Iloista vappua! Glad första maj! Happy May Day!

After Hours

Today, Finland celebrates vappu (Swedish: valborg) or May Day to mark the end of winter and to welcome spring and summer. Many people have the day off. Celebration plans often include making sima (quick mead), funnel cakes or donuts, and parties the night before. On May Day itself, people spend time outside, either having a picnic, possibly joining a parade, or just hanging out around town, eating street food and buying streamers and balloons.

Flickr e_e_v_i Vappu ja sima-8452

Vappu ja sima-8452 by e_e_v_i on Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Since moving to the U.S., I haven’t participated in vappu celebration physically. In spirit, however, May the first continues to hold a special meaning for me: I love spring, the return of light and re-awakening of nature.

Iloista vappua! Glad första maj! Happy May Day!