Reintroducing the Finnish Sauna

by David Schmit | Feb 18, 2013
| 1 Comment

Summary:

I am proposing to reintroduce the tradition of a Finnish native sauna to St. Paul, spread information about the many health benefits and the history associated with it, correct wrong impressions and emphasize the meaning of sauna bathing for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Ideally my vision would utilize the Municipal Grain Terminal or Harriet Island Pavilion because of their proximity to the Mississippi River. These buildings would be ideal for a business geared towards the sauna. Being on the river would allow for bathers to monopolize on the proximity to the water as well as allow patrons to enjoy the view of downtown St. Paul. Other properties within St. Paul could also be renovated to accommodate a sauna.

I would utilize other local resources such as using diseased birch and elm trees to burn as the primary heat source for the saunas. I would use the Mississippi River to generate electricity. If the situation would allow, I would like to have a small café that would promote healthy eating, hydration and emphasize on cuisine native to Finland and Sweden, but sourced from local farms and suppliers.

The idea of a sauna isn’t new but one that is geared towards bringing the community together, especially in the winter when a lot of us feel delegated to our homes to wait out the snowy months. This would be a business that would introduce thousands of people to a pastime that has deep roots in their heritage. Exposing individuals to a way of life that gave their ancestors many years of health and happiness. There are cultural, environmental, historical, and health benefits to introducing this type of business to St. Paul which I believe makes the sauna a very unique idea in many ways.

About You

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About You

First Name

David

Last Name

Schmit

City

Minneapolis

County

Hennepin

Country

United States, MN

Website (if you have one)

Names of others who helped contribute to my idea

How did you hear about the Forever Saint Paul Challenge?

Star Tribune

About Your Organization (if applicable)

Organization Name (if applicable)

Finnish Sauna Start-up

Organization Website

Organization Phone

651-336-9333

Organization Address

651-336-9333

City

Minneapolis

Organization Country

United States, MN, Hennepin County

Your idea

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Title of your idea

Reintroducing the Finnish Sauna

Give us the highlights of your idea for making Saint Paul great (2,000 characters maximum or approx. 250 words)

I am proposing to reintroduce the tradition of a Finnish native sauna to St. Paul, spread information about the many health benefits and the history associated with it, correct wrong impressions and emphasize the meaning of sauna bathing for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Ideally my vision would utilize the Municipal Grain Terminal or Harriet Island Pavilion because of their proximity to the Mississippi River. These buildings would be ideal for a business geared towards the sauna. Being on the river would allow for bathers to monopolize on the proximity to the water as well as allow patrons to enjoy the view of downtown St. Paul. Other properties within St. Paul could also be renovated to accommodate a sauna.
I would utilize other local resources such as using diseased birch and elm trees to burn as the primary heat source for the saunas. I would use the Mississippi River to generate electricity. If the situation would allow, I would like to have a small café that would promote healthy eating, hydration and emphasize on cuisine native to Finland and Sweden, but sourced from local farms and suppliers.
The idea of a sauna isn’t new but one that is geared towards bringing the community together, especially in the winter when a lot of us feel delegated to our homes to wait out the snowy months. This would be a business that would introduce thousands of people to a pastime that has deep roots in their heritage. Exposing individuals to a way of life that gave their ancestors many years of health and happiness. There are cultural, environmental, historical, and health benefits to introducing this type of business to St. Paul which I believe makes the sauna a very unique idea in many ways.

Website address (if applicable)

Innovation

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What makes your idea different or unexpected? (4000 characters maximum or approx. 500 words)

“There is nothing that Finns have been so unanimous about as their sauna. This unanimity has remained unbroken for centuries and is sure to continue as long as there are children born in their native land, as long as the invitation still comes from the porch threshold in the evening twilight: “The sauna is ready.” – Mailia Talvio

The idea of a finnish sauna isn't new on a global level, but it is a tradition that has been lost locally. Reintroducing this past time to a population that is largely routed in Finnish heritage would benefit people of all ages. Also introducing this practice would create new traditions to people of all backgrounds for many many years.

Impact

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This Entry is about (Issues)

How will your idea make a difference in Saint Paul? (4000 characters maximum or approx. 500 words)

Sometime is the last 400 years, since the Finnish people settled in America the practice of the sauna has died out. What was once a daily or weekly gathering among families, friends, neighbors and town folk has now been an element that only remains in gyms, hotels and an occasional campground and private facilities. The regular practice of bathing as the Finns once did has been lost almost altogether. Reintroducing this tradition to one of the largest communities of Finnish Heritage in the country would have a huge cultural impact.

Sustainability

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Why do you think people will recognize or remember your idea after it comes to life? How might it inspire others to do something similar in their community? (4000 characters maximum or approx. 500 words)

There are cultural, environmental, historical, and health benefits to introducing this type of business to St. Paul which I believe makes the sauna a very unique idea in many ways. I also believe that other communities might look at this as a model for businesses of similar type. It is very conceivable that thru the sauna communities could be more engaging. People could be healthier, less stressed and have another method of coping with the long cold winter, dealing with tired sore muscles in the summer or just finding another reason to be social year round.

apolinario sasam said: Well, I would surely want to have a sauna around the place. My friends and I would really like that. I just like saunas it feels good ... about this Competition Entry. - 2670 days ago read more >

David Schmit updated this Competition Entry. - 2891 days ago

David Schmit updated this Competition Entry. - 2893 days ago

David Schmit submitted this idea. - 2893 days ago