Decision in European Capital of Culture race expected soon

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Ljubljana – All four Slovenian cities bidding to share the tittle of the 2025 European Capital of Culture with Germany’s Chemnitz have submitted their final presentations to the Culture Ministry. A jury is expected pick the winner among Ljubljana, Nova Gorica, Ptuj and Piran on 18 December.

The capital, which is running with the support of 25 municipalities in the Ljubjana region, has selected solidarity as the central theme of the candidacy, while the slogan is Wireless!.

Ljubljana’s programme consists of 104 projects, with at least a third of the programme planned outside the city. The goal is to find answers to the challenges of cities of the future and show solidarity with the region and country as a whole, the City of Ljubljana said.

The last application step has also been made by the team that drew up the candidacy of Nova Gorica. Its leader Neda Rusjan Bric told the STA the motto is Go! Borderless, with the goals also being urbanistic – to operate as one city with neighbouring Gorizia in Italy, even though with two cultures.

Rusjan Bric said the two cities were already connected well, but more could be done with the European Culture Capital project, as links are still modest in the field of culture. The programme involves the entire region on both sides of the border.

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In Ptuj, Slovenia’s oldest town, the programme strives to connect the city and the region and is built on centuries of stories and myths. The idea is to provide modern interpretations of a rich cultural heritage, connect it to European culture, demonstrate openness for change and a high level of inclusion for the local population.

The bid’s slogan is Ptuj, A City of Millennia-Long Transformations, while the candidacy consists of four programme pillars, 24 culture segments and six infrastructure projects.

The candidacy headlined Piran-Pirano 4 Istria 2025 and connecting the coastal towns of Piran, Izola, Koper and Ankaran, has picked the slogan Wave of Change.

The organisers said they are cooperating with over 50 culture institutions, scholars and international experts. Players from over 45 countries have gotten involved and over 500 letters of intent have been signed.

“With a wave of change we will surpass the old dualisms of acquiring and consuming and propose new ways of work, thought and sensing in connection with nature, the inland, maritime transport, heritage and the future of tourism, seasonal orientation and salt,” the organisers said.

This will be the second time that a Slovenian city is a European Capital of Culture. In 2012 the honour fell to Maribor, the country’s second largest city.

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