By Sharon Ojanpa Mackey
On Monday, February 9th, a look back in time provided the first part of our first program for the year 2015.
Ken Quiggle presented a delightful slide show of Painesville, Ohio, in the 1950s. Who remembers Toyland,
the Gail G. Grant Store, (on a very crowded, busy Main Street)
Jerry and Bert’s Restaurant ,
Kresge’s and Newberry’s five and dime stores, the Greyhound Bus Station, Fisher Foods? These, and many other businesses were brought to life again as Ken scrolled through old photos which he found on YouTube. Just about everyone in the audience had a memory or two of these old businesses. What a fun program to begin our February meeting!
Anne Kalliomaa Pohto took the floor for the second half of the evening with her topic: Finnish Name Days (Nimi Paiva). In Finland, a person’s name day is often commemorated with coffee and cake. Every day of the year, except New Year’s Day, Christmas Day, and February 29th, has at least one name to be celebrated. When a baby is born, the parents can choose for their new baby any name they like, or the name honored on that day.
The official source for name days is the Almanac Office at the University of Helsinki. Parents register their children’s names in the Population Information System within two months of birth. The name day calendar has 834 names, with the list being updated every five years. For a new name to be added to the calendar, at least 500 children must have the same name. Names are never removed from the calendar because it is felt that many older names will return to popularity.
Many traditional beliefs are attached to various name days, especially those involving weather and appropriate times to perform seasonal agricultural tasks, such as planting a particular crop. As an example, there is a saying that “Jaakko (James) casts a cold rock into the water,” meaning that on Jaakko’s Day, July 25th, the waters in Finland start getting colder.
There are also official Finnish name day calendars for cats, dogs, and horses, which can be bought in pet stores.
Photos are from youtube in a presentation called "Painesville, Ohio in the 1950's" and can be found here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yO1r0a1j_hg A thank you from FHM.