The largest ever worldwide gathering of Estonians, Esto 2019 aims to bring together Estonians and estophiles from around the world, establishing new international connections and reinforcing the bonds of our shared heritage and culture by celebrating our global Estonian identity together.
The tradition of ESTO dates back to 1972, when Estonians living in exile around the world, gathered in Toronto, Canada, to celebrate their culture and heritage, together. The primary focus of ESTO was to maintain Estonian language and culture abroad during the occupation of Estonia, when social and cultural interaction were outlawed by Soviet authorities. The fundamental importance of ESTO has not changed. Today, ESTO brings together Estonians and their friends from around the world to foster greater global engagement between our communities and develop global Estonian identity and heritage. ESTO encourages all Estonians to celebrate our nation’s achievements abroad and at home over the past century.
ESTO has been held, roughly, every four years in cities around the world. In 2019, ESTO comes back home, organized in coordination with the XXVII General Song Festival and the XXth Folk Dancing Festival, taking place July 4th-7th, 2019, to create the largest ever gathering of global Estonians, ever, anywhere in the world. The jubilee gathering marks 150 years since the first song festival and the 20th National Folk Dancing Festival. ESTO 2019 is also an official event commemorating and celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Republic of Estonia.
By coordinating its timing with the Song and Dance Festival, ESTO 2019 offers a historically unique opportunity for Estonians around the world to celebrate their culture, heritage and international achievements.
Recognizing the global diversity and needs of our participants, the Esto2019 program will be provided in multiple languages to ensure maximum accessibility.
We look forward to meeting in Tallinn for ESTO 2019!