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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn the fertile imaginations of children, humans can meet and chat with animals and they can learn from one another.

Our young clients were delighted by the meeting of North represented by Elena and South in the guise of a penguin.

Having travelled the length and breadth of the planet and now arrived in Ruse to launch a Christmas Ice Festival, Elena and the Penguin revealed something of the diversity of global Christmas traditions.

Penguin was astonished to discover that the penguin dance has “gone viral” and possibly even more astonished to discover how a Bulgarian-Romanian Internet link got everyone on the dance floor with “Made in Romania”

Suddenly fluffy Pavlinka (Snowflake) arrived with her friends – naughty squirrels – and with smiling faces melted the ice with the song “Quietly falls the First Snow.” Having emerged from her mountain stronghold, the mysterious Ice Queen demanded an Oriental version of “Jingle Bells” and made sure she got it by setting off an avalanche that swept up everyone. With a clatter of wooden stakes, the Ruse-based rap artist Zvezdaka entered supported by a group of rap – carol singers and together they put a contemporary spin on a traditional folk song and related customs.

The ice was finally melted when the Snow Princess Rumi sang the song “Children’s Planet”.

But the surprises didn’t end there. Theatre “Camilla” provided a special interactive Christmas show in which the children actively participated on stage as fir trees, deer and other traditional Christmas characters. It was great fun for all children including our special guests from the city’s new small group homes who joined the dancing.

Then, of course, came Santa with his bulging sack – “Are there any good boys and girls here?”

It’s a shame it had to end.

Thank you for the team that made this possible – organisers and generous donors – those who make Christmas truly magical!