In the centre of Rijeka on Wednesday June 26, 2019, a magical street spectacle opens this year’s Children’s Festival “Tobogan” Rijeka 2020 – European Capital of Culture.

On a hot summer evening, thousands of young and adult Rijeka citizens enthusiastically welcomed the “Spark!” drummers, a part of the British Worldbeaters organisation, who enchanted the audience from Square 128 with their mysterious characters made up of lights and sound. The Croatian Army brigades led the way to Klobučarić Square, where the audience could see the performance of the large luminous “Birdmen” of the Dutch Close – Act Theatre, as well as their curious “i-Puppets”.

The fun continued in Klobučarić Square with the workshop “Superjunak” by ArtMašina, where children and adults were transformed into superheroes, accompanied by the music of Radio Roža and Sun Matt. Stephany Stefan carried out her attractive fiery performance, while Oblik 3 made a striking projection mapping on the facade of the Nikola Tesla primary school.

The opening of “Tobogan” is an excellent introduction to what awaits for Rijeka children, their families and guests over the next two weeks, until July 10, at the Children’s Festival Rijeka 2020 – the European Capital of Culture, which shall be organised for the third year in a row. This is a free, fun and creative gathering.

This year’s “Tobogan” festival is bigger than ever and brings more than 50 creative workshops and 32 public events to various locations around the city – movie projections, puppetry and drama performances, concerts, exhibitions, city and nature walks, video games and disco. All the details of this year’s “Tobogan” children’s festival program are available at https://rijeka2020.eu/projekti/tobogan/.

“Tobogan” is conceived as an event that encourages children and parents tosocialize and share, meet and greet, gain new friendships and magical moments that are remembered for a lifetime. The large number of children participating in this year’s “Tobogan” children’s festival best shows how much Rijeka needed a festival like this. It also shows the orientation and the desire to create worthy permanent manifestations of the European Capital of Culture, which will continue to exist even after 2020. In fact, the “Tobogan” children’s festival presents a lot of things that will be located in the Children’s house, which is being built as a part of the European Capital of Culture project, in the former Benčić complex, the future Rijeka art district. It offers a way in which creative children of Rijeka will carry the life of this city in the future, as children who grow up in the capital and absorb creative energy can be the builders of a new, better world in which we want to live.

The “Tobogan” children’s festival is part of the program direction for Children’s house Rijeka 2020 – European Capital of Culture, and its program is created through the joint efforts of the following organisations: Art Cinema, City Puppet Theatre Rijeka, City Library Rijeka, Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Youth Council Benčić, and TD RIJEKA 2020.