|Home | First lady | Activities of Silvia Gašparovičová | Year 2010 | Presidential couple hosted King Harald V. and Queen Sonja in Banská Štiavnica|
On the third day of the official visit on 28th October 2010 visited the Norwegian royal couple Banská Štiavnica. Beauty of this region they were showed by President Ivan Gašparovič and his spouse Silvia. Crowds of people in this mining town did not miss this rare visit. At the Town Hall the special guests were welcomed by President Ivan Gašparovič and his wife and Mayor Pavol Blažanka. The royal couple, accompanied by Ivan Gašparovič and his wife Silvia, saw the exhibit of the Slovak Mining Museum and the historic castle, but also viewed the gallery of J. Kollár, where they watched the mineralogical exposure.
Enthusiasm of Banská Štiavnica showed King Harald V. along with Queen Sonja. "We are very pleased we are in this fantastic city, which is listed by UNESCO. A long time we were looking forward to this visit. Yet it did not disappoint us," said King Harald V. In the afternoon the royal couple and the presidential couple moved into the castle in Saint Anton, where they viewed a falconer’s show by students of the College of Forestry in Banská Štiavnica.
The official visit of the royal couple in Slovakia was marked also in the spirit of Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson. "Today we could demonstrate that more than 100 years ago a friendship between Norway and Slovakia began, by Bjornson, who was not afraid to stand on the side of small nations, to express the fear that Hungary is a prisons of nationalities. The death of this great Norwegian has not finished the friendship with Norway. After the independence of the Slovak Republic, the problems posed by the economic crisis, it is once again Norway which helps us. I am therefore very pleased that we can pay tribute and a big thanks to the royal family and the entire Norwegian people," said President Ivan Gašparovič during the visit to Banská Štiavnica. He added that he believes that this visit will strenghten our friendship in the future and that kindness of our people and their positive attitude to the Norwegians will remember Majestys at their visit to Slovakia also in the future.
Queen Sonja thanked also the First Lady that together they could see specific projects that were financed by Norwegian funds. "With Mrs. Gašparovičová we saw a new pool, which was constructed from these funds. It was amazing to see the joy of children with disabilities. I would like to stress that the most powerful experience for me was the meeting people who live in Slovakia and their warmth," said Queen Sonja. She even stressed, that the food served in Saint Anton was an excellent one.
First Lady thanked the royal couple. "I would like to express gratitude to the royal couple for help in such major projects. I am also very glad that we could show them the important works of art, historical monuments, as well as the beauty of Slovakia," said Mrs. Silvia Gašparovičová after a short briefing in Banská Štiavnica.
After Banská Štiavnica the royal couple moved into Žiar nad Hronom. Here they got familiar not only with the current modern manufacturing technology of aluminum but also with other development plans of the companies Slovalco and Sapa Profiles. King Harald V. with Queen Sonja, along with the slovak President and the First Lady knocked the cornerstone of a new production hall for anodic oxidation in the Sapa Profiles complex.