Finland should be on the list of any sports enthusiast’s travel destination. Instead of going to the Olympics why not visit Finland and participate in the many eccentric competitions that are hosted annually every summer in Finland. Some of the craziest and funniest summer events could be:
1. Wife Carrying World Championship
When? every year for two days: 1-2 July
Where? the town of Sonkajarvi, near the city of Rovaniemi
This competition is a recreation of an old Finnish folk tale about a local villain Herkho Ronkainen who carried off beautiful native girls, whether they were married or not, it didn’t matter to Herkho. The main aim of the competition is to carry your wife from start to finish. So, husbands either beef up or tell your wife to slim down if you want to win.
Contestants to carry wives across a 253.5 metre track of sand, grass and asphalt, and a water obstacle.The wife today need not be your own, but she must wear a crash helmet in case you drop her (which incurs a 15-second time penalty). The prize is a loaf of rye bread, a statuette and the woman's weight in beer.
2. Mobile Phone Throwing World Championship
Where? in Riihisaari, Savonlinna in eastern Finland
Throw a mobile phone!!! You must be thinking they are crazy. The competition has no rules except one; just throw your mobile phone from a distance into a marked sector. Judges however do not allow people with a medical condition to enter. This competition is a Finnish way to let off some steam and have a little fun. For a country that is famous for producing quality Phones it’s not such a problem, but techies beware it’s going to be a nightmare seeing that phone being flung into the air.
3. Mosquito Killing Contest
Where? all across the countryside; Pyhatunturi
If you have had a lot of experience in killing mosquitoes, then enter into “The Mosquito Swatting Competition” held annually in Finland. The competition is won by the criteria of number of mosquitoes you can swat in less than 5 minutes. It doesn’t seem that hard but can you win with competitors that can swat 30 to 70 mosquitoes in 5 minutes? So when in Finland, open your windows and practice killing as many mosquitoes possible. It’s one of the best ways to win.
The official world record from 1995 stands at 21 mosquitoes in 5 minutes. The very first games, if we can call mosquito killing a game, were held in 1993. In the year 1996 it was impossible to hold the championships because of the lack of mosquitoes. a total of 1,314 mosquitoes have met their fate in this sport. The corpses are traditionally fed to the fish.
4. The Ant-Nest Sitting Competition
Where? all over
“The Ant-Nest Sitting Competition” is held in many parts of Finland all through the summer. The competition is won by sitting on an ants nest for the longest duration. If you are not up for it, be a spectator to see the funny and awkward faces people make as soon as they dip their backs onto the nest. For those planning to enter, numbing your behind would be a good strategy to win.
5. Swamp Football
When? 15-16 July
Where? Vuorisuo bog in Hyrynsalmi, Finland
It’s the mud that makes the football matches different. So far 800 teams participate every year in the fun mud event. Anyone can enter with a team of 11, but, please do not wear white. A tournament is held in a swamp where the competitors play in mud up to almost their knees.
6. The World Air Guitar Championship
When? 24, 27 August
Guitar or no guitar, the Finnish love to show off their skills. People from all round the world participate in a full fledged musical competition with no instruments at all. It’s weird and cool in one, just get on stage and start swinging your fingers to action. The aim of the competition is to woo the crowd into frenzy with air guitar skills. The judges then decide who the best is. So for all the daydreaming rock stars this is the competition for you.
7. The Rubberboot Throwing World Championship
According to the rules of the Finnish Rubberboot Throwing Union, the boot in the men`s competition in size 43. The ladies compete with size 38 boot. The current world record is 65.34 meters and the ladies` record 44,44 meters. Besides throwing the boot, Finns also compete in throwing other items, such as raw eggs, in which competition the record is 84 meters with the egg remaining in one piece.