Opalenica is a picturesque town near Poznan. It is not only a popular cultural resort of Greater Poland Voivodeship, but also a perfect destination for keen sportsmen. There are numerous sport fields and facilities as well as long bike routes stretching from Opalenica to Lwowek (32 km) and Nowy Tomysl (26 km). Opalenica accommodation range is diversified so everyone will find something for themselves.
Opalenica is a significant cultural and recreational resort. The most important is a community centre, which has been operating in the town since 1969. It is called TAKLAMAKAN, which means ‘you may walk in, but you can’t get out.’ For over 40 years, lots of events have been organised here. Worth mentioning are pop and rock stars’ concerts, poetry nights and art workshops. Moreover, the community centre gave a chance to many talented young people to develop their musical skills. Nowadays, TAKLAMAKAN is used by a few rock and folk bands as a place of their rehearsals and by Town Council as a place of their sessions, debates and meetings. Opalenica’s community centre organises also dance, acting, art and cooking classes.
Opalenica is a recognised sport and recreation centre. The town owns many sporting fields and facilities, which enable its inhabitants to practise their favourite disciplines. Opalenica has also a stadium, surrounded by a running track, and a complex of 15 football courts, where Opalenica REMES CUP – the international junior football tournament – takes place. Moreover, there are five tennis courts, which hold annual International Tennis Junior Europe Cup. In the town centre we find also a large Sport & Recreation Centre with a full-size sport hall and more than 500 seats for spectators.
Opalenica is not only a destination for active visitors, but also for keen historians. The town may boast of numerous monuments, the most vital of which are: Late Gothic St. Matthew church, cemetery chapel from the first half of the 17th century, neo-classical vicarage situated beside St. Matthew church, a town hall from 1897 and neo-Gothic St. Joseph church from 1900. Opalenica is also famous for windmills. There used to be three such buildings in the town. Nowadays we find no windmill in this region. Two of them were burnt – one in 1983, and the second in 2004 – and the third one was pulled down due to the danger of its collapse.
Opalenica is a town in Greater Poland Voivodeship, in Nowy Tomysl County. It lies 37 km west from Poznan (short excursion to Poznan could be a good idea, if you have time), by the Mogilnica River – the longest right-bank tributary of Obra.
Opalenica is a sizeable town, with the population of more than 9,000 people. However, during spring and summer seasons the visitor number greatly increases. Its unquestionable tourist values, i.e. picturesque neighbourhood and lots of monuments, attract hundreds of visitors every year.
The oldest records about Opalenica come from 1393. We learn that its first owner was Ticz Bar de Opalenicza and that Opalenica obtained town rights most probably in 1400. Approximately 39 years later Opalenica came into possession of Poznan bishop, Andrzej from Bnino, who soon passed it to his cousin, Piotr. In 1453 Piotr changed his last name to Opalinski and Opalenica remained in hands of his descendants for three centuries.
In 1793, as a result of the Second Partition of Poland, Opalenica was joined into the territory of Prussia. In between 1806 and 1815 it belonged to Duchy of Warsaw, and later was rejoined to Prussia. Prussia authorities, in order to encourage German colonists to settle in the region, built Evangelic school and assembly here.
A great influence on a dynamic development of this area had a railway from Poznan to Berlin, which passed through the town. In 1881 also a railway from Opalenica to Grodzisk was built here. Also at that time there came a decision on sugar factory building. A lot of national organisations were formed in the town and in 1906 school children went on strike to defend Polish language.
In December 1918 Opalenica appeared in the reach of Great Poland Uprising. The town was released on December 28 and already on January 5, 1919 its newly created insurgent army headed towards nearby Zbaszyn in order to set it free.
The Second World War began with destroying evacuation train at the railway station on September 1, 1939. Lots of the town’s inhabitants were killed or evacuated and due to the fact Opalenica population dropped by over 800 people.
On January 26,1945, Opalenica was invaded by the Red Army, but the end of WWII did not bring significant destruction. After 1945 the town became an important industrial centre.