Work weekends (talkoot) at Salolampi began in 1993 with volunteers joining together to assemble three log cabins imported from Finland. These weekends, one every fall and one every spring, continue to help maintain the village. Anyone is free to attend work weekends and bring whatever skills they have, whether it be painting, chopping wood, cleaning or organizing. Read more about the history of work weekends below.
Who: Anyone interested in visiting and helping spruce up Salolampi.
Spring Work Weekend — April 28-30, 2022
Register for Spring Work Weekend here
Fall Work Weekend — September 15-17, 2023
Register for Fall Work Weekend here
What to bring: Please bring your own sleeping bags, pillows, and towels.
Contact the Salolampi Foundation so we can arrange lodging and board needed for the work crew. Please consider coming no matter how much you feel you can contribute. Everyone is welcome even if it is your first time at Salolampi or you can only stay for part of the weekend.
“Beds, hot showers, the sauna, delicious meals, fresh air, camaraderie, and work will be at Salolampi in plentiful supply.”
− Mike Anuta
History of Salolampi Work Weekend
Work Weekends (talkoot) at Salolampi have occurred twice a year since the shipment of logs for the first cabin arrived from Finland. A total of 3 log cabins from Finland were assembled between October 1993 and August 1994. A weekend in spring and another in fall seemed appropriate times to clean up, fix up, and add to the usability of the village. Mike Anuta and Leo Nevala were the first Work Weekend directors. The camaraderie and good food expanded to evening entertainment. Frequent coffee breaks and the Saturday night sauna are traditional. Mike would say “Beds, hot showers, the sauna, food, fresh air, camaraderie, and work will be at Salolampi in plentiful supply.” Workers are asked to bring their own sleeping bags, pillows, and towels.
The director provides materials, recruits workers, and supervises the projects. Besides the continuing cleaning projects, yard-work, painting, and staining, a number of larger projects have been completed during work weekends. Permanent plantings of birch, evergreens, shrubs, and perennial flowers beautify the campus. Master carpenter Brian Kallioinen has headed carpentry projects such as handicapped ramps for the cabins, bookshelves for the library, chests for weaving materials, night-stands, unique railings for the cabins, and siding on the patio wall below Jyringin Talo. He designed and built handsome birch cabinets for storage of Finnish dishes, glassware and other supplies.
Lauri Saukko once mentioned that he would like a new woodshed constructed in the old fashioned manner. Workers were surprised at the quantity of materials and the length of time such a project would take. Logs were first cut and peeled on one work-weekend. Corner holes were dug and cement was poured in the holes. On the next work-weekend, notches in logs were made and the walls began to go up. The pseudo-authentic design called for the sidewalls to slowly slant outwards as the walls grew higher. The walls were only about half the full height when the prepared logs ran out. More logs were ready for the next work weekend.
Ron Johnson, a chainsaw expert, was available to split some logs in half to create trusses. The crew used plywood sheets on the roof, and half the roof was shingled before time ran out on that weekend. The project was completed on the next Work Weekend. There are still some varying opinions among the workers on whether the ends of the shed need to be closed in or not.
Johnson also used his talents to split a number of large logs for benches at the campfire (nuotio). More half logs provide resting places along the path from the sauna to the cabins..
The Finnish ambassador, during a visit to Salolampi, commented that the flagpole by Jyringin Talo would not be proper in Finland because it was not higher than the highest building on the grounds. Oiva Ylönen took that as a personal challenge to get a proper flagpole. He calculated how tall a tree it would take and then cut down a tree on his own property. He peeled it and then painted it white. Jack Rajala lent him a trailer to haul the pole about 100 miles to Salolampi. It was quite a proud moment for the volunteers to put up a “proper” flagpole with a Finnish flag in the right proportion to the pole.