Ciocanesti, Suceava County is Cultural Village of Romania 2014

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The village of Ciocanesti in Suceava County (northeastern Romania) has been awarded on Thursday the honour of Cultural Village of Romania, the Minister Delegate for SMEs, Business Environment and Tourism Maria Grapini announced at the Embassy of France in Bucharest.

She qualified the project as 'extraordinary for Romania' and congratulated the Association of Most Scenic Villages of Romania (ASFR) and all its member municipalities. 'People change the world, people change life,' Grapini said; she added that villages must be stimulated towards development and better living conditions, as well as for preserving their traditions, habits, holidays, and traditional food.

The minister expressed her pride for the large number of visitors at Romania's stand at the Tourist Fair in Israel; Romania has been chosen to host the press conference of this event, 'meaning it has much to say to the world in this field,' she said.

The French Ambassador Philippe Gustin highlighted the importance of this new initiative of ASFR.

He announced that the French Institute, one of the partners in this event, will grant to the winning village free access to 'Culturetheque', a portal to a vast fund of online digital resources.

'We are not competing against anybody and we will try to involve as many municipalities as possible in the activities of this programme,' Ciocanesti Mayor Radu Ciocan said.

He told AGERPRES that among the happenings and events offered by Ciocanesti there are the Painted Easter Eggs Festival, the Timber Rafting, the Mountain Civilizations, the Bistrita Aurie (Golden Bistrita) River, and the promotion of dowry chests.

The National Tourism Authority President Razvan Filipescu and the ASFR Chairman Nicolae Marghiol attended the event.

ASFR has hosted on Thursday at the French Embassy the evaluation of the applications submitted by five villages for the title of Cultural Village of Romania 2014. AGERPRES

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