„BAKERY DAYS" is a project of the Agricultural School "Šumatovac", a project of a couple of enthusiasts, including myself, which began fourteen years ago with the goal of improving student enrollment in school, in the educational profile - a baker.
At the beginning, it was a project without any funds. I remember the time when my colleagues and I went from store to store, from company to company and begged them to give some prizes to the participants in various competitions and contests.
From that first day, until today, like my other colleagues, I volunteer from year to year with undiminished enthusiasm, developing the event, expanding it, improving it.
In just a few years, the people of the Municipality recognized the benefits for the whole Municipality, and started helping. How much - usually with a maximum of 240,000.00. With these money and small donations from the side, we annually award over 80 students in sports competitions (medals, goblets), 20 students in art and literary competitions (commemorative gifts), 8 students for the best Slavic cake, the best table arrangement, 3 the most beautiful Slavic cakes from the ranks of citizens and 3 from the ranks of professional bakers (more valuable prizes of the type: electric bakeries and other electronic devices applicable for baking), and we host up to 7000 people and guests from at least three foreign countries !!!!
And these are activities:
It all starts with art and literary competitions for primary school students in the Republic of Serbia on given topics within the bakery.
It continues with sports competitions. For elementary school students - interesting "Games without borders", and for high school students: a competition in football for students, and in volleyball for students.
The main events of the bakery days last for three days and have been in the Calendar of events of our country for many years.
Every year at the "Bakery Days", in the third week of October, visitors can see:
- cultural-artistic program during all three days: two theater performances, choirs, cultural and artistic societies, plays, and everything else that shows the rich culture and tradition of our people. In addition to socializing, there is always an entertainment program: ethno fashion shows, fashion shows of the school creative workshop and clothing recycling, music points of music school students, etc.
As of this year, we have enriched this segment with a program in which all participating countries presented their culture and tradition. This year it was a joint performance of students from Slovenia, Bulgaria, Croatia and Serbia - “Touches of culture and traditions of the region!";
- various exhibitions: from exhibitions of famous artists, through unusual works of art, museum exhibits all the way to retrospectives of bakery days and exhibitions of art works by students from all over the country:
- ethnological exhibition "Folk handicrafts", exhibitions of various associations of citizens from all over Serbia, handicrafts, bakery products and everything that represents the culture and tradition of our people, through the centuries. But here is also the promotion of the potential of the Municipality, even rural tourism.
For the last two days, a tea party has been organized for all citizens of the Municipality and for all visitors;
- school settings on the theme "Traditional and Contemporary Bakery", In this segment of "Bakery Days", guests from abroad, from Maribor (Slovenia) have been participating for more than ten years; Vidin (Bulgaria), Dalia (Croatia), and there were even guests from Denmark, etc., and traditionally more than ten years have been participating in schools from Niš, Smederevo, Lapovo, Vlasotinac, Prokuplje, Paracin. Soko Banja, Krusevac, Razanj, Smederevska Palanka, Aleksandrovac, Pozarevac, etc .;
- a workshop by students at my Artistic Dough school, where students show interested visitors how to make figures for decorating celebrity cakes. For example, three years ago, on "RTS 1" in the show "This is Serbia", and on "Pink" in the "Dnevnik", I, with my students, taught students from Slovenia how to decorate a celebratory cake !!!;
- competition for the "Most Beautiful Slavic Cake", in the category of students, citizens, professional bakers, but also for the best arrangement of the celebratory table. Benefits: students develop all competencies that foster competitions, with the knowledge that whatever they choose after graduation (to get a job or stay home or retrain) that the knowledge they adopt can continue to apply. Parents and other people from the Municipality, as well as the whole country and beyond, are included. Let's say the curiosity was that a few years ago, one of the awards for the most beautiful Slavic cake went to school from Croatia !!!;
- the preservation of culture and tradition is also reflected in the ceremonial cutting and sanctification of the victorious slave cake by the Priests of the Brotherhood of St. Nicholas Church; Last-day lunch is also organized at church premises.
- There are also obligatory professional lectures within the event, which I have been organizing with the greatest pleasure for years. In addition to my colleagues, I hosted many eminent experts of our country, professors from faculties, doctors, as well as all those who can contribute to our profession, who pass on their knowledge to all visitors from home and abroad. This year there were 7 lecturers and 179 participants: colleagues and colleagues of visitors and participants of this event.
As I started, it's in order to finish in the same way: even today, fourteen years later, in my school there are no problems with enrolling students in the educational profile of a baker. The original goal has been achieved, and this has taken a long period of time.
I hope that based on everything else you could read here, you can conclude whether the other goals which were in front of me and in front of my colleagues fourteen years ago, have been met as well:
Promotion of the Agricultural School "Šumatovac",
-Affirmation of potentials available to the Municipality of Aleksinac…
-Multidisciplinary connecting of institutions and individuals engaged in various activities
-Promotion of cultural and sociological values of the modern social system
-Affirmation of culture in all segments of life, etc.
Or we have overcome them.
Support institutions (or how do we manage to organize such a big event with so little money):
Municipal Assembly of Aleksinac (already mentioned);
Center for Culture and Arts Aleksinac (free space and technical support);
Institution for rest and recreation of children Lipovac (refreshment for the competitors);
Sports and recreation center Aleksinac (free hall);
General Association of Entrepreneurs Aleksinac (connecting with participants outside schools);
Citizens' Association "Radinost" Aleksinac (fashion show);
City Theater "Teatar 91" (free theater performances);
Sponsors of Slavic Cake Awards:
- Lesaffre, France
- Dis Todorović, Raažanj;
- Adonis, Sokobanja.