Sharon OJanpa Mackey, FHM Staff Reporter

The celebration of Christmas, Pikkujoulu, and Finland’s independence was held on December 9, 2019, at Zion Lutheran Church in Fairport Harbor, Ohio. This was the regular meeting date of the Finnish Heritage Museum (FHM), but so many guests were expected that the meeting/celebration had to be moved from the Museum to the larger church fellowship hall.

Approximately 74 people attended the program, most bringing appetizers to share with others. By all accounts, the food was excellent. It was a very nice turnout, and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. Pictured on the left are FHM members Eric and Gayle Lehtiniemi waiting for activities to start. Eric was a part of the prograam.

The November meeting’s agenda was rolled into this meeting; it had been cancelled due to weather and a power outage, so there was a lot happening Monday night. The following is a summary of the evening:

Doors opened at 5:00 P.M., and the program started at 6:00 P.M. with the welcome pledge, presented by President Lasse Hiltunen and Program Chair Anne Pohto.

Next came the Veterans’ Day Program, which had been scheduled for November. FHM member Mike Loovis gave a talk about the Winter War in Finland; Eric Lehtiniemi discussed the Winter War Memorials; Niles Oinonen talked about his involvement in the service; and Janice Tecil Kondik presented a very moving account of her daughter’s experiences in today’s military. These talks were met with intense interest by everyone in attendance.

Then Anne Pohto announced the presentation by Martin Makela to the Museum of his father’s blue and white plaque, received for valor. What a treasure this is for FHM!

FHM member David Katila then revealed the results of the recent election at the Museum. Heikki Penttila was elected to continue as Vice President and Jane Hiltunen will remain as Secretary. Congratulations to both Jane and Heikki.

Last but definitely not least, the drawing for the main prizes was held. In addition to various door prizes won by several individuals, the Museum gave away three valuable prizes, for which raffle tickets had been sold by members for the last six months. Third prize was a $25 gift certificate to be used in the Museum gift shop and was won by Amy Moyer. Marcia Nauts won the second place drawing – a $50 gift certificate to the Museum gift shop. And the big prize – a new TV donated to FHM by Fred’s Appliance was won by Shirley Northcott. Thank you to Barb Ollila, Museum gift shop manager, for donating the gift shop certificates; and especially to Fred’s Appliance. Fred’s has donated a TV specifically for this drawing for several years now, so be sure to think of him if your appliances need repair.

That’s all for this month. If you are ever in Fairport Harbor, Ohio, be sure to look us up. All our hours and contact information can be found on our website: finnishheritagemuseum.org. Hope to see you soon.

Text © Sharon Mackey, Photos © Jane Hiltunen 2019








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