Events were supposed to take place all weekend to celebrate the 125th anniversary of Finlandia University, also known as Suomi College at one time in its history. Due to high COVID-19 activity, the school is condensing the festivities to just this Sunday with a worship service at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in Hancock and a program marking Finnish Independence Day later in the afternoon at the Heritage Center.
Finland’s official independence day is December 6th and was declared in 1917 following the collapse of the regime of Tsar Nicholas II. Prior to the rise of the USSR Finland was a territory of Russia. A brutal civil war would rage for most of the following year between communist dominated “Red Finland” and a coalition of groups known as “White Finland.”
Both of the events will require masks and sign-in, with attendance strictly controlled. Director of Marketing and Communications Jordan Shawhan says there will be ways to view the events virtually. “A Livestream feed of both events will be provided on this site, www.finlandia.edu/125th. A virtual Opening Reception of the 31st Contemporary Finnish American Artist Series will be held on Dec. 9 at 7 pm on Zoom. More information for that can also be found at Finlandia’s 125th Anniversary website.”