Republic of Slovenia 25th Independence Day
Cleveland City Hall Rotunda June 10, 2016
The 25th anniversary of the creation of the Republic of Slovenia in 1991 was celebrated in the Rotunda of Cleveland City Hall on Friday June 10, 2016.
Slovenian Consul General Andrej Gregor Rode welcomed the crowd to the celebration of the 25th anniversary of Slovenian independence in the Rotunda of Cleveland City Hall.
Slovenian Consul General Andrej Gregor Rode
Consul General Rode then introduced the Zarja Singing Society, the oldest Slovenian choral group in the world outside of Slovenia, which led the Slovenian and US national anthems.
(As always, we encourage you to watch the videos full screen. Click on the icon in the lower right of the video screen to maximize.)
Zarja Singing Society leading the national anthems
Next, Slovenian Consul General Andrej Gregor Rode told about Slovenians coming to Cleveland in the 1880's and thanked Mayor Jackson for his support and presented him with a book.
Mayor Frank Jackson and Slovenian Consul General Andrej Gregor Rode
Mayor Frank Jackson then made his remarks.
Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson
Senator George Voinovich was next to speak and he gave some historical perspective on Slovenia's independence.
Senator George Voinovich
Councilman Mike Polensek spoke next.
Councilman Mike Polensek
Former Cleveland Councilman Joe Cimperman was next to speak.
Former Cleveland Councilman Joe Cimperman
Mr. Gorazd Zmauc, Minister of the Republic of Slovenia for Slovenians Abroad, spoke next.
Gorazd Zmauc, Minister of the Republic of Slovenia for Slovenians Abroad
Former Slovenian Consul General Dr. Zvone Žigon spoke next and presented proclamations to Rose Marie (Macek) Jisa, president of Slovenian Genealogy Society International, Douglas Elersich, leader of the Zarja Singing Society and others.
Former Slovenian Consul General Dr. Zvone Zigon
Stay informed about the local Slovenian community by signing up for the free Slovenian eNews mailings. You can select other specific groups as well. It's easy and free. Fill out the form for the free Slovenian eNews.
If it's Slovenian in Cleveland, it's on ClevelandPeople.Com***
The Slovenian Singing Society Zarja has been singing since 1916. They performed two songs to end the program. This song is called 'I am Slovenian'.
Slovenian Singing Society Zarja
Their second song was described by Douglas Elersich as "their theme song" and the audience clapped along.
The formal program ended but the guests enjoyed Slovenian wine and food as they mingled.
NOTE: Sadly, Senator George Voinovich passed away Sunday morning June 12, 2016. He loved the Cultural Gardens, especially the Slovenian and Serbian Gardens of his heritage, and at an event in the Gardens Sunday morning several tributes were paid to the Mayor/Governor/Senator from Chris Ronayne, president of University Circle Inc., Sheila Crawford, president of the Cleveland Cultural Gardens Federation, Paul Burik, past-president of the CCGF and Erika Puussar from the Estonian Garden speaking for the Baltic (Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian) community. A moment of silence was also observed.
Want to learn about ethnic and cultural events in Cleveland such as the Kurentovanje Parade and Festival? Sign up for the free eNews and every Wednesday morning you will receive a free e-mail listing the next week's events. It's easy and free.