“Today, the city bath house needs support because, due to last year's lengthy six-month shutdown associated with the coronavirus, the banya cannot pull itself out of debt. Financing the maintenance of the bath from the city budget is forbidden. It will therefore depend on the bath lovers themselves. There are more than enough private baths and saunas in the city, but there is only one such public bath house. Let's save the municipal bath together!”
Hard-hit during the pandemic, the Sayanogorsk municipal banya (a Russian bathhouse and sauna) is in financial peril. On August 23, the city’s mayor entreated his citizens to join the effort to pull it back from the brink – and posted a video of himself to Facebook enjoying the banya’s delights, whipping his back with birch branches the traditional way as he sweat from the heat. We can only hope that the mayor’s flash of flesh will prevent the banya, such an iconic symbol of Russian leisure, from closing its doors permanently.
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