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“Those who haven’t brought kids to the Zagreb Fair, they don’t know what suffering is” used to be the most often stated sentence last week in the OPENS offices. And, when we hit off towards Zagreb, we realised why.

The departure was planned for 6 a.m. (the first problem), because on 12 a.m., we were supposed to be at the 15 th Culture Fair in the student centre in Zagreb. The small OPENS excursion had the task (the second problem) to educate every passer-by who helps with the direction to good food or student centre, everyone who show us direction or help us in any other way – on what the European Youth Capital is and why the title is in Novi Sad the following year.

So, after around hundred gifted badges, after 380 kilometres (the third problem) and the initial fascination by the amazing Student Centre which serves the citizens of Zagreb, we had the wall ready for the mural and we realised why OPENS was actually on the road.

“I have been following the story about the European Youth Capital for a while now, and since that I have been active in the youth sector at the European level for some time, when the invitation came, we were happy to join you. We are glad that a city in the region received this title, and we are happy that this does not remain within the borders of your country but you have decided to actually spread the whole region and to come here, to Zagreb and that you will go to other cities”, Marko Boko, the organiser of the Grafiti na Gradele Festival summarised.

One of the main ideas of the “OPENS on the Road – Culture Opens its Door” project is to include local organisations in each city. These are our partners and local hosts. In Zagreb, these were Grafiti na Grdele and Student Centre.

“This is an excellent opportunity for your artists to meet our artists. To see what is going on at the graffiti scene, and for you to meet our scene. For all that, we can’t wait the year of 2019 because we know there will be a lot more cooperation”, Marko Boko adds.

The purpose of the OPENS on the Road project is to promote peace and friendship among the young people in the region, but also to encourage young people in the region to actively participate in their communities, as well as their innovativeness and creativity”, Valentina Antić, International Cooperation Coordinator.

So, our peace and friendhsip campaign begin in Zagreb, and in the next two years, we will visit 9 more cities and open the door of Novi Sad to all young people. Petar Petrović Piros, the artist, designed a series of murals, and each picture which will be pictured on the road in the next two years misses a part. One puzzle. The puzzle which will wait for us in Novi Sad, at the end of the road.

“The main pillars of the OPENS program contain promotion of Europe and European values, as well as the celebration of energy and creativity of young people. That is the source from which we take inspiration and base of everything we do”, Valentina Antić adds.

We packed such inspiration, saved it and brought it with ourselves from Zagreb, along with the missing puzzle. We will pack all that again soon, and hit the road. Sarajevo, get ready! Đes ba, Gari? (What’s up, Gari?)

Marko Boko, the “Grafiti na Gradele” Festival organiser: I do not think the title of European Youth Capital is an opportunity for the young people from Serbia only, but we can see on the example of this project that this is great for the whole region.

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OPENS program in Novi Sad for years selflessly shares and supports youth energy. Whether it is through the festivals, sport activities, education or activism the strength of the youth is

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