Hundreds of men took part this year in the traditional men’s horo dance in the cold waters of the Tundzha River in Kalofer, Central Bulgaria, on Saturday. The Epiphany cross was thrown into the river by Father Dimitrii after a liturgy in the St. Archangel Michael church.
In line with tradition, the cross was handed over to one of the youngest members of the choir, 3-year-old Dimitar from Kalofer. His family wished all Bulgarians health and prosperity and urged them to keep traditions alive.
Then, as they do every year, the men of Kalofer entered the river, dressed in folk costumes, accompanied by a bagpipe and a drum. During the ritual, the men sang folk songs and waved the Bulgarian flag.
Thousands of people flocked to Kalofer from all over the country on Saturday, some of them also entering the waters of the Tundzha. As a rule, guests must wait for local participants to get out of the river.
The ritual of throwing a cross into a river took place across Bulgaria and a couple of hundred men raced to save it.