Graduates of Minsteres Latviešu Ģimnāzija, the former Latvian preparatory school in the German city of Münster, are reuniting this weekend to celebrate the school’s 50th anniversary—and Latvian Foreign Minister Artis Pabriks says they should keep up such traditions.
The school, founded in 1946 in Detmold by Latvian exiles, moved to Münster in 1957. A reunion to mark the anniversary runs from June 28 to July 1 and is expected to include cultural and athletic activities, as well as an exhibit of the school’s history and a concert by the Latvian rock group Pērkons.
While Pabriks himself will not attend, Daiga Krieva, a representative of the Latvian consulate in Bonn, will be there. She will read a greeting from Pabriks, who urges MLĢ alumni and their friends to keep up the tradition of organizing gatherings in countries where Latvians live, according to a press release from the foreign ministry.
More than 125 alumni and guests were planning to attend the celebration as of June 3, according to the Web site of the Latvian Center Münster, which operates in the former school. The school ceased operation in 1998, seven years after Latvia regained its independence from the Soviet Union. In its final years, the school’s focus changed and it saw students from Latvia study there.
The school’s legacy, however, is as a training ground for many Latvian youths who went on to be involved in Latvian exile organizations and, beginning in the late 1980s, returning to Latvia to work with the independence movement and then becoming involved with government, business or nonprofit organizations.
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