The Heikinpaiva celebration event is finally back after two years

Heikinpaiva festival is back a taking a two-year break do to covid.
Ukrainian attendees.
Ukrainian attendees.(WLUC)
Published: Jan. 28, 2023 at 10:29 PM EST
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HANCOCK, Mich. (WLUC) - The Houghton and Hancock communities were excited to celebrate their notorious Heikinpaiva Festival at the Finnish Heritage Center in Hancock.

Finnish theme Committee Chairmen Jim Kurtti said the return of this event is full of fun.

“It begins with the market where we are now. Then at 11 a.m. there is a parade,” said Kurrti. “Then in the afternoon there are games and live music. Demonstrations continue until three and this evening we have a buffet and dance.”

Kurtti expressed during the market portion of the festival, attendees could purchase items from the vendors. This year, there is a new addition.

“The themes of a lot of the vendors are either Nordic, Finnish theme’s handmade themes the food as well,” said Kurtti. “The vendors are serving mostly Finnish food but also today Ukrainian food because we have asked the Ukrainians to join us.”

The parade was led by multiple Ukrainian refugees. One family says they came Saturday to give people what they call a ‘taste of the U.P.’

“I’m cooking dumplings and baked treats and little Ukrainian foods and Ukrainian things,” said Ukrainian Vendor and Houghton citizen.

This Ukrainian family has been Houghton residents for five months.

Kurtti stated the reason they began this event years ago in Hancock is because of its historic ties to Finnish culture.

“Hancock has been in history one of the nesting places of finish America,” said Krutti. “It’s one of the places where the culture is preserved, and we are recognizing that as well.”

Organizers said that Saturday’s event was a huge success and next year they are hoping that more people come out and experience it first-hand.