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Lesson Transcript

Neighbor's Party
In French, it’s called Fête des Voisins. Voisin means “neighbor.”
This event is the initiative of a Parisian non-profit association. It takes place on the last Friday of May or the first Friday of June. In this lesson, we’re going to find out more about this holiday.
Now, before we get into more detail, do you know the answer to this question?
What are the three biggest cities in France?
If you don't already know, you’ll find out a bit later, so keep listening.
Neighbor’s Day is also called Immeubles en fête, which means “Building Party.” It’s because the first event was organized inside a building in Paris.
This idea was born in 1990 when a group of friends created an association called “Paris d’amis” meaning “Paris of Friends” in the seventeenth district of the French capital. They wanted to strengthen the ties between people living in the neighborhood and fight isolation.
The association then carried out numerous projects with this goal, such as a sponsorship service for neighbors with hardships.
In 1999, the association launched Neighbor’s Day in the seventeenth district of Paris. Its success was immediate – 800 buildings participated, involving more than 10,000 residents! The principle is simple. Parties are organized in buildings, houses, gardens, and so on. Anyone can organize a party, and anyone can participate. Each guest brings something to drink or eat. This initiative lets neighbors meet and get to know the other people who live in the neighborhood better.
This French event has now crossed the borders of its home country, first with an extension of the holiday into Belgium and ten other European cities in 2003, and later with the organization of European Neighbor’s Day in 2004, which supports events taking place in more than 150 cities in Europe and beyond. It’s even spread to Canada, Turkey, and Azerbaijan!
There’s a French film about Neighbor’s Day, too. It’s called “La Fête des voisins” which can be translated as “Neighbor’s Day.” It was released in 2010 and directed by David Haddad. The film tells the story of a security guard named Pierrot who organizes a party in his building.
Now it's time to answer our quiz question!
Do you know which are the three biggest cities in France?
The three biggest cities in France are Paris, Marseille, and Lyon. In French, they can be read as Paris, Marseille, Lyon. Just these three cities alone have more than 3 million people. That’s a lot of neighbors to invite over!
How was this lesson? Did you learn anything interesting?
Have you ever participated in an event like Neighbor’s Day?
Please leave a comment telling us at FrenchPod101.com and we’ll see you next time!