Czech morning news roundup: Feel-good Friday edition for Nov. 5

This week's most inspiring headlines: a desolate Prague underpass transformed, a record plum harvest, and Czechs adults love playing with Lego. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 05.11.2021 09:06:00 (updated on 06.11.2021) Reading time: 3 minutes

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World People in Need helps 5,600 Afghans in Taliban-controlled country

The Czech humanitarian NGO People in Need has provided financial aid to some 800 families, roughly 5,600 people, in Afghanistan after the Taliban movement overtook the country in August. Some 4,000 households or 28,000 people should receive the aid by the end of 2021, the NGO said this week.

From the NGO's public fundraising efforts for SOS Afghanistan and the money allocated by the Czech Foreign Ministry, every family received some CZK 1,600-2,000 to buy food, fuel, winter equipment, and pay the rent.

The Taliban took over the country in August. According to UN data, 500,000 internally displaced persons were in the country already before the Taliban's coup, but this number continued to grow after the movement seized control of the territory. (ČTK)

Retail Sales of adult Lego sets booming in Czech Republic

In an interview with Czech server Media Guru, Martin Prokop, Senior Marketing Manager Lego Group, said 19% of Czech adults spend time building from cubes and these numbers are only expected to grow. Prokop said that the adult segment currently accounts for about 30% sales.

With a study showing that some 70 percent of adults are looking for ways to relax, a number that was largely driven by the pandemic, the company is set to launch its biggest Lego kit to date, the Titanic, this autumn. Measuring over 135 cm in length and with more than 9,000 pieces, building it is likely to take more than a few evenings.

CULTURE U.S. trailer released for Czech stop-motion animated film

Goldwyn Films has unveiled the official U.S. trailer for the Czech stop-motion animated film "Even Mice Belong in Heaven." The film premiered at the 2021 Annecy Film Festival and also played at the Karlovy Vary, Shanghai, and Edinburgh Film Festivals. It depicts a tale of two enemies, Mouse and a Fox, who after an unfortunate accident, meet in animal heaven and become best friends upon losing their natural instincts.

The film is a co-production of Poland, Slovakia, France and the Czech Republic. It was shot at Prague's Barrandov Studios, with 3D animation and special effects in France. The film, which has more than 50 characters and about 30 sets, opened to great acclaim in the Czech Republic and will now get an English-dubbed version.

FOOD Let the slivo flow! Distiller reports record plum harvest

A distillery in Veselí nad Moravou says it is seeing a noticeable uptick in interest in processing plums into brandy. It was also a record year for plums in Moravia, where the spirit is traditionally made, with a large number of plums growing particularly on the border of Hodonín and Slovácko.

Distiller Stanislav Doupovec told Czech server Deník that it may be the best season he's seen in his sixteen years on the job: the distillery is already booked through February and will probably work through mid-March. Slivovice is a plum brandy that is traditional to the Wallachian region of Eastern Moravia on the Slovakian border. It's made by leaving ripe plums to ferment in wooden barrels for six to eight weeks. 

PRAGUE Desolate underpass transformed into skatepark

A tangle of underpasses beneath the Hlávka Bridge at the Vltavská C metro station has been transformed by Prague 7 into a public skate park and sports area. With the premises near the Vltavská metro being renovated, the sports zone should be open to the public in about a month.

The abandoned area will feature not only a skatepark but a basketball court and bouldering area. In the spring, there will also be a stand where visitors can borrow a skateboard and other sports equipment for free.

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