The fate of Hlohovec as the future ECOC 2026 is in the hands of the evaluation committee

8.1. 2021 Život v Hlohovci.       On December 14, 2020, in cooperation with the well-known Hlohovec native singer and artist Richard Müller, Hlohovec ceremoniously launched first Bid Book for the candidacy of our town for the ECOC 2026 title . The singer himself, who appears as the godfather, symbolically christened the bid book with hawthorn and water from river Váh.  This happened on the eve of the officila deadline. The launching ceremony took place within Festival of (un) canceled culture at the Empire Theater in Hlohovec. Prescribed 20 copies of bidbook were submitted by 20 co-authors of the Hlohovec´s application on Tuesday 15th of December in the Ministry of Culture.  Hlohovec is the smallest town from the list of Slovak candidates competing for the title of European Capital of Culture for 2026.  However, this aspect may not be a disadvantage, quite the contrary. The Slovenian city of Nová Gorica, located on the border with Italy, was one of the smallest applicants, which last year won the title of European Capital of Culture 2025. The fact that Hlohovec really has potential was also mentioned in the introductory words of Mayor Miroslav Kollár directly at the city's application . "Hlohovec was once named the Free City of Váh -" Freistadt an der Waag "and this project can help us become an open, free European town. Sure, we are a small town and this is a big project, which is why I am glad that the biggest living  Hlohovecian not only by our height, but also by popularity - Richard Müller - laucnhed us on a journey with our project.” The famous Slovak singer played his part in the Empire Theater that evening the most famous hits, which not only pleased his audience, but also left the audience convinced that Hlohovec is a town full of culture that could continue to develop positively through the project. The first official step of the town of Hlohovec was a the submission of the first application to the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic. This took place on 15th of December 2020, accompanied by twenty Hlohovecs, who personally submitted 20 applications. In addition, the whole process was documented and photos and videos you can find on the city's social networks. "The candidacy is far from over with it´s launching and the submission of the application, on the contrary. We are starting to prepare a presentation of the project for an international jury, which is just as important as the application itself. We believe that our project is so original and creative that it will overcome the often communicated handicap of a small town, "adds Juraj Surma, the director of the Hlohovec - European Capital of Culture 2026 project.  The presentation of the application of our candidacy at the Ministry of Culture will take place on February 2 at 15:30. It's a week before the ministry announced. The presentation will last 30 minutes. For the next 60 minutes, team members will answer dozens of jury questions. By the end of February 2021, we will know the results of the evaluation of the first round and it will be clear whether Hlohovec is shortlisted. Finally, additional thanks to two authors of the project intentions - Nikola Pisarčíková and Anton Tomašovič, with whom we conclude the list published in the December issue.