Initiated by the local community, the Lake Võrtsjärve Fish and Crafts Fair brings together enthusiasts from all over Estonia


On 7 June 2014 from 10 am to 5 pm, the 4th Lake Võrtsjärve Fish and Crafts Fair will be held on the premises of the Võrtsjärve Lake Visitor Centre in the Jõesuu recreation area located 40 km outside Tartu on the road from Tartu to Viljandi. The Fair is organised by the Lake Võrtsjärve Foundation and Võrtsjärve Fisheries Development Agency.

With the first event having taken place in 2009 at the initiative of local fishermen, this year’s Lake Võrtsjärve Fish and Crafts Fair is already sixth in line.

Through the years, various workshops have been held on the fairground in cooperation with different organisations and local entrepreneurs and an effort has been made to present the region of Lake Võrtsjärve as a shoreline district with long-standing fishing traditions as well as a residential and recreation area. The subject of safety has taken a central place, with volunteers and lake lifeguards introducing visitors to safety equipment and giving advice and help for safe navigation on Lake Võrtsjärve. With top experts in the field present, the fish dish kitchen workshop has provided visitors with tips for cooking a great fish soup or putting together a lake-themed picnic basket.

Many of the Fairs have been attended by our international partners, in cooperation with whom we have carried out various projects and activities.

In 2014, visitors will be offered workshops, conducted by non-profit association Loovustuba, on making musical instruments, pens and paper out of reed, boats and dolls out of water plants, rope twisting and braiding of bracelets.

A drawing workshop will be taught by comics artist Heiki Waher from Kolga-Jaani municipality.

There will be coffee shops open and many different fish dishes available for tasting. Visitors can try their luck in a raffle.

For entertainment, there will be appearances by local amateur performers, youth band Legend from the nearby town of Elva and the Estonian retro pop outfit Regatt as the main act.

It goes without saying that visitors will be able to purchase items by local master craftsmen and sample fish from Lake Võrtsjärve prepared in a wide variety of ways.

Once you have done your deals at the fair, you may join the crew of Paula, a traditional saleboat (kalepurjekas), or one of the other vessels, for a memorable spin on Lake Võrtsjärve to end the day before leaving the fairground. Tickets are available at the harbour from the vessel of your choice.

The day’s activities will be kept on course by Meelis Külaots.

While in previous years spring floods have been a cause for concern in Jõesuu, threatening to keep the fairground from drying out in time, this year the retreating high water has given no trouble to the organisers, as the spring has been exceptionally dry. The fairground has been mown and is ready for receiving visitors.

For further information about the events on the day of the Fair, go to or

The Lake Võrtsjärve Fish and Crafts Fair is supported by the European Fisheries Fund and the LEADER Programme.


This press release was created by:

Jaanika Kaljuvee, Executive Director, Võrtsjärve Fisheries Development Agency
Phone: +372 52 98 561


For further information and trader registration, please contact:

Kärt Leppik, Director, Lake Võrtsjärve Foundation

Phone: +372 56 952 950