The Finnish Festival, Suomipäivät in Finnish, is the annual meeting of Finns in Australia. Each year it is hosted by a rotating roster of Finnish Clubs around Australia in auspices of the Australasian Federation of Finnish Societies and Clubs Inc.

This year, we are very excited about hosting the 55st Finnish Festival in Altona of Hobson’s Bay on the Easter weekend in April!

The heart of the Finnish Festival is celebrating our culture; the music, the dancing, the food, the drinks, the people.

Sports and games
Clubs compete known as the best.

Featuring our folk dancers and choirs

Experience our culture first hand.

Food and Drink
to indulge in and try.


Kyykkä, is a centuries-old game of Karelian origin. The aim is to throw wooden bats at stacked skittles, trying to remove them from the square using as few throws as possible. Kyykkä can be played in teams of four, two, or as an individual.

Each player takes turn throwing the bat to knock the skittles out of the opposing playing square until you run out of bats or you knock all the skittles out.

Skittles remaining in the playing square yield minus two points; skittles remaining on the lines yield minus one point, and unused bats yield plus one point.

After scoring, sides are changed, and the game restarts. The team or individual with the highest total score is the winner.

Excerpt: Wikipedia

Kyykkä, TacticBoardGames @TacticBoardGames. Youtube.


Mölkky, commonly known as Finska in Australia, is a Finnish throwing game suitable for all ages and conditions.

The aim is to throw the pin to knock over skittles each round until you score exactly 50 points. Going over will set your score back to 25 points then the game continues.

When you throw, the number of pins you knock down is added to your score. If you only knock one down, the number shown on that skittle is added to your score instead.

The winner is the first person to reach exactly 50 points.

Excerpt: Wikipedia

Mölkky tutorial | How to play, Pia Lamberg @PiaLambergOfficial. Youtube.

Mölkky, TacticBoardGames @TacticBoardGames. Youtube.


The basic idea of pesäpallo is similar to that of baseball: the offense tries to score by hitting the ball successfully and running through the bases, while the defense tries to put the batter and runners out. One of the most important differences between pesäpallo and baseball is that the ball is pitched vertically, which makes hitting the ball, as well as controlling the power and direction of the hit, much easier. This gives the offensive game more variety, speed, and tactical aspects compared to baseball. The fielding team is forced to counter the batter’s choices with defensive schemes and anticipation.

Excerpt: Wikipedia

Inside Pesäpallo, Finland’s Answer to Baseball, Wall Street Journal @wsj. Youtube.

The Rules of Pesäpallo (Finnish Baseball) – EXPLAINED!, Ninh Ly @NinhLyUK. Youtube.

Wife carrying (Eukonkanto)

The objective is for the male to carry the female through a special obstacle track in the fastest time.

Several types of carrying may be practised: either a classic piggyback, a fireman’s carry (over the shoulder), or Estonian-style (wife upside-down on his back with her legs over the neck and shoulders).

World Championships will be held in Sonkajärvi, Finland, 30 th June – 1st July in 2023. More info

Excerpt: Wikipedia

What Is the Wife-Carrying World Championship?
Inside Edition @InsideEdition. Youtube.

Hobby Horse

Hobby horsing is a new hobby that is popular mainly for girls and young ladies. It originated in Finland, where its popularity started growing gradually, mainly owing to the documentary Hobby Horse Revolution directed by Selma Vilhunen, an Oscar nominee.

Although it might be seen only as a girl´s whim, it is quite the opposite. Hobby horsing is an official sport. Girls compete in various disciplines – such as show jumping or dressage, where precision, your own style, or performed figures are evaluated. In Finland, where thanks to this documentary there is the largest membership base for hobby horsing, national championships are held every year. During the Helsinki Equestrian Festival at the end of May, over 5000 people took part in the associated hobby horseriding competitions.

Excerpt: Wikipedia

Finns compete in annual hobby horse championship
AP Archive @APArchive. Youtube.


We need more people like you to make this year’s Finnish Festival amazing!

Volunteering is a great way to gain more experience in a particular field or to show off the skills you already have.

We welcome anybody over the age of 16 and encourage people with Food Handling or RSA (18+) to step forward. We can also support you in obtaining these.

Roles you could be involved in:

  • Kitchen hand
  • Bar staff (18+)
  • Info desk
  • Field food tent
  • Stage hand
  • And more.

All volunteers will be invited to a post games BBQ as a thank you from the FSM.

Simply register online with the button below. Please also ask your family and friends if they will be able to help.

Finnish Festival was made possible by the following: