Thursday, July 8, 2010

Enjoy Paris in London

As France's Les Blues bombed out of the World Cup, a disgruntled President Sarkozy ( citing austerity measures) announced the cancellation of the annual Bastille day celebrations at the Elysée Palace on July 14th. Not to worry. Parisians eager to enjoy their national holiday can now hop on a Eurostar to London, where, 3 days early, the largest Bastille day celebration outside of France will take place.

London is now home to about half a million French people. Not surprising then that they have their own lifestyle group and London-French newspaper-Macadam. The group was created by Caroline Sivilia, who came to Britain 6 years ago in order to set up her own business and share the French culture with the British. The Bastille event is run by Macadam and is now in its second year. It takes place this Sunday at Battersea Park.

Among the attractions are a can-can show and a revue given by the Lido dancers, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the world famous Champs-Élysées-based night spot.  Partygoers can eat and drink at a pop-up bistro, dance to retro accordion music or snack on French tarts and treats at an outdoor market specialising in regional delicacies. Sports lovers who can tear themselves away from the World Cup Final can instead watch a petanque (a form of boules) tournament.

Festivities start at 10:30 AM with a hearty breakfast of croissants and crepes served, de rigueur, on red and white checked tablecloths. Learn some traditional French dancing skills and work up an appetite for lunch at the free 'bal poplaire', followed by an afternoon of games and races, such as the 'Course des Garçons du Café', in which waiting staff race while balancing trays laden with pints of frothy beer!

For more information on this event please visit the Bastille London Garden Party website.

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