Old Saint Basil's Cathedral in MoscowJohnson's Russia List title and scenes of Saint Petersburg
Excerpts from the JRL E-Mail Community :: Founded and Edited by David Johnson

#1 - JRL 9116 - JRL Home

MOSCOW, April 10 (RIA Novosti) - Glorious spring has come onto its own in Moscow. It was 15-17 degrees centigrade all through last week. Weekend is no disappointment, either, both for the weather and celebrations.

Kuzminki Park, in the city's southeast, had its annual Bird Day, yesterday. Local schoolchildren made a great many starling-houses to arrange them in park trees. The gathering could compete in quick wit and erudition in merry contests-a general quiz under the motto, What? When? Where? and special ornithological quizzes. There was a puppet show, "Poor Owl Begs for Intercession", with an environment protection message, and a trained bird of prey show. Folk song-and-dance companies were also performing. The gala organizers were circulating a booklet, "Birds in Kuzminki Park"-a colorful and imaginative memento of the red-letter day.

All that information reached Novosti from the Southeast District Prefecture press service.

The owl has been proclaimed Bird of the Year, so the park was offering public lectures about owls, and owl-houses were affixed to trees in plenty.

Russia has been celebrating Bird Days in grand style ever since the 19th century's latter half.

Cats are other weekend heroes-Moscow is hosting a 3rd international all-breed championship. Several countries are offering three hundred pets of 25 breeds, some very rare.

"A cat show is a major cultural event, what with the beauty of these excellent animals. Such shows teach us loving care of our pets. They are also charitable events to help stray animals in Moscow. Pet shows instill kind feelings in our heart so to improve the air in every home-and that means in the entire city," say show organizers.

Proud in their fluffy and bewhiskered beauty, the contestants are judged on Olympic standards with many titles in offer. Two are the best sought-for-Championship Candidate of the WFF (World Felinological Federation) and RFF-Russian Felinological Federation-Champion.