Saami crafts shop recently opened in Lovozero

News of the recent opening of the Saami craft shop/outlet named “Vuss” (a round-bottomed leather bag) in Lovozero, the center of Kola Saami, have reached me. Their shop both makes and sells things. 

Here are some examples of their deerskin articles:

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“To book aurora borealis”

Got several inquiries from travelers wishing to come here to see the aurora borealis, aka northern lights. Here is my attempt to provide a comprehensive answer to the seekers of this phenomenon.

The most common question is “When do I need to travel to the Kola Pensula to see aurora borealis for sure”. First, forget the “for sure” part. The aurora is a probabilistic thing. Thus there is no clear-cut answer to this question. Generally speaking, aurora borealis can be observed at high latitudes any time there are dark nights. On the Kola Peninsula it is approximately from September to April.

A common misconception is that aurora borealis requires real cold winter weather. This photo was made in the Hibiny mountains on the 28th of September, and I’ve myself seen the aurora in the vicinity of Kandalaksha starting the end of August.

 

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Norwegians in Murmansk, Lovozero and around

Here is a story by Kristin Evju from her Norwegians’ group September 2017 visit to the local cultural Sami events in Murmansk and Lovozero, with a detour to Seidjavr Lake, with the assistance of Mikhail Barakovsky, with whose support I took two Swedish journalists to see reindeer keepers a couple of years ago.

The story is of the “atmospheric” type, with not much in the way of practical details, but a would-be traveler can, and are encouraged to contact us for these.

Norwegian news site calls the Sam Syit Saami village “a circus of nonsense”

sam-syitNo harsh words were spared in this article in the Norwegian nrk.no to describe the Sam Syit Saami village near Lovozero in the center of the Kola Peninsula. The main thrust of the angry author is that the village is as far from being authentic as one can be, and represents “a nonsensical mix of rabbits, fleece clothing, and Indian totem poles”. It is in Norwegian but auto-translates into English quite coherently.

Saami women’s forum June 9 and 10 in Murmansk

sami women boardThe Center for the Assistance to Small Indigenous Nations of the North reports that tomorrow, June 9, in Murmansk’s Azimut Hotel starts a session of the Saami Women’s Forum – an organization that includes women from Norway, Russia, Finland, and Sweden. The forum is held since 1993, and aims to promote public interest in the issues of language and culture, get Saami women more involved into public life, and to tell the world about the life and work of Saami women. The forum is held for two days, June 9 and 10, starting 8:45am.

After the forum the participants are off to Lovozero to take part in the Summer Saami festival on June 11.

Recent Reindeer Herder’s Day in Lovozero

The Celebration of the North and Reindeer Herder’s Day are held in Lovozero every year in the 20s of March. The event includes reindeer and dog sled races, ski races, and winter football. A artisans fair is held and Saami national cooking offered. Here are a few photos from the most recent event that took place March 19-20 by Oleg Filonok.

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Why are their tongues stuck out? The reindeer has nearly no sweat glands, so when it runs it sticks it tongue out to stay cool, the way dogs do. more >>

Grand Prix Race Car on Lovozero Ice

In a race for attention and publicity a race car was brought to Lovozero and raced on the lake ice, reaching the speed of 255km/hr, which is supposed to be a record for such a situation.

A monument to the members of deer transportation batallion

The Fund of Saami Inheritance and Development has announced the collection of money to build a monument in memory of members of the deer transportation batallion.

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Storm winds upturned an airplane in Murmansk

upside-down-planeNot too bad in Kandalaksha. A few pieces of roofing metal blown down and last remains of ice come crushing from roofs but nothing unusual for this time of year. But they say in Murmansk it is considerably worse, with small dogs blown off sidewalks and an airplane in the Murmashi airport turned upside down. Bad news from Lovozero too..

Reindeer Herder’s Day in Krasnoshelye, Lovozero District

Next Friday and Saturday, March 18-19, a small village of Krasnoshelye (population under 500), as close to the middle of nowhere as it gets, deep in the tundra 130km east of Lovozero, will be teeming with activity. It is the yearly Reindeer Herder’s Day, and it will include 3200 meter and 1600 meter sled racing, skier towing behind a reindeer, jumping over sleds, loop-throwing, and a fighting competition.

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