Czech Republic Turns 100 Years

A Military Parade

Czechoslovakia was founded 100 years ago today, in 1918. To commemorate this event, the Czech Republic planned many different events throughout the year. My sister and mother are visiting for a few days from Paris. We started off the celebrations by watching the military parade down Europska Street, where involved hundreds of military vehicles and personnel. We watched trucks, tanks and many other vehicles whose name I do not know. I found the ones that looked like they were camouflaged using leaves the most interesting. At the end of the parade, three helicopters trailed red, white and blue smoke, the colors of the Czech Republic. There were hundreds of people watching the parade.

Olomouc Band

From the parade, we walked to Dejvicka Street to see some of the ceremony happening there. We watched the Military Music Olomouc band perform and took pictures of some of the military personnel before heading to the metro. Unfortunately, we were not allowed to enter the metro. The metro police wouldn’t let us go down the stairs to the platform. I’m not sure if the platform was already full or what. We decided to walk the 30 minutes to Old Town Square.

Around Old Town

From Hradcanska metro, we walked through Letna and then down over Čechův Most to Parizska Street and Old Town Square. The astronomical clock is newly cleaned and reconstructed, and looks beautiful. They’ve added a netting over the top of it. After stopping to appreciate it for a while, we walked to Wenceslas Square, with a visit to Syl & Interior for a snack and to warm up. Of course, we had to stop to admire the beautiful National Museum which reopened today after closing for renovations in 2011.

We carried on to Obecni Dum (Municipal House), on whose balcony Czechoslovakia was announced. The balcony also got a facelift; when I walked by on Friday, I saw someone painting some of the gold leaves on the balcony. Realizing it was almost time for the fireworks starting at 19:18, we rushed to catch tram 8 to Letna. We made it there with a few minutes to spare. It looked like the fireworks were happening over the Vltava River.

Fireworks!

We got into place in Letna Square just as a test firework was fired. The show started promptly at 19:18. We couldn’t see the low fireworks but could see the higher ones. It was a spectacular display featuring mostly white, red and blue colors, with a musical backdrop. I don’t know what the music was that was playing but I imagine that there was some Smetana and Dvorak.

Czechoslovakia became an independent country on October 28, 2018. The declaration was made by Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, the first president of the republic. Czech Republic and Slovakia split into two countries on January 1, 1993. Happy 100 years anniversary Czechoslovakia.