Christmas Village at Estonian Open Air Museum

Christmas is one the most cherished holidays of the year awaited by children and grownups alike. Christmas period is long, beginning with St Thomas’ Day on December 21 and lasting over the New Year’s Eve up till Epiphany on January 6. This special time holds a lot – brightness as well as darkness, fun as well as silence, joy as well as sadness.

In Christmas Village at the Estonian Open Air Museum time is telling its story – a story with no beginning or end.

December 16–18, 11:00–16:00

This event is part of the programme Tallinn 2011 – European Capital of Culture.

Sassi-Jaani farm – Christmas fair. Video installation.
Every day from 15:00 to 17:00 a sound and video installation „A story without beginning or end” demonstrates an eternal cycle of both human life and nature as well as the whole universe. It connects known to the unknown and the beginning to the end. Video animation by Liisi Reitalu, musical realization by Kulno Malva.

Hää äri. Time of angels.
For our forefathers the whole world was full of spirits. People looked up to them in hope for consolation and support, just the way they look up to Christmas angels. At Hää äri everyone can make one’s own small Christmas angel.

Köstriaseme farm. Time of good wishes.
At Christmas time disguised figures were wandering around the village, bringing good wishes to the families. The most popular creatures to impersonate were a Christmas goat, a Christmas stork and a Christmas bear. Some of them can be met at Köstriaseme farm. The family of the farm kindly explains the old rituals which were supposed to secure good luck.

Pulga farm. Time of plenty.
Christmas was a real feast time. To ensure plentiful meals for the whole upcoming year, people used to eat up to 12 times during Christmas night. Starting from the Christmas Day everybody was allowed to play, tell stories and solve riddles on the straw laid out on the floor. It is possible to tell fortune by casting molten lead in the smithy of Pulga farm. Herbal infusion is boiling in a big kettle of the summer kitchen.

Härjapea farm. Time of caring.
In the 1920-1930s, a number of women's societies were established in rural regions all over Estonia. Active members of those societies held cooking and household courses, took up educational trips and charity craft nights. Members of the society are baking gingerbread cookies and teach how to set up a table and how to wrap Christmas gifts.

Nuki farm. Time of darkness.
It's the period of longest evenings and darkest nights. A lonesome poor cotter finds solace in reading Christmas stories by candlelight.

Kuie school. Time for anticipation.
Emotions run high at the parish school. Mouthwatering smells are spreading from the kitchen, Christmas tree is being brought into the classroom, a Christmas play is being rehearsed and preparations are made for the annual visit of the lady of the manor.

One can send a special greeting card from the Christmas post office!

Sepa farm. Time of silence.

The birth of Jesus Christ is awaited at Sepa farm in the family of an Orthodox priest. The priest's wife is rehearsing silent chorals with the members of the parish, the priest's mother is painting an icon. The smell of just made candles adds up to the special atmosphere of the fast.

Sutlepa chapel. Time for worship.
Saturday, December 17
12.30 Studium Vocale chamber choir
14.00 Studium Vocale chamber choir
15.30 Children from the singing school of the Estonian Open Air Museum and Kurtna School
Sunday, December 18
12.30 Children from Nõmme Youth House
13.30 Chamber choir of Tallinn Bethel Church
15.00 Pre-Christmas contemplation time, lead by Pastor Toomas Paul.

Traditional Christmas dishes are being served at Kolu Inn.

Horse cart and sledge rides!
Horse stop is just opposite the Inn.



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