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Folk-Dancing Flash Mobs and Tug-of-War on Budapest’s Liberty Bridge!

By Tom Szigeti // 2017.08.07.

As we have previously reported, this summer Budapest’s Liberty Bridge (Szabadság Híd) has been a pedestrian-only area on weekends. Yesterday, two groups took advantage of this fact, transforming what is normally a piece of infrastructure into a spot of excitement, dancing, and culture.

Last summer, the closure of Budapest’s Liberty Bridge due to tram line renovations meant that it was closed to traffic, but open to pedestrians. Taking advantage of this, city residents and tourists alike transformed the city’s shortest Danube crossing into an open-air picnic and party zone suspended above the waves of the river (be sure to check out our photo galleries of last summer’s excitement!).

Foreign students participating in a folk-dance flash-mob organized by the Pannonica Dance Studio on Budapest’s Liberty Bridge (Photo: MTI – Szilárd Koszticsák) 

Following the great success of the bridge’s transformation into an ad-hoc park, a number of civil society groups petitioned the city council to make the bridge a pedestrian-only area on weekends this summer. Budapest’s Mayor, István Tarlós, agreed with this idea, saying that “this is a gesture we can make to the youth.”

And yesterday, two groups made the bridge their own.

The Hungarian Scout Association organized a “Scout Bridge” day. As part of this event, scouts (as well as city residents and visitors) were invited to take part in a giant tug-of-war contest to discover “which side of the city is stronger, Buda or Pest?”

A promotional image for the Hungarian Scout Assocation’s “Buda vs. Pest” tug-of-war contest, held Sunday, August 6th on Budapest’s Liberty Bridge (Image: MCSSZ Facebook page)

In addition to the contest of wills between the two halves of the city, the scouts also hosted a treasure hunt on the bridge as well.

As if all of this weren’t enough excitement for one day, the Pannoica dance studio, together with foreign students attending Budapest’s Balassi Institute, staged a folk-dance flash-mob on the bridge, complete with a live band and traditional folk costumes.

You can view more photos of both of these events below:

(Photo: MTI – Szilárd Koszticsák)

(Photo: MTI – Szilárd Koszticsák)

(Photo: MTI – Szilárd Koszticsák)

(Photo: MTI – Szilárd Koszticsák)

Via MTI and Facebook

Images via MTI and Facebook