On Saturday 17th May, Estonian museums will open their doors to visitors for a night of special events and exhibitions, celebrating the Night of Museums in Estonia for the sixth year running. In 2014, the Museum Night will take place under an umbrella theme of “Stars in the Night” or, in Estonian, “Öös on tähti”.

Poster for the Night of Museums.

Poster for the Night of Museums.

There will be more than 130 across Estonia participating in the programme – but this year also brings a number of new additions to the list. There are churches, archives, exhibition galleries and even the whole village of Ääsmäe involved in offering a special Museum Night programme. For the first time during the event, Tallinn Botanic Gardens will also be opening their doors to museum night visitors.

As always, there are several new museums. One of these is the Estonian Firefighting Museum in Tallinn, which will open its 11-storey tower for the general public for the first time. The evening will include special tours and storytelling about the remarkable fire station building, where the museum is housed. The programme will be in Estonian, but the panoramic view from the top of the tower will translate into any language.

There are interesting events across all the museums, but among some of the more intriguing is the propaganda-themed “Red Stars in the Night” at the Estonian History Museum’s Maarjamäe palace. Visitors will be invited to look into how propaganda and information wars were waged 90 years ago. There will also be a special workshop where participants get to make their own propaganda leaflet. The programme is in Estonian, but all exhibitions are English-speaker friendly.

Some special programmes in English are held at St. John the Baptist’s Hospital/Alms-house and at the KGB museum at Hotel Viru in Tallinn.

Most of the museums participating will have their permanent and current exhibitions open for public in addition to the special Museum Night programmes, and will keep their doors open from 6 pm to 11 pm.

More information on the event can be found here.