As part of the European Union open house tradition at the Nation’s Capital, the North American Sauna Society was invited to participate as an organizer at the Finnish Embassy’s open house on Saturday, May 11th. 

Due to the strategic partnership and cooperation, Sauna from Finland provided material for the event; brochures on proper sauna tradition, the upcoming World Sauna Forum in October in Tampere, Finland and the super nice Lahtiset felt products that were also physically on display at the event.  People admired sauna shoes and particularly a blue sauna hat was worn by hundreds of people while taking “sauna selfies,” sitting on the imaginary sauna bench, throwing water on the sauna heater.

Event was very successful both for the embassy and for our sauna mission. More than 3,000 people attended during the six hours it was open for public and most of them waited inline to get a picture taken at the “sauna.” NASS President Eero Kilpi was lucky to be accompanied with Sanna Massala, a freelance Graphic Designer, who volunteered the second year in a row as a proclaimed selfie mistress.

Eero concentrated on lengthy discussions with participants about all things sauna. Biggest concerns were the lack of a proper Finnish public sauna in the Nation’s Capital and many who had traveled to Finland and Europe were concerned of what they felt a sometimes lesser quality and uncleanliness of their local American gym sauna. Further, some were not happy with the unconventional ways how some occasionally use saunas with their exercise gear on. 

No worries, North American Sauna Society with its affiliated organizations, particularly Sauna from Finland and International Sauna Association are working hard to make the Americans enjoy their sauna sessions even more than before.