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Celebrations of the International Day of Euskera will take place worldwide from Sydney to New York


The International Day of Euskara will once again be the day when Eusko Ikaskuntza announces winner of the 2011 ENE Saria. Picutred here, last year’s winner, the Sustraiak-Erroak Association of Paris (photo
The International Day of Euskara will once again be the day when Eusko Ikaskuntza announces winner of the 2011 ENE Saria. Picutred here, last year’s winner, the Sustraiak-Erroak Association of Paris (photo


This Saturday, December 3rd, Basques all over the world will celebrate the International Day of Euskera, an event that enjoys great support in Basque clubs all around the world. In places like Australia, Argentina, Mexico, Italy, Uruguay, Chile or the US there are many Basque descendants who study Basque, in a personal effort to conserve and cultivate the languages of their ancestors. All together, with other thousands of Basques in the Diaspora, they will join a host of activities to celebrate the “lingua navarrorum.”

Donostia-San Sebastian.  Basque centers around the world have already begun their International Day of Euskera celebrations, a holiday created in 1949 by Eusko Ikaskuntza, and who has currently taken hold not only in the Basque Country but also in the 8th province, the Diaspora.  In Madrid and Barcelona the celebrations begin today even thought the official celebration in the rest of the world is this Saturday, December 3rd

Madrid’s Basque club will be visited today but the Deputy Minister of Language Policy of the Basque Government, Lourdes Auzmendi, and officers of HABE, who will participate in an official act in the Pello Aramburu room at the institution.  A bertso-afaria (Bertso-dinner) has also been organized in the Sukalde txoko in which the bertsolaris Julen Zelaieta and Unai Gaztelumendi will participate.  In Barcelona, Basque language students also organized a dinner to celebrate.

In Cordoba (Argentina), celebrations took place last Saturday coinciding wiht the “Hegan” (Flying) show by the local group Txotx.  On Wednesday, yesterday, it was followed by the show “Zirt-Zart,” put on by the Basque Cultural Association Gerora in the Plazoleta Guernica, that combined dancing, singing and music performances by Txotx, Hitza, and Baietz respectively, during the second edition of the Basque Language Week in Cordoba.

On Friday, December 2nd, the party will move to Euskal Herria with a pelota match between Xala – Laskurain and Barriola-Oinatz Bengoetxea, at the Atano Fronton in Donostia accompanied by an official act in Euskera by the Deputy Minister of Language Policy of the Basque Government.  The match can be seen on ETB1.

On the same day, but on the other side of the world, the youth of Valparaiso-Viña’s club of del Mar in Chile will hold a small meeting in order to celebrate the Basque Day.  We also just found out that activities will also take place in Rome.

Basque Week in Mar del Plata

In Mar del Plata, Argentina, the celebrations of Basque Day have been extended over an entire week, just as in previous years, at the hands of the Denak Bat Basque club and its active Group of Basque students.  Friday’s activities include a showing of Kutsidazu bidea Isabel (Show me the way Isabel), a film based on the book of the same name by Joxean Sagastizabal about a new Basque speaker from Donostia who learns Basque in a farmhouse.  There will also be card championships in mus and canasta.  The fight for the Basque Week trophy will take place at the club’s restaurant.

Mar del Plata’s Basque Week will conclude on Saturday with offering a wreath and a commemorative event at the Tree of Gernika at the Plaza San Martin.  In addition, “Euskara Denonzat,” the magazine published annually by the group “Artaburu Euskaltzale Elkartea” will also be available. 

From Montevideo to Chascomus

In Montevideio, Uruguay, the Euskal Erria Basque club will celebrate Basque Day tomorrow, coinciding with the end of the Basque courses and the awarding of diplomas to its students.  In addition, the Basque club will also welcome the winning pelotaris who were awarded the silver medal at the last Pan-American Games in Guadalajara. 

On Saturday, December 3rd, the celebrations multiply.  In Buenos Aires, Argentina, the Euskaltzaleak Basque club, dedicated especially to teaching Basque, will hold a large celebration at its clubhouse at Independencia 1722.  Festivities will begin with a concert by the club choir, and a mention of the campaign “Teila bat Argentinako euskararentzat/A Tile for Euskera in Argentina,” followed by the presentation of its new website.  The party will conclude with a dinner and an exhibit of the students’ work.

Still in Argentina, in Chascomus, the Zingirako Euskaldunak Basque club will give a talk on Basque literature and will present the book Curso de literatura vasca (A Basque Course) by Dr. Carlos Irisarri.  Events were organized with the collaboration of the Writers Society of Chascomus Argentina.  In San Nicolas the Basque club will celebrate again with is Basque students, the Errekatarrak choir and the dance group from the Basque club Urrundik from Parana.  In Rio Cuarto, the youth of the Gure Ametza Basque club has organized a concert with the groups Cosa de Duendes and Baietz. 

Mexico, New York, Quebec, Sydney…

In Mexico, the Basque club will be the stage for a lively festival that will coincide with the main act by the Etxepare Basque Institute to mark the International Day of Euskera in the world. It will be attended by the writer Anjel Lertxundi; Aizpea Goeneaga, Director of the Basque institute, and MariJose Olaziregi, its director of Basque language promotion; as well as the Mexican artist Alejandro Quijano, along with Lourdes Arrechea, Euskal Etxea of Mexico President, and members of the local Basque community. The Festival will include a concert by brotherbertsolaries Steve and Fredi Paya and the Ugarte Anaiak, txalapartaris; a meal, a tribute to the TV series "Goenkale,” games, crafts and an exhibit by Alejandro Quijano.

In New York, the Basque club has prepared a party that will begin with a reading of Lauaxeta and Lizardi’s poetry, followed by the showing of Korrika followed by a Carol workshop by Aitzol Azurtza.  In London, the London Basque Society has also organized a party this Saturday.  In Boise, Idaho it will be celebrated at the Basque Museum on Grove Street, with cocktails at 6pm, cartoons in Basque, a mini Basque class, and a conference on the Basque language, pintxo tasting and taloa, with dancing to the local group Txantxangorriak complete with Basque Karaoke.

In Montreal, the Euskaldunak Basque club of Quebec has organized a large program that will run through the 11th of December.  This Saturday the celebration will include a meal and a meet and greet with the bertsolari Xumai Murua.  On December 7tht there will be a bertsolari workshop, and on December 9th there will be a conference on this art of the Basque oral tradition.  On December 11th the celebration will close with a Christmas bertso-lunch. 

Finally, from the calls that we have received at the time of this article, we will highlight Sydney Australia where the Gure Txoko Basque club will celebration the Day of Euskera on Sunday December 4th with a meal, with more than 100 people in attendance, according to the club, and where the Basque students will perform some songs in Basque.


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