Helikon Monument, Helikon Park

Helikoni Emlékmű, Helikon Park
The Helikon Park was given to the town of Keszthely for eternal usage by Tasziló Festetics in 1883. He had the given area converted to a park suitable for that time demands and he undertook its maintenance also.

The promenade leading straight as an arrow from Balaton street across the Helikon Park to the Balaton shore, the bath and the port. Next to the promenade a monument with cupola is standing on 8 columns being raised for the respect of the 100th anniversary of the modern Helikon Festival.

Helikon Festival

The history of Helikon Festival goes back to 1804 when in Georgikum and in secondary grammar school prosperous literary schools were holding celebrating. The agronomist students and the secondary school students –among them who felt enough talented –were competing in recitation of poetry, delivering lectures and in theatre plays. These playing were mainly students’ club performances. At these festivals mostly the teacher staff made their appearance.

In 1816 Dániel Berzsenyi proposed the idea of the ’little Hungarian Weimar’ to Keszthely which was the Hungarian literary centre – after he had experienced dreadfully that one of the publications of Georgikon he happened to read was written in German language. Being influenced by this idea Count György Festetics organised the Helikon Festival which he became the main sponsor of. The organisers and the judges – with other words the members of the jury- were given honorarium and the participants were given rewards and prizes. Beside Berzsenyi, Kisfaludy and Dukai Takách Judit graced the event with their presence.

The Helikon Festival got to its end with the death of the Maecenas Count in 1819. In the 20s and 30s of the last century happened some attempts to revive the tradition and in 1957 this attempt was successful. Since 1992 in foundational frame, it is organised in every second year bearing name of Modern Secondary School Helikon Festival. For this festival all the Transdanubian secondary schools are invited, students can compete with each other in 18 artistic categories.

Pictures from Helikon Monument, Helikon Park