Summary of 2014 Festival



The theme for the 17th biennial Finnish American Folk Festival reflects the history of the small community Naselle, in Pacific County, Washington. Mainly settled by immigrants from Kaustinen, Finland, starting in the late 1800s, “Nasel” is the original spelling of this unincorporated area.

Held July 25–27 at the Naselle-Grays River Valley school complex located at the junction of SR4 and SR 401, the festival  provided activities for people of all ages.

Sporting events included a Golf Tournament, the Paavo Nurmi 5K Run/Walk, Wife Carry, and Boot Toss. The Golf Tournament is at the Peninsula Golf Course in Long Beach, WA, on Thursday, July 24th. Pre-registration is necessary.

Friday activities began at 10:00 am with a featured film. The exhibits were numerous: photography, arts & crafts, art & flowers, quilts, Finnish war memorabilia, a museum, a Viking ship, genealogy, a Finnabago, logging, and Wahkiakum County Historical Society. New this year is a room dedicated to the Sami, the indigenous people of Sapmi located above the Arctic Circle in Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Russia.

The Tori (marketplace), and food vendors open at this same hour and remain open until 6:00 pm.

In addition, special cultural presentations with discussions happen all day Friday.  Performers once again fill the stadium and the stage in the Commons all day, and a special program happens in the evening.

Saturday started with a pannukakku (Finnish pancake) breakfast, followed by the Opening Ceremony at 10:00 am. The Cultural Programming Series, the performances, exhibits, marketplace, and food venders continued all day.  Saturday additions included food demonstrations, arts and crafts demonstrations, music and genealogy workshops, a salmon dinner, plus a dance in the evening for those of all ages.

Sunday wound down with a community wide Worship Service/Closing Ceremony followed by pulla (cardamom bread) and coffee.

We thank our generous sponsors and encourage you to support them in return:  Bank of the Pacific,  Finnish American Historical Society of the West (Portland),  and United Finnish Kaleva Brothers and Sisters Lodge No.  (Portland).