Belarusian skansen: an authentic museum with a national color

Belarusian skansen: an authentic museum with a national color

04.03.2021 Ozertso

The village of Ozertso is located just 5 km from the Minsk ring road. It is surprising - but not all Minsk residents know about it. And the place is remarkable, and if you have never been there, take your loved ones, a thermos of tea and go for a walk. In fact, the Museum of Architecture and Life is the restored wooden buildings of the 18-19 centuries, transported from other parts of Belarus.
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You've probably seen these thatched huts in many movies. Incredibly beautiful scenes of war films "In August of the 44th ...", "In June of 41st", in the historical "Anastasia Slutskaya", "Wolf Messing", the horror film "Masakra", the series "Children of Vanyukhin" and even a Disney fairy tale were filmed here. "Masters' book". Here, by the way, the film "5 Brides" was filmed, in which one of the main roles was played by Elizaveta Boyarskaya, and at this time she was just having an affair with her future husband Maxim Matveyev. He secretly came to her for the shooting, and Elizabeth in love gave him her movie dinner. In general, you can take a whole excursion around these film locations!

Of course, the open-air museum was not created as a natural site for cinema. First of all, for the sake of preserving monuments of wooden architecture. The idea of ​​an open-air museum came for the first time in 1908 to the famous Belarusian artist Ferdinand Ruschits. For the sake of a noble goal, he and like-minded people in the 1920s explored the villages of Vilensky, Novogrudok, Belostotsky and Polish provinces and found potentially interesting exhibits. Unfortunately, wars prevented his plans from being realized.

They returned to the idea only in the mid-70s. The landscape of the area played an important role in the creation of an ethnographic museum on a large territory between the villages of Ozertso and Strochitsa (by the way, that is why it is called either “Museum in Ozertsa” or “Strochitsa”). With a slight height difference, with the Ptich river flowing nearby and its tributary - Menka, as well as the ancient Gorodishche. The reconstructed village blended into this territory like a native. Modern researchers followed in the footsteps of Ruschits and transported various buildings from churches to sheds. Basically they were from three regions: Central Belarus, Poozerye and Dnieper. Today the museum houses about 40 objects, including the Transfiguration Church of 1704, a parish school, a mill, a barn, a smithy, a bathhouse, and, of course, peasant huts.
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But empty buildings would hardly be of interest to tourists. Therefore, they began to fill them with household items that our ancestors used a hundred or more years ago. The museum has thematic exhibitions about vehicles of that time, beekeeping, fishing and weaving. The guides not only talk about the popular activities of the ancestors, but also show how all these artifacts worked.

In addition, folk holidays are regularly held in Strochitsy - such as Kolyady, Maslenitsa, "Gukanne Viasny", Kupalye, "Vosenski Fest". The largest folk festival in Belarus "Kamyanitsa" was held here every year.
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And if you have already walked in the fresh air and are hungry, it's time to look into the tavern, where guests will be treated to dishes prepared according to old national recipes - potato pancakes, pancakes with machanka, as well as Belarusian warming drinks such as sbitnya, mead or krambambulia.

Distances there are decent - so prepare comfortable shoes. By the way, a bicycle is quite welcome here as a means of transportation. And if it's cold, you can order a chaise and rush through the museum with a breeze.

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