires fairy tale thoughts of wild mushrooms, wolves, leaf-strewn secrets. It's is also a nice way to celebrate one's Polish heritage.

This is an original painting 8" x 10" acrylic on paper. Signed and framed in a simple black frame.
December 12, 2008 "Vecherniy Brest" (The Evening Brest) newspaper A George Kartsev's historical review "Belovezhskaya Pushcha. 1382-1902" to reissue in the original language

The book in circulation of 2,000 copies has information about the unique primeval forest, its flora and fauna, climate, imperial hunting since XIV century. This is one of the best editions which will appear for sale on the eve of the 600th anniversary since first nature protection in Belovezhskaya Pushcha. A small part of the issue is planned to make with morocco binding to give as a gift. The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" and the Republican Fund of Nature Protection financed this project.

The "VB" Information Service
December 11, 2008 Website "The Second National TV-Channel (ONT)" At once two unusual cases of moonshine producing were revealed by militia inspectors

Since first colds appeared, very enterprising peasants warm themselves by "hot" drinks and do not allow others to freeze.

A villager has opened a mini-factory on vodka manufacturing right now in Belovezhskaya Pushcha. To make wash, he has dug out a pit of the size of over hundred square meters and produced moonshine by tons. After he was arrested, he assured in the militia office that it was done only for his own use. By the way, tipsy animals have helped to find one more bootlegger, this case in a Lithuanian wood. A hunter has met an elk as much drunk as to be on last legs. Other animals also behaved strange. The police investigated that moonshine waste products caused their intoxication.
December 10, 2008 Website "Club.FOTO.ru" Photo: A site by the Lesnaya River

An author's comment:
This is a site by the Lesnaya River. There are lots of small rivers in Belarus while this one is famous as it originates in the forests of Belovezhskaya Pushcha. This scene was shot two years ago, on November 15th, 2006.

Alexander Ahukovskiy

December 10, 2008 Website "OZ.BY" A letter-envelope called "Winter in Belovezhskaya Pushcha". 2003


December 09, 2008 Website "Photobelta.by" Photo-news: Snow Maiden returns to Grandfather Frost’s residence in the Belovezhskaya Pushcha

click to enlarge in the new window click to enlarge in the new window click to enlarge in the new window click to enlarge in the new window
click to enlarge in the new window click to enlarge in the new window click to enlarge in the new window click to enlarge in the new window
Description
On December 6, the holiday "Snow Maiden Meeting" was held in the manor of Grandfather Frost in the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha". Following the annual tradition the holiday with songs, dances and round dances in the Grandfather Frost's residence was held for the kids.

A Grandfather Frost is on the picture.
Photo by Vladimir Cheberkus, BelTA.
December 08, 2008 Website "BELTA" Belarus partakes in Moldova charity fair

Belarus was presented by one of the largest exhibition pavilions at the 12th winter charity fair that opened in Chisinau on December 6, BelTA informs.

The pavilion prepared by the embassy of the Republic of Belarus in Moldova was decorated by an exposition of BelTA photos Belarus Today.

The fair displayed a wide range of consumer goods, Belarusian foodstuffs, souvenirs. The exhibition visitors were able to taste Narochansky bread and the Belarusian national beverage – Belovezhskaya bitters. The trading show also offered Belarusian towels, crystal, products of the Vitebsk Confectionary Vitba, other food and industrial companies of Belarus.

The winter charity fair has been organized by the International Women Club of Moldova. Partaking in it were accredited in Moldova embassies and international organisations that showcased traditional dishes of the countries, crafts, Christmas souvenirs and gifts. The majority of the exhibits have been made by the embassies and foreign missions.

The participants were able to exchange the experience in the area of traditions, the national cuisine and culture.
December 08, 2008 Website "TUT.BY" An artillery shell of the last war times was found out in Belovezhskaya Pushcha

In the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha", when conducting excavations to reconstruct the zoo enclosures, a 45-millimeter artillery shell of the times of the Great Patriotic war was found. The BelTA reporter learned this from the Department of Information and Public Relations at the Regional Department of Internal Affairs of the Brest Regional Executive Committee.

The shell was taken out from the Pushcha and was neutralized on a special range, and then the scheduled works on the zoo enclosures' reconstruction were continued.

Olga Kobyak, BelTA
December 08, 2008 "Komsomolskaya Pravda" (The Komsomolskaya Truth) newspaper 17 years ago: Dissolution of Soviet Union Declared

On December 8, 1991, the leaders of Belarus, Russia and Ukraine has signed the agreement on a Commonwealth of Independent States. It was done in the governmental residence located in Belovezhskaya Pushcha.

So-called the Belovezhskaya agreements have put the end of the history of the Union of the Soviet Socialist Republics lasted 69 years. This declaration was made by the leaders of the same Soviet Republics which were initiators to found it in 1922.

Vsevolod Almazov

December 05, 2008 Website "The Grogno City Blog s13" Grodno Oblast preparing to mark 600 years of Belovezhskaya Pushcha

Belovezhskaya Pushcha this month marks 600 years of nature reserve conditions. The date is also included on UNESCO’s List of Memorable Dates. Although only the smaller part of the ancient forest is located within Grodno Oblast, the oblast government has a lot of work to do.

Work is currently underway to make improvements to the communities belonging to Svislotch District that are located within the boundaries of the Belovezhskaya Pushcha National Park. The oblast government has allocated one billion Belarusian rubles (currently around $450,000) for construction of "agritowns" (modernized rural communities built under the 2005-2010 National Rural Revival and Development Program) in the Pushcha villages of Tikhovolya and Dobrovolya. In Dobrovolya in particular, a water supply system was installed and a section of the road between the Villages of Brovsk and Tikhovolya, paved with asphalt.

The renovation of many establishments providing public services will be completed next year: the village arts venue, school/kindergarten, outpatient clinic and shopping/public services center. There are plans to create a recreation area near a picturesque lake in the vicinity of Romanovtsy.

Belovezhskaya Pushcha is the largest remnant of the primeval plain forest that covered Europe in prehistoric times. The vast forest has gradually been cut down, and the Belovezhskaya Pushcha area is the only one where a large woodland has remained relatively intact. The present-day forest is divided into two parts by the border between Belarus and Poland. The Belarusian part of the old-growth forest, the Belovezhskaya Pushcha National Park, occupies an area of 163,505 hectares, with some 20 percent of it the strictly protected zone (core area) where any non-conservation activity is forbidden. In 1992, UNESCO included Belovezhskaya Pushcha on its World Heritage List. In 1993, the national park was designated as a biosphere reserve and in 1997, awarded a Diploma by the Council of Europe.
-------
Translated by Alexander Sukhoverkhov
December 04, 2008 Website "Tourism in Belarus" Next year Belovezhskaya Pushcha will celebrate 600 years since first nature protection

The first common Polish – Belarusian presentation of tourism in Belovezhskaya Pushcha for the British mass-media took place in November 2008 in London. The presentation was organised by the National Tourism Agency of Belarus and the Organisation of Tourism in Poland. The management of the national parks governing the Bialowieza Forest and tourist organisations of the both countries (Belarus and Poland) have participated in the presentation.

We shall note that this presentation was organised in the exhibition stand of the Republic of Belarus during a largest international tourism fair World Travel Market.

The design of our country’s stand mentioned the jubilee of Belovezhskaya Pushcha.

Besides a publicity leaflet in Russian, English and Polish will be published in 2008. It tells about the tourist potential of the Belarusian part of this unique natural complex, the only natural habitat of the bison in Europe.

The Ministry of Sports and Tourism and the National Tourism Agency have created working internet projects:
"Tourism in Belovezhskaya Pushcha";
The trip-presentation to "Belovezhskaya Pushcha".

The official website of Belovezhskaya Pushcha: http://npbp.brest.by/.

P. S. We invite you to discuss the following up-to-date issues concerning the organisation of tourism in Belovezhskaya Pushcha on our forum:

- Who is the best target audience of Belovezhskaya Pushcha and why?
- What shall be done in order to attract more tourists to Belovezhskaya Pushcha?
- What shall we change in Belovezhskaya Pushcha first of all? Suggest five top-priority changes.
- The most creative are invited to participate in the creation of a video promoting Belovezhskaya Pushcha for an international TV-channel.
-------
Translated by Olga Tumar
December 01, 2008 Website "Telegraf.by" Snow Maiden to come to Grandfather Frost's manor back in Belovezhskaya Pushcha on December 6

The holiday "Snow Maiden Meeting" will be on December 6 in the manor of Grandfather Frost in the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha", the BelTA reporter has learned from the administration of the Park.

Following the annual tradition the holiday with songs, dances, round dances, local pancakes and fragrant tea will be in the of the Grandfather Frost's manor for the kids.

The Grandfather Frost's manor in Belovezhskaya Pushcha is open the year round. The Belarusian winter owner does not leave his dwelling-place in hot days either. However, in spring, when heat comes, he takes off his winter fur coat and valenki (Russian warm boots) and clothes in easy camisole (man's sleeveless jacket), straw hat and elegant summer boots. The Snow Maiden, when heat is covering, sets out on the North Pole.

Like in previous years, many visitors will come to meet the Snow Maiden in the manor. About 50 buses with schoolboys from different Belarusian corners are expect to be in Belovezhskaya Pushcha this day.

The manor of Belarusian Grandfather Frost in Belovezhskaya Pushcha has met first visitors in December of 2003. Its location is in the depth, in the core of Pushcha, on the glade where bison come to be fed in the winter. The total area of the manor makes 15 hectares. A carved palace of the Grandfather Frost, a house of his grand daughter Snow Maiden, a Skarbnitsa - storehouse or Santa's grotto, the gifts, letters, drawings, photos and handicrafts which were sent to Grandfather Frost by children, and a set of other attributes accompanying the fantastic hero are constructed there. But, certainly, a 120-year old and 42-meter spruce tree – the highest natural New Year's spruce tree in Europe - is the most important sight of the manor. Over 340 thousands of tourists from 70 countries have visited the Grandfather Frost for the five years since the appearance of the manor.

Olga Kobiak / Brest / BelTA