The biggest Freedom Day events are planned in Grodno and Minsk. The Belarusian opposition wasn’t allowed to take the event in the capital to the Opera Theatre like last year but intends to spread the celebrations wider across the country.
Freedom day (Dzień Voli – Belarusian) is an unofficial holiday in the memory of the creation of the Belarusian People’s Republic (BPR) in 1918.
City authorities allowed the opposition forces to organize large-scale concerts in Minsk and Grodno to celebrate the 101st anniversary of the Belarusian People’s Republic. Smaller events will take place in other cities of Belarus.
Belarusian expats in Europe and the USA will celebrate Freedom Day with races, concerts, and liturgies.
Rock legends for Minsk and Grodno
In Grodno, Freedom Day concert is scheduled for 23 March in Kaložski Park. The line-up is impressive with Belarusian rock legends Krama, DZIECIUKI, Lyavon Volsky and Zmitser Vaitsyushkevich and others.
The concert starts at 13.00.
In Minsk, the concert will be held on 24 March 24 in Kijeŭski Garden Square. The bands N.R.M., RSP, Daj darogu, and others will play from 13.00 to 21.00.
Both events are free and will have food courts and artisans’ fairs.
Originally, political activists in Minsk filed requests to hold Freedom Day concert at the Opera Theatre, Dinamo stadium or Sports Palace and Plošča Svabody. All those venues were turned down by Minsk authorities.
Police will patrol both events. Visitors can bring the white-red-white flags but pull them out only at the venue. The organizers of the concert in Minsk asked the police not to detain the guests who would want to walk with white-red-white flags in the city after the concert, the police allowed only badges and ribbons.
In Grodno, the white-red-white flags will also be allowed at the event.
Where else will opposition celebrate?
In Brest, the authorities banned the celebration of Freedom Day. In Vitebsk, a small event will take place in a pub, while activists in Mogilev are inviting guests to Gubernskaya Hotel.
Freedom Day will traditionally be celebrated by Belarusians living abroad.
In Israel, Belarusian expats will gather on 25 March in Ashdod city at the monument to Belarusian poet Yanka Kupala.
On the same day in Vilnius, there will be a concert at a cafe and festive events at the European Humanities University.
In Poland, the festivities will begin on 23 March in Warsaw with a march from the monument to Tadeusz Kosciuszko. A festive liturgy and a concert will be held in Bialystok on 24 March.
In the USA, Freedom Day will be celebrated by Belarusians in Miami, New York, and New Jersey. Freedom Day celebrations are also taking place in London, Toronto, and New Zealand.