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You'd have had to have your head firmly in the sand for the past few months if you didn't know that Valencia is host city to The America's Cup this year. It is really getting close now, with the Louis Vuitton Regattas (round 13) taking place from the 16 April-12June followed by the actual event from the 23June to 07 July.

If you haven't been down to the Port of Valencia for a while, there is no better time than now. Take a leisurely stroll around the port and the lovely Malvarrosa Beach and just see what they are doing - There's an exhibition entitled Valencia and the Sea, have a drink or a meal in one of the excellent bars and restaurants. Take in the general atmosphere before the expected huge crowds descend on the area..

If you are like a lot of people who don't really understand what The America's Cup is all about, we have good news for you, we now have our very own Sailing Correspondent, Mike O'Neill, who, over the next weeks will be explaining it all and bringing us news on a regular basis. His first piece, is on the main thisisvalencia.com site now and certainly made things a lot clearer to the team here!

Read it here

IVAM (Instituto Valenciana de Arte Moderno) has the reputation of being one of the best Museums of its kind in the country. This week is its 18th Birthday, and to celebrate they have put together a great selection of special events and have mounted an extensive retrospective of the work of Valencian Sculptor Julio Gonzalez. The exhibition spreads over five of the galleries and takes you through every stage of his career.

The special events include new music, ballet, projections , Jazz concerts and a screening of Harold Lloyd's silent masterpiece Safety Last, with a live piano accompaniment - this is all happening over the next days until the 27th of February, the full calendar of events is here. Sorry about the late notice but we only went to the launch press conference on friday 16 Feb, it was all a big secret until then...

and you can read the thisivalencia.blogspot.com about things we've visited

SUNDAY 25 February is a busy day in the Fallas Calendar. It is the day of the Crida.

This is the day that the populous, natives and visitors alike, are invited to take part in Fallas.

The day for Falleros and Fallleras starts with the desperta - fireworks and bells at 0730 to wake them and remind them that it is time for a traditional breakfast in the Ayuntamiento (Town Hall Square). At 10 o'clock final of the Campeonato Fallero de Pelota Valenciana is played.

At one o'clock the brass bands of Fallas amass in the Plaza de la Virgen and march down through the Plaza de la Reina and Calle San Vicente to reassemble in the Ayuntamiento to strike up a rousing 'El Fallero' a pasadoble traditionally played throughout Fallas. At 2pm sharp (the only thing Valencians seem to get on time) there will be a wonderfully noisy Mascleta.

At 8pm everyone gathers around the Torres de Serrano and, led by the Fallera Mayor and her court, they celebrate San Jose and Fallas. It's a spectacular evening with music and light shows -and well worth seeing..

Fallas is also time for Bullfights at the Plaza de Toros in Valencia - the full timetable is here, along with a small introduction to the Art/sport/abberation (according to your point of view) and a glossary of bullfighting terms.


Much more now and in the coming weeks here

Here's a jolly good opportunity to get to know new Spanish Bands and understand the Spanish Music Scene. Vinarock has moved to Benicassim this year - April 27/28/29. It's a skate-orientated festie - ska, rap, reggae, indie and rock.

People you should really try and see are as follows;
La Mala Rodriguez - essential spanish rapper, flamenco roots etc
Mago de Oz - famous rock group - with bagpipes!
Rosendo - flamenco
Despistaos - indie band
La Excepcion - rap group, mtv europe music award winners - best spanish group
SFDK - rap
Bebe - one of Spain's most original singer/songwriters
Ojos de Brujo - ole ole modern flamenco

Click on the red circle to go to their website.

CHILDREN
The Palau de Congresos has Peter Pan this Saturday and Sunday 24/25February - A family show with singers, dancers and acrobatics - In Castellano, but chances are, even if you don't understand your kids will and hey! it's live theatre.
http://www.palcongres-vlc.com/index_eng.asp

ATTENTION CHOCOLATE LOVERS!
Get down to the City of Arts and Sciences from monday onwards if you love your chocolate! It is chocolate week! An exhibition of all things chocolate ending on the weekend of the 24-25 with workshops and lessons in how to cook and work with chocolate.
more information - in Spanish at www.cac.es

VALENCIA MUSEU OBERT
Valencia had a great idea 'Museu Obert' but no one really knows about it - look for the sign pictured, graffittied up on the right, wherever you see one of these, you can call the number - key in the number by the name of the monument and you can get a description (16 languages) of what you are looking at!
Your own personal guide to the city

NEWS
If you have something you want to share with the whole world, email it to us here. If you have suggestions for future issues or the main website - email us here

ADVERTISE WITH US
Want to spread the word about your product or service - advertise on this newsletter and/thisisvalencia.com - excellent rates - email for more information here

BLOG
Have you seen the blog recently? It's full of little snippets and interesting facts and photographs - well worth a look.

Welcome to thisisvalencia.com Newsletter Number 3!

It's another packed edition!

Not only is Valencia hosting the America's Cup, not only is the wonderful Fallas almost upon us, not only is there talk of the Monte Carlo style Grand prix next year and the confirmed World Athletics Championships in 2008, but now Valencia has been named European Capital of the Tree. So put 10th March in your diaries and head down to Jardines de Real (the Park by The Museo de Belles Artes) for a day of activities and a concert.

This week is the 18th Birthday of the modern art museum, IVAM and there are performances all week to celebrate.

Festival Veo is happening all over the city, Concerts, street performances, happenings - get more information from their website . www.festivalveo.com or go to the Plaza de la Reina to their tent for the full programme.

And don't forget the brand new, easier to navigate, information packed, thisisvalencia.com - we think (we hope!) you'll be impressed. We've designed it so that it is much easier to find your way around, and back.

There are lots more listings, restaurants, by area and with indications as to price. Where to see films in English (original version) There's an A-Z of the all of the clubs and discotheques of the city. A definitive guide to shopping, shopping centres, where to buy books and Music, food, antiques. Markets around Valencia and what days they are on.

And so much more, building every day.

WHAT'S ON AT THE CINEMA IN ENGLISH THESE NEXT TWO WEEKS ?

There's a great selection of films in English this week, at Babel, Albatros and Cine Cite.
Peter O'Toole's Oscar nominated performance in Venus, an odd film about an old man falling in love with a young girl, with a great performance from Leslie Phillips as well.

There's still a chance to see Helen Mirren's fantastic performance (also garlanded) as The Queen. Renee Zellweger stars as Beatrix Potter in the film Miss Potter, a quirky, magical film by all accounts.

Shortbus, mmmm, this has to be the rudest film to ever go on general release, by that you know it's all about sex.

The Last King of Scotland, another Oscar nominated performance by Forrest Whittaker as Idi Amin.

Little Children, Kate Winslett stars in this unusual thriller.

Then there is Bobby, Little Miss Sunshine(very funny) and Scoop, Woody Allen's latest - There's always a Woody Allen on in Spain, they just love him.

More and links to the cinemas timetables here

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Valencia, Tree Capital of Europe

'The urban tree, a richness, a responsibility
and a pleasure for all'

Valencia signed a Declaration in 2000 of the Rights to the Tree in the City as a commitment to trees. Trees are essential to the city and are one of the most indispensable elements for the human being, but they are getting more and more scarce. Now Valencia has been chosen by the European Arboricultural Council (EAC) and the Spanish Association of Arboriculture (AEA) to host the Tree Capital of Europe in 2007.  

From 5th to 10th March 2007, the Concejalía del Área de Medio Ambiente y Desarrollo Sostenible (city’s department responsible for environment and sustainable development) and the Spanish Association of Arboriculture (AEA) will carry out a wide range of events that will turn Valencia into the Tree Capital of Europe.

10th MARCH IS TREE DAY IN THE JARDINES DE REAL (VIVEROS)
European Tree Climbing Competition
Children’s Activities
Concert
Arboriculture and Related Items Trade Fair

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And now, without further ado, this latest newsletter, we do hope you enjoy it - if you do, tell your friends or better still, sign them up to the mailing list here. (signup@thisisvalencia.com)

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Don't be afraid to email us (newsletter@thisisvalencia.com)and give us your thoughts on anything you read and anything you think we, and therefore others, should know about.

www.thisisvalencia.com

www.thisisvalencia.blogspot.com

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