Posts Tagged With: Finland

Fun Festivals – Air Guitar World Final

Air guitar enthusiasts won’t want to miss the Air Guitar season. Prestigious events are held in Germany along with Japan’s own elimination tournament. However, the crème de la crème of air guitardom is the World Final, held in Oulu, Finland in late August. The Final’s aim is to promote world peace. With this in mind, organizers have banned holding a gun while performing your air-guitar number. The winner goes home with the unique Flying Finn guitar, handmade by the great Mr. Matti Nevalainen. Dedicated air-guitar fans really must obtain advanced tickets to the VIP Area. These tickets give you the best views of the stage and a truly tasty buffet well stocked with local delicacies.

Don’t forget to pack your air guitar or you’ll be forced to buy one at the local Ouluan shops and you’ll know what high prices you’ll see there.

Air guitar hopeful.                                     Why Oulu, Finland holds the Final in August.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Sex Festival in Finland*

 

FB version*

Get excited at the Kangasniemi’s Kutemajarvi Sex Festival. It’s held in July when 5,000 Kangsniemians go sex mad. See live acts from the biggest adult film stars. Cheer on the nude mud wrestlers. Wonder at the sex-toys exhibits. Be entranced at lectures on sex from prominent sex-and-sexuality theorists. Yes sex, just like all subjects, has both empirical and theoretical aspects. But at Kangasniemi you can investigate both of them. If that doesn’t get a rise out of you, what will?

But why content yourself with being a bystander? Don’t have a thing to wear? Then enter the Aphrodite nude beauty competition.

Go there. There’s a lot to see.

* FB threatened me with all sorts of things if kept the original title and picture

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Fun Festivals – Cattle Calling Championship

Can’t speak Finnish, but still love to make yourself heard? Alapitka, Finland, puts on the renowned Cattle Calling Championship. Techniques of the champions are closely guarded secrets. However, successful participants tend to know the names of the cows. Courtesy while chatting with your cow goes a long way to winning the championship.

And you can get good rooms for $35 a night, making Alapitka, Finland a must-see destination for the budget-conscious* traveler.

* = after airfare.

Will she come to your call?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

 

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Fun Festivals – Finnish Sauna World Championship

Relax while competing! Enter the Finnish Sauna World Championship. Simply stay the longest inside Finnish sauna in a temperature of 110 degrees centigrade, 240 degrees Fahrenheit.

Thousands attend the championship in Heinola, Finland, but only dozens compete. Why? Because the temperature of the sauna is 28 degrees over the boiling point of water. But there’s no humidity! It’s true, sauna’s humidity is low, running from 10-to-25 percent. So give it a whirl. Compete!

Or maybe not, in 2010 a contest died. Staying a sauna too long can do nasty things to a body. Spectate!

But maybe you have a competitive nature, while having the inactive disposition of a rock. Then this competition is for you. Compete!

Maybe you like the idea of thousands of spectators and TV audiences watching your nearly naked, sweaty body, covered with only a towel. Compete!

It’s held in August, when it’s outside anyway. Compete!

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Fun Festivals – Wife Carrying Championships

 

The best way to carry the wife

Ronkainen, a legendary Finnish robber of the 1700s, had would-be gang members carry a heavy woman over an obstacle course to prove their strength. The annual wife-carrying championships in Sonkajaarvi, Finland derive from this test. Wife carrying is not an Olympic sport. However, synchronized swimming is.

Couples race around a track well stocked with obstacles such as logs and a deep pool. At one time, the woman in the event had to be the man’s wife, but neighboring women are allowed. The designated wife must weigh 49 kilograms or 108 pounds. You might think a good wife for this race would be as tiny as possible. But no, the winners earn the wife’s weight in beer. The wife must also be at least seventeen-years old. The entry fee as press time was 50 Euros.

Olympians and marathon runners compete alongside, amateurs, and strange couples on their honeymoons. This seems unfair, but in some respects, the Wife Carrying Championship remains a wide-open sport. And oh my gosh, in addition to the regular race, there is a relay race as well. Root heartily for you favorite team.

Add in the karaoke events, you’ll want to return time and time again. And not just to Finland. National championships exist in America, Britain, Germany, India, Hong Kong, and Australia. Surely, there must be a wife-carrying race near you.

Oh no, the 2021 championship was cancelled due to the Covid pandemic. Middle of next summer, then.

See you there

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D., travel guru

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Fun Festivals – Ant Nest Sitting

Finland hosts Ant Nest Sitting Competitions. Athletes–whom am I kidding?–sit on an ant hill for as long as they can stand the ant bites. This competition is held all over the country during the summer months. It truly helps to have a high threshold for pain or an ass harder than bronze. Okay, I find this competition to be weird, but there are those who love it.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Fun Festivals – Swamp Soccer World Cup

Love soccer? Lover a shorter game? Love mud?  Head on over to Finland and Scotland.* The last Swamp Soccer World Championship (SCWC)  I could find took place in Finland. It might have even been held in Hyrynsalmi, Finland  At any rate, the SCWC is usually held in Finland in the middle of June (Sorry, you missed it this year.) 200-to-300 teams from all over the world compete. The SCWC which has been organized by the so-called Swamp Barno Jyrki Väänänen** since 1998. There are five different ways to compete: men’s, women’s, mixed, men’s hobby, and Masters of Swamp.

The Soccer World Cup is usually held in Scotland on the last weekend of June, just after the World Championship in Finland.. There are rumors of it being held in China, India. and Turkey.

Six players are on each side. Each half lasts for 12 minutes. There are no offside penalties. This is fantastic for all those who never understood the rule in the first place. Other little rules abound. As of about 2018, no Polish team had ever competed.

For my Italian readers, these four sentences translate as Ami il calcio? Ami un gioco più breve? Ami il fango? Dirigiti verso Finlandia e Scozia.

For my English speaking readers, this translates as Swamp Baron Jyrki Väänänen who got the whole thing started. Yay Jyrki!

Swamp soccer arose from the practice of Finnish cross-country skiers to train in swamps.

Mud soccer is lots of fun. Be sure to register for the next Swamp Soccer madness, whether in Finland, Scotland, or whenever. Let me know how it turns out.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

 

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Fun Festivals – Cell Phone Tossing

Anja Heino practices tossing cell phones

Be sure to make your way to Savonlinna, Finland during mid August* for its prestigious Cell Phone Throwing Championship. The traditional part has participants throwing the cell phones over their shoulders. The longest toss wins. Cranky folks, such as myself, who have never quite adjusted to the new technology and hurl one phone after another, are usually the tournament favorites.  However, in 2012. it was a well-adjusted man named Eric Karjalainon won. He said he prepared for this event mostly by drinking.

Artistic types will be drawn to the freestyle cell-phone tossing part of the championship. Participants are judged by their creativity. Contestants have been known to do acrobatics or juggling while throwing their cell phones.

Cell-phone-throwing mania is going global, having caught in the rest of Europe and in the United States. This would be one Olympic event I’d watch. Contact the proper agency for rules of competition. As of press time, Nokia is still not an official sponsor.

* = August is almost upon us. Make you travel arrangements right away!

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D., travel guru

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Fun Festivals: Mosquito Swatting Championships

Be sure to visit Pelkosenniemi, Finland for its annual Mosquito Swatting Championship. It is a much beloved, local event. Contestants try to swat the most mosquitoes in 5 minutes. I don’t know when the event takes place, but I imagine it is in the mosquito season. Visitors who attract mosquitoes like flies, hee hee, will be asked to sit in the back rows as the mosquitoes biting them diminish the number of mosquitoes available to the contestants. The record for squashed mosquitos in Pelkosenniemi is 21.

The Swedish town of Övertorneå holds its own mosquito-swatting championship every June. The event started when the town was denied permission to use chemicals to kill the little, flying biters. So the good Swedes made a festival about killing the pests. Contestants here get 15 minutes to kill mosquitos. The record for this town is 135. Tips for getting a high kill count include: working up a good sweat just before competing, standing as still as possible, moving as little as you can when swatting a mosquito, and wearing dark clothes.

Would-be entrants should know that the Swedish record holder guessed mosquitos bit him about 200 times.

 

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D., travel guru

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Great Arctic Eats – Utsjoki, Finland

 

Great Arctic Eats – Utsjoki, Finland

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Are you a diner who shuns crowds, but loves saunas* and watching reindeer ? Do you love words with “aa” in them, such as “kalastaa,” the Finnish word for “fish?” Indeed, do you love Finland but feel uncomfortable with large crowds of Finns who often congregate in the country’s large cities? Do you wish to dine above the Arctic Circle? Well make your way to Utsjoki, Finland, the little town that has it all.
* “Sauna” is “sauna” in Finnish. See? You’re speaking like a native already.
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There are five restaurants listed in TripAdvisor(tm).  So, the competition for your patronage will be fierce indeed. Let’s  visit the local eateries.
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The top rated dining establishment is the esteemed Restaurant Deatnu. They serve traditional Sámi dishes. Yes, they do wonders with reindeer, local berries, and fresh fish. The restaurant has a nice view and a friendly staff. But please, please try the salmon soup.

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Next on our restaurant adventure is Restaurant Aurora Holidays. They serve great local food. Try their delicious reindeer and cod. For dessert, you would do well to order their great sticky cakes. The restaurant looks out on a soothing river. Maybe you’ll even see some wildlife. This pleasant restaurant is run by the family who owns it.
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Winning third place is  Utsjoen Kylatalo Gilsa. It’s known for its hot drinks. Not only is it a charming cafeteria will the flavor of local culture, it also has a grocery store. It’s your one-stop place for food. And remember, you’ll love their buns.

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All self-respecting towns will have a great hamburger joint. Annukan Grill fits this bill nicely. And oh my gosh, oh my gosh, they have a reindeer burger. I want to go there!
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Honorable mention goes to Restaurant Pub Rastigaisa. It serves pizza and has a bar. This restaurant received many reviews written in Finnish, so you know the locals frequent it.
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Utsjoki, unlike many of the other towns reviewed in Great Arctic Eats has a road going in and out of it. It can even boast of a spectacular bridge going into Norway. So you’ll be able motor into town. No dog sleds and hiking needed to get to Utsjoki. Well, I suppose you could charter a plane from Helsinki, but if you want to travel by yourself and see soothing scenery, travelling the last leg of your trip by car really is the way to go. Anyway, there are many must-see sites in Utsjoki.

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Be sure to visit Kevo Strict Nature Reserve.  This place boasts of extremely beautiful hiking routes. You’ll find you self losing track of time while viewing the entrancing scenery. So, be sure to bring a watch with an alarm on it, as the park gets dark at night.

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By all means, see the enchanting church huts. They’re beautiful in their simplicity. All in all, it’s wonderful way to learn Finnish history while staying outdoors. None of that entering the bowels of a stuffy museum for us. The site sports a splendid, little craft shop and a waffle cafeteria. What more could want?

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Drive over the nearby Sàmi Bridge. It’s boasts an elegant, yet impressive dressing. It’s perched over a river dividing Finland from Norway. The bridge and its surrounding are especially beautiful in the twilight. Plus, it doesn’t take much time to take it all in. Just drive your car over the bridge. If you want a quick bit of beauty, this bridge is for you.

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Try to see the beautiful Utsjoen Kirkko. This is the northernmost church in the European Union. So there. The church’s architecture is both pleasant and impressive. Go inside and spend some soul-soothing time with God.

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If you prefer guided tours rather than thrashing about by yourself, look up Aurora Holidays or Tundrasafari Finland. And at the end of a glorious visit, simply unwind at Utsjoki DiscGolfPark.

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As always, “Good eating. Good traveling.”

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– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef, Ph.D.

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: Arctic eats, humor, international, travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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