Kaziuko mugė (Kaziukas Fair)

Kaziuko mugė (Kaziukas Fair) is an annual Lithuanian folk fair held in the very beggining of March. It is a joyful fest of Lithuanian folk arts and crafts where plenty of original art works, thoroughly made utensils and homemade kickshaws are sold in the central streets of Vilnius and Kaunas cities. This event attracts many citizens and city guests every year as every year it offers many new things as well as old and well like traditional ones.

Every year Kaziuko mugė announces the beginning of spring and the end of winter. The fest always occupies the area of Gediminas avenue, Pilies street and the Town Hall Square in Vilnius and the surroundings of Freedom Avenue in Kaunas. The Kaziuko mugė is not the nowadays invention, it is an echo of historical Lithuanian ethnographic traditions. According to historical facts, it first was arranged in the beginning of 16th century. Its derivation is closely associated with the cult of historical st. prince Kazimieras.

In these old times people were given permits to trade in the central street of Vilnius city during the Kaziukas calendar fest. Thus merchants felt the great demand of their goods as well as citizens were satisfied with the supply and prices. As both sides felt it useful, the fest became a nice tradition which was lead not only by big market, but also by sounds of folk music, dances, laugh, performances, traditional processions and goods that symbolized this grand event. One of the most traditional purchases was the so called heart shaped cookies called “Kaziuko širdis“ (Heart of Kaziukas) that were often decorated by nice appeals, loving words, names or special signs. Also, a necklace of round cookies was a necessary purchase for everyone visiting the Kaziuko mugė then.  In addition to this, beautiful palms were also of great demand as well as  hand  made agricultural implements which were then used in every day life.

Nowadays people gather to Kaziuko mugė not to buy something practical, but more to find something beautiful and authentic, reflecting national Lithuanian spirit and culture for their home. Incredibly traditions of this fest remained very similar till nowadays. People are still looking for palms, traditional cookies to buy as well as they are still coming here for the festive uproar and performances to enjoy.

There are no equal occasions in Lithuania for the 3 days lasting fest called Kaziuko mugė. In case you are in Vilnius or in Kaunas in the very begginig of spring, do not miss a chance to attend this amazing market where old traditions, honesty and folklore unite into one wonderful event.