Kazan, Russia— A small group of dedicated bicyclists held a Peace Road event in the Russian Republic of Tatarstan, traveling 120 kilometers over three days.
The event, which took place from August 5 to 7, 2023, received more than 3,000 views on social networks.
The cycling project, titled "Peace Road: The Way to the Homeland of the Poet Derzhavin," was organized jointly by UPF-Russia and the Union of Cyclists of the Republic of Tatarstan, with support from Tatarstan’s Ministry of Culture.
The project was designed to promote unity, cultural exploration, and religious understanding while traversing the historical paths of the renowned Russian Enlightenment poet Gavriil Derzhavin (1743-1816).
The project brought together 30 participants, including Orthodox pastors who met the cyclists at various churches along the route. The project was a collaborative effort, with key figures such as Ildus Yanyshev, an Ambassador for Peace and head of the Union of Cyclists of the Republic of Tatarstan, co-organizing the event.
Damir Safin, the vice president of the Union of Cyclists of the Republic of Tatarstan and an Ambassador for Peace, personally participated in the event. Dmitry Samko, coordinator of the Peace Road project in Russia and leader of UPF for the Moscow Region, was the main organizer. Anastasia Ogorodova, the UPF representative in Tatarstan, led on-site preparations and actively participated together with her family.
The project began in Kazan, the capital of Tatarstan, on August 5. Participants covered 30 km on the first day despite scorching 30 degree heat.
- In the village of Sokura, participants visited the Orthodox Christian Church of the Intercession of the Russian Patriarchate, engaging in conversation with Mother Superior Nadezhda.
- At the village of Zimnyaya Gorka, veteran athlete Sergei Serebrennikov welcomed participants with Uzbek pilaf, and he was awarded an Ambassador for Peace certificate by Dmitry Samko.
- The tour continued to the Orthodox Church of the Epiphany in Yegoryevo village, where the parents of the poet Derzhavin are buried. Pastor Father Sergei gave his blessing for the Peace Road event.
Participants journeyed from the village of Derzhavino to the town of Laishevo, covering a distance of 35 km.
- In Laishevo, the participants explored the local History Museum, gaining insights into the poet Derzhavin's heritage and history.
The third day marked the final stretch, covering a distance of 55 km and culminating in Kazan, the capital, at a roundtable at the National Museum of the Republic of Tatarstan. The head of the Department of Culture addressed the Peace Road participants, congratulating them on the successful completion of the Peace Road event.
The "Peace Road: to Derzhavin's Homeland" cycling project served as a platform for unity, cultural engagement, and religious connections. Participants journeyed through historical sites, engaged with local communities, and fostered relationships across regions and generations. The project's successful conclusion at the National Museum of the Republic of Tatarstan underscored its significance in promoting peace, understanding, and cultural appreciation.