It is one of the oldest traditional events in Lithuania, the traditions of which the people of Zarasai district are trying to nurture.
Back in the 19th century it started as a local Duset entertainment – after the holidays, farmers came to the church in horse-drawn sleighs or carriages, and argued over whose horse was prettier, then started competing over whose horse was faster. Little by little, these friendly disputes turned into real races, in which it was prestigious to participate, so horse sports began to become popular in Dusetos. This race turned into an organized competition in 1905.
Over the years, the Sarti horse race has grown into a republican trotting competition, which attracts athletes not only from Lithuania, but from all over Europe. This year we are expecting guests from Latvia, Estonia and Finland.
Of course, athletes compete not only for honor, the prize fund is also important for everyone. This year, there will be 7 races, that’s why the sponsors of the festival have set up so many prizes. The main organizer of the festival and the founder of the prize is Zarasai District Municipality.
This year, the organizers of the festival are the municipal administration of Zarasai district, the Ministry of Agriculture and the Republican League of Racing Horses.
In addition to the certified folk art fair, guests could also move along with the folk music of the Aukštaitija region, taste traditional dishes, and a themed children’s play area was set up for children, where educators are waiting for them.
In the evening, the Dusetai Art Gallery will invite you to visit the international traditional exhibition “Horse in Art”, and after that, the band “Baltos varnos” will perform in the concert hall of the Dusetai Cultural Center.
Ice casting works started on January 12. Every day, from early morning until late in the evening, if it is more than -10 degrees below zero, the stable staff poured ice. Water is collected from Lake Sarta, transported to the Dusetai Hippodrome and sprayed on the path, the length of which is as much as 1,600 meters.