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2013 - The Year in Review

Australia/Waitangi Day, Thursday 31 January

A multi-national crowd of over 80 guests helped the Australian and New Zealand communities in the Czech Republic celebrate Australia Day and Waitangi Day in style at the Hilton Hotel Prague on Thursday 31st January. Highlights included presentations by New Zealand Second Secretary James Anderson, Australian Deputy Ambassador Melanie Davis and Australian Senior Trade Commissioner Steve Rank who presented a very special Australia Day award to our own Austrade representative and Honorary Consul Petr Vodvarka. And nobody will forget the spellbinding performance given by “Nervous Doll Dancing” Francesca Mountfort. All while enjoying some great Australian and New Zealand wines courtesy of event partner Club Vivanova and food from Czechouse restaurant!

CANZA Hockey Night, Sunday 3 February

50 members of CANZA and BCC – including some enthusiastic kids - met up on Sunday 3 February at the HC Sparta Prague VIP hockey bar for the big Sparta v Plzeň Extraliga match which – unfortunately for the Sparta fans in the crowd - resulted in a 4-2 win for Plzeň, bringing Sparta’s eleven-match winning streak to an end. Pictures with thanks to Kostas Joanidis. Additional hockey nights were held on Tuesday 19 February and Tuesday 26 February.

Austrade Exhibit, Saturday 23 February/Sunday 24 February

CANZA and the Australian Trade Commission (Austrade) organised a stand at the Franchising Fair in Prague held on 23 and 24 February 2013. The stand was shared by Austrade, Gloria Jean´s Coffees, Diva and CANZA. CANZA is proud to co-operate with Austrade in supporting the growth of Australian-Czech trade and business links.  Pictured – L-R – Mr Igor Bolshakov, Head of Franchise and Concession (Diva); Mr Jan Brejcha, Business Development Manager (Australian Trade Commission in Prague).

CANZA Wine Dinner, Thursday 14 March

In 2013 we again held a series of events in conjunction with Club Vivanova featuring premium Australian and New Zealand wines. The dinner on 14 March was held at Celeste restaurant; other events through the year included a Wine and Beer evening at Jama Restaurant on Friday 22 March; a Neighbours Drinks Night at Como Restaurant on Friday 24 May; a Victorian Wine Degustation at the Augustine Hotel on Thursday, 24 October and an Australian Wine Masterclass in the Private Wine Cellar of the luxury five star Mandarin Oriental Hotel Prague on Thursday, 21 November. We also co-organized two summer BBQ events together, both at the Kempinski Hotel, the Great Aussie BBQ on Thursday 27 June and the Great Kiwi BBQ on Thursday 25 July. 

Kiwi Film Fest, Friday 12 April – Sunday 14 April

 One of the highlights of the year so far was the Kiwi Film Fest co-organized by CANZA and the New Zealand Government which attracted around 1000 guests from 12-14 April. Now CANZA is proud to support the release of a short film showing the highlights of the event. Thanks to everyone who made the event such a great success!

Sarah Blasko, Monday 22 April – Palac Akropolis.

CANZA was invited to present a showcase of Australian food at the premiere concert of well-known Australian singer Sarah Blasko and we did not disappoint, showering guests with Minties, Vegemite sandwiches and Bundaberg Rum! We also helped promote shows by New Zealand hop hop artist Ladi6 on 10 September and Aussie comedians the Umbilical Brothers on October 16 (Brno) and 17 (Prague).

ANZAC Day Events, Thursday 25 April – Monday 29 April

Our ANZAC Day commemorations started with a fantastic gourmet buffet dinner for around 40 guests at Le Grill restaurant, paired with premium Australian and New Zealand wines courtesy of New World Wine professional Brad Mitton, organized in conjunction with Club Vivanova. This was followed on Sunday 28 April with another instalment in our traditional riverside BBQ events commemorating ANZAC Day at the VK Slavia rowing club, where over 100 guests enjoyed live music from New Zealand jazz group Beyondsemble, kids entertainment and amazing BBQ food from Italian-Australian chef David Lagomarsino of La Gastronomia! Finally, on Monday 29 April we held our traditional memorial ceremony, co-organized with the Governments of Australia and New Zealand and with the kind co-operation of the Armed Forces of the Czech Republic at the Commonwealth War Graves at Olsanske cemetery, Prague.

Prague Fringe Festival, May 24-June 1

CANZA regularly sponsors the Australian and New Zealand performances at the Prague Fringe Festival and 2013 was no exception. This year saw two great productions from Australia, “Play Actually – A Non Rom Com” and “False Friends“.

Prague Vikings Invitational International Rugby League Nines, Saturday 4 May

CANZA was proud to sponsor the Prague Barbarian Vikings Rugby Football Club again in 2013. The International Rugby League Nines was their major event for the Prague Vikings rugby league team, featuring teams from the Czech Republic and overseas. CANZA also supported the Barbarians’ beach touch rugby team the Hot Rocks, who managed third place in the Annual Prague Beach Rugby competition on27-28 July (see: http://www.ceskatelevize.cz/sport/nejnovejsi-videa/236253-plazovemu-ragby-kralovali-hraci-plazovi-libovci/).

Midsummer Beer Garden Drinks, Friday 14 June

Riegerovy Sady played host to the return of the CANZA pub nights, with around 30 people meeting up for a midsummer evening beer or three! The reintroduction of these events has proven very popular, with further drinks nights scheduled on Friday 6 September at the Vyšehrad beer garden and “down the rabbit hole” in one of Prague’s cellar pubs Vinarna U Sudu on Friday 15 November.

CANZA Czech Ashes, Saturday 27 July

Our CANZA cricket team made up mainly of Australians living in the Czech Republic took on the might of the English expats and prevailed with an 8 wicket victory at Vinor cricket ground in Prague. CANZA supported Czech cricket in a number of ways during 2013, including as a sponsor of the Prague Barbarians cricket club (www.praguebarbarianscc.cz), the Vinor cricket ground and as co-organizer of various events for junior cricket, including the Family Cricket Picnic on Sunday 5 May, the CANZA Junior Cricket Clinic from 28-30 August, and the Junior International Team Training day on 19 September.

Back to Business, Thursday 19 September

Co-organized with the International Business Forum at Hotel Jalta. This was a great, action-packed event featuring an exceptional buffet prepared by COMO's Executive Chef and a sushi demonstration and sushi-rolling competition. It was also an opportunity for members to present their business to guests.

New Zealand Gala Dinner, Thursday 26 September

Organized at the Augustine Hotel in conjunction with Club Vivanova and the New Zealand Embassy and in the presence of New Zealand Ambassador to the Czech Republic H.E. Peter Rider. We organized several other events and initiatives with the New Zealand Embassy, including a special reception for the Kiwi Film Fest on Friday 12 April and a reception marking 20 years of diplomatic representation between New Zealand and the Czech Republic on Thursday, 3 October 2013 featuring a performance of classical music, including by Australian and New Zealand composers, by NZ Trio.

AFL Grand Final Breakfast, Saturday 28 September

In conjunction with CAAFL, the annual AFL Grand Final Breakfast at Belushi’s Bar and Grill gave Aussies and Czechs in Prague the chance to see the live telecast of the Australian Rules Grand Final over a hot breakfast. CANZA is proud to be a long-standing supporter of Australian Rules Football in the Czech Republic.

Dual Citizenship Initiative, Sunday 6 October

CANZA launched a support group for Australians and New Zealanders wishing to have more information about the change in law taking effect on 1 January 2014 making it possible to have a dual citizenship in the Czech Republic. The group numbers around 20 participants and is continuing to welcome new members.

CANZA Getaway, 16-17 November

Around 20 guests stayed over at the only Australian owned and operated chateau hotel in the Czech Republic, Hotel Chateau Hostačov (www.zamek-hostacov.com), to enjoy a gourmet dinner featuring seasonal, locally sourced ingredients accompanied by wine from the family’s own estate in the Margaret River region of Western Australia!

CANZA Christmas Carols, Saturday 7 December

As always this was a really enjoyable and well attended event which was held as usual at St Clements church. The proceeds of the evening were donated to Unicef.


CANZA Annual Charity Ball

As always the year concluded with the Annual Charity Ball.  For more on the ball, see the 2013 Ball page