Many and varied are the events that take place in the city, throughout the year. Events of the Spiritual Center, every week from October to May, events of music clubs and groups, the Lyceum of Greek Girls, the Folk Dance Association, "Pyrriches", the Cultural Summer of the Sainopoulei Theater, events of the Mountaineering Association and "Outdoor Life », sports events organized by the ONA of the Municipality of Spartans, such as the Tour of the city in November, the Spartathlon, with international participation at the end of September, the Spartakiad (cycling race) in the first week after the Spartathon and various other sports international competitions once the time.
Sainopouleio Theater (tel. 27310 28878, 28184) has been the center of Laconia's cultural events for the past 19 years, hosting the best musical and theatrical performances given throughout Greece. It is a modern amphitheatre, but it meets all the specifications of the ancients in terms of orientation, the view ("gazing" at Taygetos and Mystras), the acoustics, the immediacy of the spectator's communication with the actor. It is divided into 4 stands, has 15 rows of seats and serves 2,000 spectators. Around it stretches the Sainopouleio Park, an area where we find a traditional watermill, the Chrysavgi villa, a street with palm trees, a playground, as well as the street of the poets, with busts of N. Vrettakos, G. Ritsos and other poets.
Information: tel. 210 3227756
In the spring of 490 BC, the Athenians send to their ally Sparta the meridian Pheidippides, asking for help to face the Persians at Marathon. According to the testimony of Herodotus, Pheidippides arrived in Sparta on "the next day of his departure from Athens". It was the pinnacle of the limits of human endurance!
Two and a half thousand years later, a British Philhellenic and scholar of ancient history, John Foden, RAF Wing Commander and long-distance runner, arrives in Athens, in October 1982, with a group of fellow runners, and running in his footsteps Pheidippides find that Herodotus was "vindicated", since the three finished in front of the statue of Leonidas in Sparta in times of 36 to 39 hours!
In 1984 the International Spartathlon Association was founded which organizes the Spartathlon race at the end of September, with the participation of the brightest international names among long distance runners. In 1984, Yiannis Kouros finished first in a time of 20 hours and 25', the shortest time to date. Kostas Michalopoulos took part and finished from Laconia.
MUNICIPALITY OF ASOPOS
You will attend many events and celebrations if you visit the Municipality of Asopou, such as:
Saint Dimitrios in Papadianika (October 26), Chrysafitissa in Papadianika (the day after St. Thomas' Sunday).
During the summer, the many festivals of the region undertake to introduce the visitor to the traditions and festive customs. Cultural events are organized by the Municipality and the many Associations of the area. Fisherman's Day takes place every year in August. During the year there are plenty of events of entertainment, commemoration and celebration and in recent years there is a big carnival in Neapolis on Halloween.
Mani's course in history is unique (wrote on 21-11-1993 the famous Kathimerini), and its nature is also unique. Combining these two and apart from the catalytic charm they exert you understand the kind of people this land produces as well as their creations. Their architecture, customs, obituaries, their bravery. The Maniacs always fought, everywhere and on the front line.
Mani has so far kept its color, while the special local culture with strong traditions (e.g. unwritten law for agreements of all kinds, buying and selling, etc.), socially organized with separate customs and manners blends harmoniously with the separate landscape. People speak a language with verbal pronunciation and idioms that have deep roots in the ancient Greek language (Doric).
The custom of revenge in Mani has prevailed to be called vendetta, instead of the correct gdikyomos or dikiomos, but the word vendetta does not exist in traditional Mani. Besides, as an ethnographic and scientific term, vendetta denotes a particular form of bloody enmity and conflict that results in successive murders and revenges between two families. Generally, when the conflict took place between members of the same genus, the eldership (=genus council) intervened and tried to reconcile them. The causes of the conflicts and killings were varied. Women also played an important role in maintaining the custom, who with their obituaries pushed the men of the family to murder.
Chastisement was an honorable and acceptable means usually used by the avenger to achieve his purpose, and he was highly valued if he succeeded in getting his revenge, even in this way. After the offense he had suffered was publicly announced, the genarch honestly declared war on the opponent and guarded "chosia", which means ambush, cartel and surprise, and the opponent was obliged to guard.
The gerontiki (a group whose mission was to reconcile the conflicting parties) mediated, in an attempt to reconcile the differences. Sometimes there was a treva, i.e. a truce, which suspended the laws of gdikiom when there were vital seasonal tasks (olive picking, etc.).
Psychic or psych brotherhood is the opposite of gidikiom, a conciliatory custom of apology and forgiveness. It is the custom of Easter Sunday. Then when in the second resurrection the contenders stand opposite each other and greet each other with the kiss of love.
The famous manic obituary does not only express the shocking presence of death. It is also the heartbreaking protest of the young widowed woman. The desperate voice of the fatherless daughter. The saddest expression of supreme pain, the beautiful and tender cry of the lightning-struck mother who is left without a child.
Editor: Fotini Anastasopoulou