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On the beach in Serebryany Bor. Photo by N. Maksimov. June 1958. Main Archive of Moscow

The Glavarchiv tells about the entertainment of the townspeople in the warm season.

From year to year in summer, many Muscovites traditionally go to their dacha or to the sea. But even while staying in the city, the townspeople could always find leisure to their liking. The photos and documents stored in the early 1960s will tell you what summer entertainment was like in the early 1960s. Glavarchiv.

So, in July 1960, in the shadow of the Tverskoy Boulevard alley, there were tables where you could find the latest issues of newspapers and magazines. It was the summer reading room of the library No. 65 of the Soviet District, which is very popular with Muscovites.

One could also read in city parks. In June 1961, a branch of the All-Union State Library of Foreign Literature was opened in the M. Gorky Park of Culture and Leisure. Visitors were greeted by a cozy and small pavilion located under the arches of trees. There were reading and recording rooms inside. During that summer season, the townspeople listened to lectures here in English, French, German, Czech, Italian, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese and other languages.

In the same year, a reading room of a branch of the Central Polytechnic Library was opened in Izmailovsky Park. The hall is located on a veranda surrounded by greenery. Visitors could find here more than one and a half thousand books, new magazines and reference books on science and technology. In addition, exhibitions, reviews of new literature and meetings with publishers were held in the reading room.

Organized for Muscovites and summer vacations by the water. For example, already at the beginning of June 1960, vacationers swam, sunbathed, played chess, checkers, dominoes and volleyball on the three equipped beaches of Serebryany Bor. One could also read newspapers and books there. There were three boat stations and lockers for motorcycles, scooters and bicycles. Kvass, fruit water, kefir, sandwiches, hot dogs, strawberries and cherries were bought in stalls and buffets. And in the snack bars, vacationers could taste borscht or rump steak.

Swimming in 1960 was also possible in the center of the capital. On the Kropotkinskaya embankment, a large swimming pool “Moscow” was opened, which could receive 20 thousand people in one day. For the convenience of visitors, seven pavilions with wardrobes, showers, lounges and buffets were installed here. Next to the pool, aeraria for taking air baths and beaches for sunbathers were equipped, as well as a training pool and splash baths for the youngest visitors. More than three thousand trees and 4.5 thousand bushes were planted around the central pool, which had a gradual slope, a tower and a springboard. It was also connected to the subway passage so that visitors could go straight to the dressing rooms and go swimming.

In the summer of 1961, beaches appeared on the Moskva River and ponds in Sokolniki, Serebryany Bor, Strogino, Kuntsevo, Kozhukhov, on the Klyazminsky and Khimki reservoirs. Here you could swim and sunbathe, play sports games, as well as snack on sandwiches or cool off with ice creams and drinks.

In addition, boat rental stations operated on the Moskva River and other reservoirs of the capital and the region. The townspeople willingly rode motor boats in Serebryany Bor, Khimki and the M. Gorky Park.

In the summer of 1960, Muscovites happily spent their time at the fair in Luzhniki. Then on the square in front of the Central Stadium a linen city grew up in a few days, which even had its own highways – Gumovskaya and Tsumovskaya streets, Detsky Mir avenue, Khrustalny proezd and Porforovy lane. Fair visitors could buy fabrics, clothes and shoes, furs and hats. There were haberdashery and perfumery departments, grocery and cookery departments. Two large pavilions at the fair were reserved for synthetic goods produced by chemical enterprises. In the book pavilions one could purchase various literature or subscribe to collected works. On the Detsky Mir avenue, goods for young townspeople were sold: toys, straw skullcaps, fur coats. Customers visited self-service stores and ordered goods at home.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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