eesti keeles

Press Releases
Open in print mode

The President of the Republic participated in Sangaste Rye Festival

President Arnold Rüütel today in Sangaste Castle opened the Estonian Rye Festival, dedicated to the 160th birth anniversary of Count Friedrich von Berg, and to the 130th anniversary of Sangaste Rye.

In his opening address, the President of the Republic said that the year 2005 could be rightfully called Estonian Rye Year, and that event should be preserved not only in cultural history and history of our own country but also on broader international scale. "Not every nation's contribution to world culture reaches the top of plant breeding and spreads from there over the seas and lands reaching also beyond the ocean. With Sangaste Rye, we Estonians, have made such contribution," the Head of State continued.

President Rüütel stressed that the richest and the most capacious part of material and cultural heritage of our people could be associated with rural areas. "The town culture of Estonians is only a mere century old, but the culture of our rural people stretches back for many hundreds of years. Alongside with folklore and farm architecture, also farming tools, methods of work and national symbols form a valuable part of our cultural heritage. All those things explain the story of development and shaping of the Estonian people, and not knowing that story it is not possible to understand the aspirations of our people today,'' the President of the Republic said.

The President of the Republic noted that we showed our mentality and attitude mainly on festive occasions and that would hardly advance life in Estonia. "We could advance our life through our everyday work, bringing up our children and beautifying our homes. We could demonstrate our patriotic feelings and respect towards the work of our predecessors also through growing rye at least on a small patch of land in our home garden as many households have already done. Nowadays, corn and potato fields have become a rare sight near country homes, but a patch of Sangaste Rye would be worth to be shown not only to our children but also to our guests," the Head of State stressed.

The Head of State expressed recognition to the Estonian Rye Society, which during its 5-year activity had highlighted permanent national values and had ennobled the meaning of several essential cultural symbols. "The membership of the Society comprises representatives from all walks of life who attach importance to the wellbeing of Estonia. I wish them unabated determination in fulfilling their mission, and I believe that the Society's membership will continue to grow," the President of the Republic said and wished the same patriotic frame of mind to all those at present.

The president of the Estonian Rye Society, Vahur Kukk handed over the Society's decorations of honour as a special tribute in recognition of services in safeguarding Estonian national values. The first decoration of honour was awarded to the President of the Republic who is Patron of the Estonian Rye Society.

In the course of the festival a memorial statue of Count Friedrich von Berg and a memorial room dedicated to Sangaste Rye were opened. The festival programme included also a fair of rye bread and Estonian dishes.

Public Relations Unit of the Office of the President
Kadriorg, July 2, 2005

© 2006 Office of the President l tel: + 372 631 6202 l fax: + 372 631 6250 l