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Greetings from sunny Arizona!  As in the past few years I have again attended the "Eesti Vabariigi Aastapäev"  gathering of local Arizona Estonians in the Phoenix area. For me it is a 400 mile round trip by car even though I also live in the same state of Arizona, but worth going to every year. The annual event took place in Mesa, AZ, this past Sunday, 21 February  at the home of Jim and Linda Abbott, Linda's mother having come from Estonia. Also, this year it was drizzling rain which happens quite infrequent in the desert climate. There was plenty of ethnic foods such as hapukapsa supp, sült  and verivorstid along with desserts like kringel and much, much more. It was a very joyous occasion among folks who come from afar and many who see each other only once a year.

World Artists Experiences and the International Division of Maryland’s Office of the Secretary of State, in conjunction with Frostburg University, Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, Southern Maryland Center for Higher Education, Salisbury University, and Towson University, invite the public to attend free screenings of five international films, one each from Argentina, Estonia, Korea, Nigeria, and Russia. The Bridges to the World International Film Series is a statewide, month-long initiative in recognition of the State’s global reach and a reflection of those connections here in Maryland.
The series will run for five weeks from February 8 through March 12 at five venues throughout the state. Each film will be introduced, screened, and followed by a discussion.  Presentations begin at 7:00 p.m.  All films will be shown with English subtitles.  
The schedule for the Estonian film “December Heat” (“Detsembrikuumus”) is as it follows:

The Estonian Institute offers scholarships to holders of a doctoral degree or Master’s or to Doctoral students who are citizens of a foreign state and are studying at a university abroad, to write a research paper on an Estonia-related topic or to gather material for it.
The deadlines are March 1, and October 1, 2010.

The scholarship is designated to cover living expenses, tuition fees and costs directly connected with the research; it may be granted for a period ranging from five to ten months. The scholarship for a five-month period is 40 000 EEK (appr. $3,400).
Knowledge of Estonian is an advantage but not a requirement.

SALISBURY, MD---Salisbury University has established a new study abroad program with the University of Tartu (UT), one of the most prestigious centers of learning in northern Europe. Ranked as one of the world’s top 600 universities, UT is a robust research institution with a beautiful and historic campus dating back to the 1600s.
Starting in the fall of 2010, “Salisbury Abroad: Estonia” will allow SU students to live in Tartu and explore European studies and business at UT for the same cost as in-state tuition and housing in Salisbury.  Located on the banks of the Emajõgi River, Tartu is known as a city of young people with a rich heritage and culture.

The Embassies of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia in association with the U.S.-Baltic Foundation invites members of Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian communities in the U.S. to participate in the annual basketball tournament “Embassy Cup 2010” on April 17, 2010.
We host this tournament on the occasion of the 20th  anniversary of Independence restoration in Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia.

Although their actual name is ice resurfacing vehicle, most people in North America know them by the memorable and unique name Zamboni, since the first such device was developed by Frank Zamboni in California in 1949. Although now an internationally registered trademark, and not the only manufacturer of ice resurfacers, the generic colloquialism has stuck. Even jäähooldusmeister Vello Altma, responsible for cleaning and maintaining the artificial rink at Pirita, knew of Zambonis and everything else to do with cooling and flooding. When I saw this hulking resurfacing beast's tank being filled with water as I approached on skis, I had to take off my suusad and go investigate. Five minutes later I was in Vello's warm little "office" surrounded by a thousand gadgets, necessary for the maintenance of tehisjää, artificial ice.

gov.ee, 14 January 2010 – At today’s session, the Government of Estonia  approved the goals in the European Union during the Spanish Presidency in the first half of 2010. In total, the government formulated 5 subjects that are important for Estonia.
The main goal of Estonia in 2010 is joining the Eurozone. In the first half-year, a positive evaluation is expected from the European Commission and the European Central Bank in regards to Estonia’s readiness to adopt the Euro, and the approval of a relevant recommendation by the Economic and Financial Affairs Council of the European Union and the European Council. Estonia will continue domestic work for achieving readiness for the Euro, as well as the active introduction and reasoning behind its readiness for the Euro.

4 January (BNS) - Estonia's Eesti Energia power utility has exported electricity to both Finland and Lithuania in the first days of the new year.
Eesti Energia CFO Margus Kaasik told BNS that a contract had been signed with Lithuania for a concrete amount. In addition to Lithuania, Eesti Energia is currently also selling electricity on the Nordpool electricity exchange in Finland, but amounts depend on the market price of the concrete hour.
"In some hours we sell more to Finland than to Lithuania and in another hour less," Kaasik said.
In connection with the closure of the Ignalina nuclear power plant, Eesti Energia wants to increase export and win 10-15% of the Lithuanian energy market.
Eesti Energia board chairman Sandor Liive has said that Eesti Energia is hoping to sell electricity for one billion kroons (EUR 64 mln) to Lithuania during the year.

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