ASTRA, first Romanian museum that receives European "Oscar" of museums

ASTRA is the first museum in Romania and the first open-air museum in Europe to have received the European "Oscar" of museums, as the great Luigi Micheletti Award of the European Museum Academy is also known, Director of the culture institution Ciprian Stefan announced on Monday. "There is also positive news in Romania, too. I think this award is first and foremost a prize of the museums in Romania, because Romania needed something like this, it needed an international recognition. (...) I dedicate this award firstly to the employees of the ASTRA Museum, but also to their families. (...) A powerful cultural institution such as the ASTRA Museum can come out with an international presence and recognition. It is an award that honors us. (... ) We are the only institution in Romania that has received this award in the last 26 years," Ciprian Stefan said. According to the quoted source, the ASTRA Museum was awarded the European "Oscar" of museums because the Sibiu museum "generated cultural programmes and offers through which it clearly differentiated itself from many other cultural institutions in the country and in Europe, by the message that it addressed the community." The ASTRA Museum in Sibiu has managed to exceed 600,000 visitors per year, precisely by creating cultural, educational and gastronomic events in recent years. The Sibiu Museum has competed with 19 other museums in Europe in the competition which annually bestows the Micheletti award. In the final, the ASTRA Museum has overtaken museums from Denmark, France and Russia. The ASTRA Museum proposes new techniques for heritage promotion and has cultural events in which it presents various communities in Romania, not only through the traditional houses that are in Sibiu, but by bringing craftsmen from those areas to present their traditions and customs. The ASTRA Museum in Sibiu means a lot to cultural tourism in the former 2007 European Capital of Culture. The institution hosts many important events for Sibiu and Romania. For example, this year, the Summit of the European People's Party was held in the open-air Museum in Sibiu, with the main European political leaders being hosted here. Obtaining the European "Oscar" of museums does not mean bonuses or salary increases for employees, according to the director of the ASTRA Museum, because the law doesn't allow it. The director of the ASTRA Museum expressed his disappointment that he was not congratulated by the Minister of Culture. AGERPRES (RO - author: Isabela Paulescu, editor: Oana Popescu; EN - author: Bogdan Gabaroi, editor: Rodica State)

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