NASELLE - This summer's Naselle Finnish American Folk Festival (FAFF), "Sauna: The Saturday Night Connection," to be held on the campus of the Naselle Schools on July 30 through August 1, will feature several musical groups from Canada, Seattle and several the greater local area. A selection of the performers are as follows:
The West Coast Korsu Choir, a 15-member choir along with an accordion accompanist, sing mainly war time songs of 1939-45 as a special honor to the Finnish War Veterans who fought to preserve Finland's independence.
The Mannisto Family Musicians are a four-member family group from Seattle, with parents Heikki and Eva originally from Finland and daughter Maria and son Peter. They spend each summer in Finland. The parents perform duets of traditional Finnish folk songs while the daughter is a voice major at the U of W and the son is also a U of W student studying the violin.
The Brownsmead Flats bring their own style of "Community/Folk/Family" music. John Fenton, Ned Heavenrich, Ray Raihala, Robert Stevens and Dan Sutherland make up the group. They make their homes in Astoria and Brownsmead, Ore. - the elevated areas surrounding Blind Slough were settled by Finns in the late 1800s.
The Tanhuajat Dancers of Seattle celebrated their 30th Anniversary in May. They perform traditional Finnish folk dances in Finnish costumes. They recently performed at the FinnFest 2004 in Lake Worth, Fla.
The Naselle Maypole Dancers feature our young ladies from Naselle. Their leader, Laura Swanson - who was a once a Maypole dancer herself under the direction of her mother Barb Swanson - is on the rally squad at Gonzaga University in Spokane.
The Scandia Dancers of Astoria have appeared at all of our festivals. Founded as the Viking Dancers in 1971, they first performed at the Scandinavian Midsummer Festival in Astoria. Astorian organizers thought it would be great to have their own dancing group to perform at the festival.
For more information, contact telephone numbers 484-3376 or (800) 851-FINN, or visit our developing Web site at (finnam.naselle.net)