Tuesday 25 July 2017

Irish Latvians stage colourful celebration of their heritage

Beatrise Leikuca, from Blanchardstown in Dublin, wears a traditional costume at the Latvian Cultural Day in Temple Bar. Photo: Colin O’Riordan
Beatrise Leikuca, from Blanchardstown in Dublin, wears a traditional costume at the Latvian Cultural Day in Temple Bar. Photo: Colin O’Riordan

Chai Brady

The Latvian community in Ireland celebrated its vibrant culture and heritage with traditional food, music and dancing.

There are about 25,000 Latvian people living in Ireland.

Dancers and singers travelled from the UK, Norway, Belgium and Ireland to Temple Bar in Dublin for the sixth year of celebrations.

Dancer Beatrise Leikuca (21) moved to Ireland when she was six years old, and studied stage and technical theatre after school.

"So I did everything here, primary school, secondary school, college but I still felt my culture was very important to me.

"It was my dream to be involved and be a part of it," she said.

"When you see a day organised like this, you can see that we're a very strong community no matter how far away from Latvia we are."

A small, colourful craft market provided traditional jewellery and food.

The tasty pastries ranged from Kringelis - a type of sweet pretzel - to plaitsmaize, a tasty cottage cheese treat.

"The food is amazing, it always is, our cakes especially are completely different from Irish food. I would definitely recommend it," Ms Leikuca said.

The Republic of Latvia will celebrate the centenary of its foundation next year.

Irish Independent

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