Radovljica hosting annual party of Slovenians living abroad
Radovljica, 6 July - Hundreds of Slovenians from abroad are expected in Radovljica on Saturday for the main event of the annual get-together dubbed Welcome Home. A series of events has been organised since Wednesday, culminating today with a picnic in the Manor Park of the medieval town.
This year's meeting in Slovenia kicked off with football matches at the Brdo pri Kranju estate on Wednesday.
On Thursday, the parliamentary Commission for Slovenians abroad hosted the 18th All-Slovenian Meeting, which was addressed by parliamentary Speaker Dejan Židan and Minister for Slovenians Abroad Peter Česnik.
Late in the afternoon, an exhibition on the Slovenian community in Croatia opened at the Ljubljana National and University Library.
After the opening, bass-baritone Marcos Fink and pianist Nejc Lavrenčič performed a concert titled Songs of My Homelands - Slovenian and Argentinian Solos at the Ljubljana Philharmonics.
On Friday, Slovenia's leading research institute, the Jošef Stefan Institute, hosted an annual conference of students and researchers from Slovenia and abroad. The event focussed on ways to motivate the young to return to Slovenia.
While today's picnic will be the biggest event of all, the annual get-together will conclude with another meeting of the Slovenians from abroad at the Catholic St Stanislav Institute in Ljubljana.
About half a million people identifying themselves as Slovenians live outside Slovenia's borders. There are communities living just beyond the country's borders in Italy (80,000), Austria (50,000) and Hungary (5,000). Some 10,000 also live in Croatia.
About 50,000 live in Germany, 20,000 in France and 5,000 in the UK. The biggest community outside Europe is in the US (300,000), with many people identifying themselves as Slovenians also living in Canada, Argentina and Australia.