Summer Empire Festival in Opočno

We invite you to spend a beautiful summer day at Opočno Castle, which is known mainly for its Renaissance appearance or Baroque interiors, but its integral part is also an Empire park, which was created at the instigation of the owner of the castle, Rudolf Josef Colloredo Mansfeld in 1816.

Our programme will be an opportunity for the people of Opočno and the surrounding area to learn about the dance culture of the time and enjoy a day in an authentic historical setting. Of course, anyone interested in Empire from anywhere is also welcome. If you wish, you can attend the event in period clothing. If you don't or don't want to, it doesn't matter at all - the whole day is meant to be an enjoyable experience first and foremost.

What to expect:

    10:00 a.m. dance lesson - the basics of English contra dancing

    13:30 Picnic in the castle park (self-provided);

    afternoon programme - outdoor period games, tour of the castle or park

    18:30 dinner (from own resources or by order)

    19:30 dance evening

You can attend just the dance lesson or just the dance evening, or have a full day ticket. The castle park is free of charge. Tickets (without dinner) can also be purchased at the castle box office.




More details about the programme:

10:00 Dance lessons - castle table

Participants will learn the basics of English contra dancing in an informal setting, which they will then use during the dance evening. For the lesson, you just need to wear comfortable clothes suitable for dancing - we recommend a longer skirt (max. ankle-length) for ladies, comfortable loose trousers for gentlemen. Shoes are best with flat soles or just a small heel - leave the ballroom pins at home this time.

English dancing is simple, using a mostly ordinary walk, sun step or canter sideways, so all ages can do it, and even people with no previous dance experience will soon get into the most basic elements. The dance program is suitable for children 12 years and older.

There will be a cloakroom available in the castle where you can also store your belongings during the day.

13:30 Picnic in the castle park

Picnic from your own brought supplies. Refreshments are available for purchase at the Vilém Café stand in the 1st courtyard. The picnic is already an opportunity to go out in period clothing - the setting of the castle park is very photogenic.

Wondering what to bring to the picnic? You can find inspiration here.

Afternoon programme

During the afternoon, you will have the opportunity to go on a tour of the castle (tickets must be purchased separately), explore the castle park or play some of the period outdoor games (equipment will be available for hire).

18:30 Dinner

Unfortunately, there aren't many options in Opočno for a decent dinner within walking distance of the castle. We have therefore arranged for a hot dinner to be delivered from a restaurant in the next village. Dinner can be ordered via the reservation form together with the tickets.

19:30 Dance evening - castle table

The day will culminate in an evening where participants will gather on the dance floor in the Tabernacle to experience the uplifting atmosphere of a period ball. If you don't have any Empire clothing, it's fine - casual formal wear will do. Just leave the stiletto-heeled ball shoes at home and wear more comfortable, flat-soled ones.

Each dance will be repeated or introduced first, and you'll hear hints during the actual performance. Most of the dances are relatively easy, but new or inexperienced dancers are encouraged to attend the morning workshop so that you can enjoy the evening's entertainment without worry.


Parking for overnight participants is available at Kupka Square or at the Winter Stadium.

Sleeping bag + mattress accommodation is available in the castle, surrounding hotels or guesthouses can be found according to your requirements.

Do you have any more questions?  Feel free to ask us:

Download the poster HERE.

Ladies and gentlemen, we look forward to seeing you!

Organized by Jane Austen CZ


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