Happy Saint Urho’s Day!

What? You haven’t heard of St. Urho? C’mon! He’s to Finland what St. Patrick is to Ireland.

St. Urho eliminated the grasshoppers who were threatening the grape crops.

Seriously.

Oh, c’mon. You buy that St. Patrick rid Ireland of snakes but you question a story about grasshoppers and grapes in Finland?

OK. It is a made-up day, sort of like Sweetest Day or Father’s Day. No one really takes them seriously. But that doesn’t stop us from buying cards or ties, now does it?

It was created by one Richard Mattson in Virginia, Minnesota over 50 years ago. The original myth was that St. Urho cast out frogs, but it has evolved to grasshoppers, just like any good myth.

And just like any good myth it has caught on and is spreading throughout many Finnish communities. Aside from a statue in Minnesota, there is even a chainsaw carved statue in Finland as well as a St. Urho’s Pub.

So go put on some royal purple and nile green clothes. Hoist a beer and shout “Heinäsirkka, heinäsirkka, mene täältä hiiteen!” (Which, depending on where you look, can be roughly translated as “Grasshopper, grasshopper, go away!”)! Everyone’s Finnish on St. Urho’s Day!

Visit the St. Urho website for more facinating information.

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