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Festa Junina

Festas Juninas known as festas de São João for their part in celebrating the nativity of St. John the Baptist, are the annual Brazilian celebrations adapted from European Midsummer that take place in the southern midwinter; these festivities, which were introduced by the Portuguese during the colonial period, are celebrated during the month of June nationwide. The festival is celebrated on the eves of the Catholic solemnities of Saint Anthony, Saint John the Baptist, Saint Peter. Since Northeastern Brazil is arid or semi-arid, these festivals not only coincide with the end of the rainy seasons of most states in the northeast, but they provide people with an opportunity to give thanks to Saint John for the rain, they celebrate rural life and feature typical clothing and dance. Various aspects of the festival originate from the European Midsummer celebrations, such as the creation of a large bonfire. Many of these celebrations now occur with influence from Brazilian rural society; the festivities take place in an arraial, a huge tent made of raw material, reserved for important parties in older Brazilian rural areas.

As the Brazilian climate differs from Europe, Brazilian participants would use the festival as a way to show gratitude for rain. The creation of a large fire, known as a fogueira, is lit during the festival; this originates from a Catholic story of a fire being lit to warn Mary about the birth of St. John the Baptist, thus to have her assistance after childbirth, Elizabeth would have to light a fire on a hill. Most festivals occurred away from the coast line, closer to the interior where many larger plantations were. While still ruled by Portugal, coastline cities, in Pernambuco became industrialized and saw much greater economic prosperity. Hoping to further this growth, King Dom João modified his economic policy to favor cities such as Recife rather than rural interests. Though the Festa Junina continued, its practice in modern cities became much larger. Today, the sizes of the celebrations have surpassed that of Europe. Although they are practiced and hosted by schools, many cities host their own major celebration.

In Caruaru, Pernambuco, a celebration of the festival in 2011 saw 1.5 million attendees, earning a Guinness Book World Record for having the largest celebration of the festival in the world. In Brazil, the festival is practiced by rural farmers, known as caipiras. Men dress up as farm boys with large straw hats and women wear pigtails, painted gap teeth and red-checkered dresses. Dances throughout the festival surround "quadrilha". Most of these dances emerge from 19th-century Europe; the "quadrilha" features couple formations around a mock wedding whose bride and groom are the central focus of the dance. This reflects the fertility of the land. There are various types of dance within the category of quadrilha, all including a heterosexual couple as the primary characters. Cana-Verde, a subcategory of fandango dance styles, are more popular in the south and are improvised. Dances involving Bumba Meu Boi are present during this festival. Here, the dance revolves around a woman desiring to eat the tongue of an ox.

Her husband kills the ox, to the dismay of the ox's owner. A healer enters and resuscitates the ox, all participants celebrate. Accompanying these dances is a genre of music known as Forró; this traditional genre uses accordions and triangles, focuses on the life and struggle of caipiras. The music focuses on saudade, a feeling of nostalgia or forlorn, for rural farm life. More modern versions of the music can include guitars and drums. Many games targeted at children are present at Festa Juninas at festivals hosted in schools serving as a fundraiser. Pescaria: Children use a fishing rod to pick up cans or paper designed to look like fish from a box. Corrida do saci: Children hop on one leg to the end of a line in a race, mimicking the movement of the saci perere. Corrida de três pés: A three-legged race, where two participants tie one of their legs to their partner's leg, race others. Jogo de argolas: Ring Toss. Rings are thrown onto bottles in an attempt to land around the neck. Tiro ao Alvo: Dart toss.

Darts are thrown in an attempt to gain the most points. Winners of these games are given miscellaneous prizes. Today, São João festivities are popular in Brazil's largest cities; the presence of a festival celebrating rural life in an urban setting has revealed modern stereotypes of caipiras. Those residing in larger cities believe rural farmers to be less educated and unable to properly socialize; this is reflected in caricatures of caipiras taught to children in Brazilian schools, who are told to use incorrect grammar and act foolish during the festival. Anxieties over the changing meaning of the festival reflect a growing "carnavalization" of the tradition. Rather than an emphasis on religion, the festival is presented as a massive gathering for both Brazilians and tourists with large concerts in major cities. Festa de São João do Porto Festa Junina, Origins and History Festa Junina in Schools: Lessons of Stereotypes

Api (mountain)

Api is the highest peak in the Yoka Pahar Section of Gurans Himal, part of the Himalayas in the extreme northwest corner of Nepal, near the borders of Tibet. It is a little-known peak in a visited part of the Himalayas, but it rises over the low surrounding terrain. Although low in elevation among the major mountains of Nepal, Api is exceptional in its rise above local terrain. Api peak's south face rises 3,300 metres above its base; the Api region was visited by Westerners in 1899, 1905 and 1936, but the peak was not attempted until 1953 on a visit by W. H. Murray a Scottish Mountaineer with John Tyson; this attempt was unsuccessful, as was another, by Italians, in 1954 which resulted in the death of two expedition members. The first ascent of Api occurred in 1960; the Doshisha Alpine Society of Japan completed the Northwest Face route attempted by the 1954 party. In 1980 a British Army Mountaineering Association expedition made an attempt to climb the peak by the south face reaching within a few hundred metres of the summit.

On 24 December 1983 Polish climbers Tadeusz Piotrowski and Andrzej Bieluń made the first winter ascent. The Himalayan Index lists three more ascents of the peak, in 1978, 1996 and 2001

Transportation in Neyyattinkara

Neyyattinkara has a wide range of transplantation facilities by road, rail or air. The town of Neyyattinkara is well connected to the capital city of Thiruvananthapuram, 20 km away, through regular bus services operated by Kerala State Road Transport Corporation. Neyyattinkara KSRTC Bus Depot operates a wide array of services; these include long-distance services to Guruvayoor, Kozhikode, Chakkulath Kaavu, Ernakulam, etc. A/C Low Floor buses ply along the Neyyattinkara-East Fort-Medical College-Kazhakkuttam route. There are 24 hour bus service between Trivandrum to Nagarcoil via Neyyattinkara town and Nagarcoil to Trivandrum via Neyyattinkara town; the nearest airport is Thiruvananthapuram International Airport. Neyyattinkara Railway Station is located on the Mangalore- Trivandrum - Kanyakumari Railway line. Neyyattinkara railway station code is'NYY'. Except weekly trains, all other daily express trains and passenger trains through this route stop at the station, thus the town is connected by major cities in India, including Chennai, Mumbai, Mangalore, etc.

The Trivandrum Central railway station is about from the town. Express trains will take 13 minutes to reach Trivandrum city from Neyyattinkara town, passenger / Shuttle trains will take 30 minutes. From Neyyattinkara to Nagarcoil side Train Number 16128 Ernad Express arrives at Neyyattinkara at 4.00 Train Number 56311 Trivandrum Nagarcoil Passenger arrives at Neyyattinkara at 7.18 Train Number 56715 Punaloor Kanyakumari Passenger arrives at Neyyattinkara at 9.43 Train Number 16381 Mumbai CST Kanyakumari Express arrives at Neyyattinkara at 9.55 Train Number 56317 Kochuveli Nagarcoil Passenger arrives at Neyyattinkara at 12.35 Train Number 66304 Kollam Kanyakumari arrives at Neyyattinkara at 11.47.

Walnut Street (Pittsburgh)

Walnut Street is located in the Shadyside neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It runs southwest-northeast, bounded on the west by South Aiken Avenue and on the east by Denniston Street. Walnut Street is best known for its upscale shopping, fine dining, private boutiques; some stores include Apple, Apricot Lane Boutiqe, Banana Republic, Blick Art Materials, Gap, J. Jill, Moda and Williams-Sonoma; some popular local restaurants include Cappy's, Mario's, Shady Grove, William Penn Tavern, Pamela's Diner and La Feria. Henne Jewelers, one of Pittsburgh's older jewelry stores, is located on Walnut Street; the store was founded in 1887. Kawaii-Gifts is a store that sells Pittsburgh's largest stock of Japanese imports, including brands like San-X and Uglydolls. La Feria is a Peruvian shop that sells clothes and folk art, it opened in 1993. "The Jam on Walnut" is a summer concert series. The concerts are held on the last Saturday of each summer month, on the corner of Bellefonte and Walnut Street. Proceeds from beer sales go to cystic fibrosis.

The area holds an annual arts festival in August known as the "Art Festival on Walnut Street". The festival includes a juried art show. Nearby, Ellsworth Avenue holds an annual arts festival in the same month, the two festivals have an unofficial rivalry. Ellsworth Avenue Art Festival Official Homepage

John Miller (author)

John "Jack" Miller is a novelist from Newberry, Michigan. Miller retired from the Air Force as a Senior Master Sergeant, he was awarded the US Army and Air Force Good Conduct Medal and several Air Force Commendation Medal and Air Force Meritorious Service Awards. He served as an Air Force Office of Special Investigations special agent. After leaving the Air Force, Miller began his second career with the Clark County District Attorney's Office as a special investigator, working with undercover teams from the local Police and the FBI conducting burglary stings, he joined the Nevada Gaming Control Board as an enforcement agent. He was certified as an expert witness in state and federal courts for gambling cheat trials; as of 2009, John Miller has written seven books. Cold War Warrior All Crooks Welcome Master Cheat! Cold War Defector Operation Switch The Peacekeepers The Black Cat Sin City IndictmentIn addition he has written several short stories and four screenplays, one for a movie and three for TV.

Official website John Miller on LAMOO Books 18 Questions - John "Jack" Miller John Miller on Author's Den