Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Hancock celebrates Heikinpäivä 2014 despite frigid weather

By Michele Bourdieu

David Maki, staff member of the Finnish American Reporter and Finnish American Heritage Center, as this year's Hankooki Heikki, rides the giant kicksled in the 2014  Heikinpäivä Parade and reigns over the festivities held on Jan. 25 in Hancock. (Photos by Allan Baker for Keweenaw Now unless otherwise indicated.)

HANCOCK -- Undaunted by the sub-zero temperatures last Saturday, Jan. 25, Hancock celebrated its mid-winter festival, Heikinpäivä 2014, a celebration of Finnish American cultural heritage. Here are a few video clips of the parade, thanks to Keweenaw Now's Allan Baker, and photos by Allan and also by Arlyn and Sandy Aronson, borrowed with their permission from Gromit the Snow Dog's blog, Trail Mutt Reports.

Gromit the Snow Dog (Lumi Koira), decked out in her January booties, joins a friend in the 2014 Heikinpäivä Parade in Hancock. (Photo courtesy Arlyn and Sandy Aronson. Reprinted with permission from Gromit's blog, Trail Mutt Reports.)

To see all the photos, click here and then on slide show or on any photo in our slide show posted in the right-hand column.

Here are two video clips of some of the hardy participants in the 2014 Heikinpäivä Parade:

Spectators comment as some of the favorite parade characters pass by -- the Suomi Lion of Finlandia University, Heikki Lunta the snow god (calling for "more snow") and the graceful Swan from the Kalevala, the Finnish epic poem. (Videos by Allan Baker for Keweenaw Now)

More characters from the Kalevala, Finnish Theme Committee members, Finlandia University students, members of the Keweenaw Nordic Ski Club, the Brrr Maids and the Michigan Tech Pep Band parade down Quincy Street in Hancock during Heikinpäivä 2014.

The Wife Carrying competition follows the parade. Hankooki Heikki (David Maki) presides over the event as Jim Kurtti, Finnish American Reporter editor, takes photos. 

A sign near the Heikinpäivä Tori (indoor market), held in the First United Methodist Church on Quincy Street, announces hot homemade chili and soup, Finnish bread (rieska), and hot drinks for warming up after the parade. 

At the Tori in the Methodist church, people shop for hand-crafted items, warm up with hot drinks and snacks and listen to live music.

Be sure to check out our slide show for more Heikinpäivä 2014 photos.

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