End of Season 2 Credits

Season 2 Credits

Season 2 Credits
I decided that, like Season 1, I would also record 16 episodes for Season 2. Now it’s time to take a look back at Season 2 of the Explore Finland Radio Show, to consider the topics covered and thank everyone that agreed to be interviewed. You can still keep in touch on the various social media and don’t forget to let me know what subjects you want me to cover in season three, you never know I might find just the right person to speak to.

 

Guests: See the Show Notes!

Listen to the show  on your preferred podcast player  – iTunes or Stitcher radio or Feedburner

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End of Season 1 Credits

Season 1 Credits Show

I’ve reached a convenient point to pause and take a look back at ‘season one’ of the Explore Finland Radio Show. I will return in the Autumn 2015 for a second season, but I wanted to take a few moments to consider the topics covered and thank everyone that agreed to be interviewed. You can still keep in touch on the various social media and don’t forget to let me know what subjects you want me to cover in season two, you never know I might find just the right person to speak to.

Guests: See the Show Notes!

Listen to the show  on your preferred podcast player  – iTunes or Stitcher radio or Feedburner

Download MP3 file of this episode

Read the Show Notes

Apollo FC: The Pink Dogs’ Noble Goals

Apollo Collage Lg2

Season 1 Episode 16 Mikael & Jarl Matti proclaim Finland’s
‘Pink Revolution’
There is something in the air in South Ostrobothnia. In this episode, I speak to two members of a new football club in Seinäjoki, which has the noble aim of raising money for charity, while also providing a destination for retired footballers.

Guests: Mikael Muurimäki and Jarl Matti Antilla, Apollo FC players

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Apollo FC and Finland’s ‘Pink Revolution’

Season 1 Episode 16 Mikael & Jarl Matti proclaim Finland’s
‘Pink Revolution’

Listen to this podcast episode here

Guests: Mikael Muurimäki and Jarl Matti Antilla, Apollo FC players

There is something in the air in Seinäjoki. What started as a small idea among a group of friends is blooming into something altogether more touching, caring and beautiful – not words that you usually associate with the game of Association Football. That ‘something’ is named Apollo FC. It is the rebirth of a team that existed in Seinäjoki back in the 1980’s. Now with a purpose, a cause that has caught the imagination of everyone that hears about it.

It began when a group of former players from Seinäjoen Jalkapallokerho (SJK), decided that they wanted to continue playing organised football with players of a similar standard. They cast around for team-mates, found that they had over 20 possible names, and so registered to play in the lower divisions of the football pyramid in Finland, securing a place in the 6th division.

This squad includes former fan favourites Mikael Muurimäki, SJK’s record goal scorer from it’s days in Kakkonen (Finland’s 3rd tier) and Luis Fernando, SJK’s oldest player who played in the 2014 Veikkausliiga aged 35. In fact, the age of the players in the squad ranges from 25 – 55 years.

Apollo FC club badge, resurrected from the 1980's and now in pink

Apollo FC club badge, resurrected from the 1980’s and now in pink

I spent some time discussing Apollo FC players Mikael Muurimäki and Jarl Matti Antilla.  Jarl Matti is also managing the team’s media work around his busy day job. The fact that a new team, playing in the Finnish 6th division needs a media manager says a lot. The first hint that they may have hit on something special was when they attracted 1000 Facebook ‘likes’ within the first week. No mean achievement.

Jarl Matti explained that Apollo FC ‘manifesto’ has now has two aims;

  1. to be a place for players of a certain standard (including some former professionals)  to continue competing alongside old friends.
  2. to use the interest in the team to raise money for charity.

Once they realised that there was interest in the team from around Finland, they decided to divert that coverage and exposure elsewhere. Somewhere it could do good. The charity they will support in 2015 is Roosanauha (http://oma.syopasaatio.fi/roosa-nauha/5-2013) the breast cancer charity that is identified by a Pink Ribbon. The team will play in bright pink shirts and have the nickname Pinkitkoirat, the Pink Dogs. In 2015, Apollo will also use the slogan ‘For All Womankind’.

www.roosanauha.fi – The Pink Ribbon, 2015-style

http://www.roosanauha.fi – The Pink Ribbon, 2015-style

This is what has really grabbed the attention of people in the Etelä-Pohjanmaa region. Encouraged businesses to sponsor the team. Made people buy merchandise for a team that has hardly played a game.  Look forward to seeing them play in the Regions Cup – like the non-league, FA Trophy in the UK! It is because ‘there is no good reason not to support the cause’. Everyone has a Mum, a Wife, a Daughter, everyone can relate to this cause.

SJK has worked hard over the past few years to build a real football culture in the town and Matti feels some of this is now reflecting on Apollo. This, and the fact that the Apollo squad also includes people in regular jobs, who have some ability but never played in the pro-game. That the squad includes a local bank manager, for example, helps build a connection with potential fans.

At the start of the season, Apollo FC decided it would aim to raise 5,000€ for the Roosanauha charity. That is pretty ambitious for year one, but after just two practice games, it seems they might have to adjust their sights. By the middle of April, only two months since launching the club, Apollo has raised 3,700€ and it shows no sign of stopping. Jarl Matti and Mikael were, unsurprisingly, proud and humble at what had been achieved so quickly, but they still have a ‘hundred’ fundraising ideas. The only limit is the fact that there are only 24 hours in a day.

SJK has been supportive of Apollo, but it doesn’t stop there. It has already been announced that there will be an event in summer 2015 involving Apollo, SJK and HJK Helsinki. That’s HJK who will be playing in Champions League qualifiers and SJK, who will be playing in Europa League qualifiers, taking the time to support the efforts of this new team from Seinäjoki.

That said, it is not just Apollo that is trying to redefine what a football club should be. Aki Riihilahti, the current CEO of HJK Helsinki, is one of the founder members and honourary ‘captains’ of Peace United. The former Crystal Palace and Finland player founded the club following a visit to the Za’atr refugee camp in Jordan, where he was inspired by the work of Finn Church Aid.

You can read more about Peace United here http://www.peaceunited.fi/en/, and the work of Finn Church Aid here http://www.kirkonulkomaanapu.fi/en/

Although Apollo FC and Peace United have different aims, they have a similar ethos, one of giving, one of doing things for others. A revolution? Well maybe not strictly speaking, but clearly there is something in the air, something rather refreshing in the era of £5 billion TV deals. You never know, there might even be a few good games of football as well.

If you want to learn more about Apollo FC or, better still, want to support the fund-raising efforts, you can contact them at any of the following places;

  • Facebook https://www.facebook.com/apollofi
  • Twitter https://twitter.com/pinkitkoirat   @pinkitkoirat
  • Instagram https://instagram.com/apolloseinajoki
  • Website http://www.apollofutis.fi/

You can find all of my previous content on SJK here https://explorefinlandpodcast.com/tag/sjk/

International Students in Finland, 2of2

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Season 1 Episode 15 International Students Studying in Finland
Junyi, Betti & Miia Explain All, Part 2
This is a continuation of a conversation, where we talk about experiences of moving to Finland, business culture in South Ostrobothnia, what Betti and Winnie do in their free-time and, of course, the weather.

Guests:

  • Jinyu (Winnie) Ding & Betti Csiba – International Students.
  • Miia Koski – Student counsellor, Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences.

Listen to the show  on your preferred podcast player  – iTunes or Stitcher radio or Feedburner

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Read the Show Notes

The 2015 General Elections in Finland

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Season1 Episode 14 On The Election Trail with
‘Henna Rantasaari #135’
In this episode, I speak to Henna about the upcoming elections here in Finland. She explains how the political system works, how the Parliamentary seats are allocated and how the Government is formed.

Guest: Henna Rantasaari, Green Party Candidate

Listen to the show  on your preferred podcast player  – iTunes or Stitcher radio or Feedburner

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Read the Show Notes

International Students in Finland, 1of2

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Season1 Episode 13 International Students Studying in Finland, Junyi, Betti & Miia Explain All, Part 1
In this episode, I meet Junyi Ding & Betti Csiba, who tell me about life as an international student at Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences (SeAMK). Many thanks to Miia Koski from SeAMK for arranging (and participating in) the recording.

Guests: Jinyu (Winnie) Ding & Betti Csiba – International Students. Miia Koski – Student counsellor, SeAMK

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High-speed Motor Racing On Ice at Botniaring

Icerace Collage2

Season 1 Episode 12 High-speed Motor Racing (on ice!) with Kristiina
In this episode, I speak to race organiser Kristiina ahead of the VillaAPR Icerace at the Botniaring race track in Jurva, Etelä-Pohjanmaa. Listen as she tells me about the meeting, the track and the facilities, before I visit the APR Icerace in February 2015.

Guest: Kristiina Vaalasmaa

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Salibandy* in Seinäjoki (*Floorball, Unihockey…)

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S1 Ep11 Tuukka talks SPV, Salibandy & Success
In this episode I get an introduction to the game of Salibandy (Floorball; Unihockey; Innebandy) from Tuukka Kiviranta, who plays for the high-flying SPV team from Seinäjoki. Tuukka explains the rules and tactics of the game, and tells me about the history, and recent success of SPV.

Guest: Tuukka Kiviranta, Floorball player

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Finland’s Olympic Training Centre, Kuortane

OTC Collage

Season 1 Episode 10 Training for Olympic Success with Olli-Pekka:
It will take more than a 30 minute podcast to get me into peak fitness, but this week I get a guided tour of the Olympic Training Centre in Kuortane.

Guest: Olli-Pekka Karjalainen, European Gold medal winner

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Continue reading

Distilling, Prohibition & Koskenkorva Vodka

Season 1 Episode 9 Jaakko & Martti’s Tour of Koskenkorva Museum:
Join me as I visit the Koskenkorva Museo and learn about the history of distilling in Koskenkorva, as well as the distinctive local clocks, Könnikello, and we take another, brief tour around the saunas at Koskenkorva Trahteeri, until we end up at the ‘vodka tap’! Intrigued?

Guests: Jaakko & Martti Koskenkorva

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A Tour of the Aalto Centre, Seinäjoki pt.2

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Season 1 Episode 8. Part 2 of 2
I continue my guided tour of the Alvar Aalto centre in Seinäjoki, by visiting Aalto’s theatre (with it’s collection of glass and porcelain by Alvar & Aino Aalto) and the new Apila library next door to Aalto’s original. (Episode 1 can be found here. )

Guest: Marianne Holma, Seinäjoki City Guide

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A Tour of the Aalto Centre, Seinäjoki pt.1

Episode 7 – Marianne’s Guided Tour of the Alvar Aalto Centre in Seinäjoki, part 1

Episode 7 – Marianne’s Guided Tour of the Alvar Aalto Centre in Seinäjoki, part 1

Season 1 Episode 7: Part 1 of 2.
Marianne takes me on a guided tour of the Alvar Aalto centre, in Seinäjoki, a cluster of six, civic buildings that form its iconic centrepiece. Alvar and Aino Aalto are arguably Finland’s greatest designers and, in part 1, you can hear Marianne describe the Town Hall and Lakeuden Risti Church.

Guest: Marianne Holma, Seinäjoki City Guide

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Just Why Is The Sauna So Important To Finns?

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Season 1 Episode 6
In this episode I speak to Jaakko and Martti Koskenkorva about the most recognisable Finnish word in the world, Sauna. I visited them at Koskenkorva Trahteeri to talk about the history, the traditions and why the sauna is so important to the Finns.

Guests: Jaakko & Martti Koskenkorva

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Buying & Selling in Finland’s Flea-Markets

Kirppis

Season 1 Episode 5
I speak to Henna about the significance of the Kirppis in Finland. We attend an event to sell some clothes and I then visit a few other types of Kirpputorit in Seinäjoki to compare & contrast.

Guest: Henna Rantasaari

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Evie Goes to Restaurant Day in Vaasa

Restaurant Day

Season 1 Episode 4
Restaurant Day (Ravintolapäivä) originated in Helsinki, so I travel to nearby Vaasa, with my daughter Evie, to visit some of the pop-up restaurants and speak to some of the restaurant organisers about their experiences.

Guests: Heimo Oksanen, Walter Syö, Malin Holm and Evie Wiltshear

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Finnish Football Culture and the Rise of SJK

 https://explorefinlandpodcast.wordpress.com/2014/11/09/episode003/

Season1 Episode 3
Lari talks about the origins of football culture in Finland, and the history of Seinäjoen Jalkapallokerho (SJK)

Guest: Lari Paski, Supporters Liaison Officer at SJK and football fanatic

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Foraging for Mushrooms in Finland’s Forests

k: http://explorefinlandpod cast.wordpress.com/2014/11/03/episode001

Season 1 Episode 1
Foraging for Mushrooms with Mari. An introduction to ‘Everyman’s Rights’ and the art of finding wild mushrooms.

Guest: Mari Dawe, Mother Nature’s ambassador to Seinäjoki

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