Sunday, 20 February 2022

Balinjerada: Small-Scale Costumed Race Held in Opatija, Main Event Pushed to Summer

February 20th, 2022 - Despite the official Balinjerada race getting postponed, an informal version of the popular racing event was held in Opatija

Balinjerada, the iconic costumed soapbox race held each year in Opatija during the carnival festivities, had a preview of its 2022 edition on Sunday.

This year’s event was toned down significantly in comparison with its usual scale, only featuring a handful of costumed racers who took their handmade builds for a spin down the main street in Opatija.

Just as the International Carnival Parade in Rijeka was rescheduled for the summer because of epidemiological measures, so has the regular edition of the popular race in Opatija. Balinjerada will be back in its full glory later this year, as reported by Novi list.

And yet, one cannot ignore tradition. There’s a local saying that warns it’s ‘better to bring down the village than forsake old customs’, and so a few fervent carnival lovers donned colourful attire and brought a smile to all faces in town when they showed up with their makeshift vehicles in Opatija earlier today:

Video: Novi list / Marko Gracin

It was a ‘light’ Balinjerada, an informal version of the popular racing event, to carry us over until June 11th when the real thing is supposed to take place.

Balinjerada is a costumed race featuring homemade vehicles that run on ball bearings alone; they’re called balinjera in the local dialect, hence the name of the event.

It’s a manifestation rooted in creativity and enthusiasm, with the hilarious fleet proving year after year that imagination really knows no bounds. From simple scooters and tricycles to shaky carts of elaborate design that fit a dozen people, the vehicles are known to elicit roaring laughs from the delighted crowd of spectators lining the street.

Naturally, it’s much more entertaining in its traditional format, one that features ambitious builds and numerous racing teams in themed costumes. Watch the video below, filmed at the 2016 edition of Balinjerada, to get a better idea of what happens in Opatija during the carnival season. If nothing else, it has to be admired that most of these didn’t crash at the first turn:

Sunday, 11 February 2018

Carnival in Rijeka: 5th Season of the Year Ends with Spectacular Parade (Photos)

Thousands of costumed participants take over the city of Rijeka on February 11, 2018

Monday, 5 February 2018

One of a Kind: Meet Balinjera, Opatija's Costumed Soapbox Race (Photos)

A masquerade and race rolled into one, Balinjera is known as the crown jewel of Opatija's carnival season. A photo tribute on February 5, 2018

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Happy Fat Tuesday! Here is How Split will be Celebrating

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Sunday, 26 February 2017

VIDEO: Rijeka's Carnival Procession Boasts Over 10k Masks!

The 32nd International Carnival parade was held in Rijeka today.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

Split is Alive as Carnival Kids Take to the Streets this Afternoon

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Sunday, 19 February 2017

PHOTOS: Carnival Officially Begins in Split! Here's a Look at Opening Day

Carnival has officially begun in Split!

Friday, 17 February 2017

Carnival Opens on Pjaca Tomorrow!

Carnival in Split will open on Pjaca tomorrow at 11am.

Friday, 3 February 2017

Split Love Carnival 2017: The Full Guide

The 2017 Split Love Carnival will take place from Saturday, February 18 to Fat Tuesday, February 28.