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 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.

Northern Character Film and TV Festival Nov. 24-26, Murmansk


The event will feature films united around the northern theme. At least in the past all films shown had English subtitles, and the festival’s site has an English version, which gives a reason to expect that the event will be accessible to the international traveler. After the Murmansk show the festival will tour other Murmansk region cities, including Kandalaksha.

These days in August 19-22, 25 years ago

25 years ago there was a coup by communist hardliners aiming to restore the regime. At the time I was far away in Canada, just starting to contemplate my return to Russia, so I could not have actively participated in what was happening. Here in Kandalaksha, the old-timers say, the event went largely unnoticed. Here is a film on what had happened:

It is sad to notice that, in the official media, the anniversary of the failed coup is going largely unnoticed. From what I hear the Moscow city authorities did not allow a rally in memory of August 19-22 1991.


A Sherman tank finally arrives in Murmansk

sherman-tankThis Sherman tank was on board of Thomas Donaldson transport ship on its way to Murmansk in March 1945 as part of the JW-65 convoy under the Lend-Lease program. It was hit by a German torpedo near the Kil’din Island and sank. The ship is still at the bottom of the Barents sea while some of its load was brought to the surface, including this Sherman tank delivered to the Murmansk port and put on a railroad platform today. Its final destination is one of St. Petersburg museums. For more see this b-port article.

Teriberka festival August 12-14

teriberka-2I wrote about it before, and here I’d like to confirm that it is indeed happening in two weeks.

And Alexandra personally spoke with local border guards who confirmed that there are no restrictions to foreigner access to Teriberka.

The Chupa conference report

Translated from my mate Alexandra Goryashko’s blog. Myself I could not have written such a long and comprehensive article that captured the spirit of the event, thus…

The third scientific and practical conference “Natural and Cultural Inheritance of the White Sea: preservation and development” took place in Chupa from July 15 to July 17.

20150718_ijg_014 Pan копия
Photo by Igor Georgievsky

The conference was organized by the Basin Council of the North Karelian Coast and the Lighthouse Foundation. Conference organizers took a big chance holding the event so far not only from major science centers but away from major cities (300km to Murmansk, and 500km to Petrozavodsk).
General view of Chupa. Photo by Alexandra Goryashko.

more >>

Historic reconstruction festival July 2 and 3

gandvikHistoric reconstruction festival “Gandvik” is taking place on the Monastery Cape (just east off Kandalaksha) on July 2nd and 3rd starting at noon. The program includes visiting the Viking camp, single and group combat, recreation of a medieval fair, and show of historic boats.

Free admission!

“Communist Architecture” photo exhibition opens today in Murmansk

soviet-architectureAn exhibition entitled “Sun City. The Architecture of Communism”, dedicated to Soviet architecture of 1960s to 1980s, is open till Sept. 4 at the Murmansk Regional Art Museum (ul. Kominterna 13). It aims to demonstrate to the public the language of Soviet-era building style, dominated by the idea of space exploration, via 150 photos.

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.

A steam engine has just arrived in Murmansk

steam-engineA steam engine Л-4386 (made in Lugansk, Ukraine, in 1951) has just arrived to Murmansk from the Novosokolniki train depot in the Pskov region. It is to be installed as a monument near the train station, part of the current memorial-construction craze..