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Kaljakellunta or Beer Floating 2024 in Finland

How about a weekend in a company of 5,000 beer-drinking floaters?

Dates: July 27, 2024

Kaljakellunta or Beer Floating
Kaljakellunta or Beer Floating
Kaljakellunta or Beer Floating
Kaljakellunta or Beer Floating

The name Kaljakellunta is composed of two Finnish words—"Kalja" and "kellunta," which could be roughly translated as "Beer Floating." The name lives up to reality, as the event is mostly about floating on vessels while getting drunk on beer. That's not a competition—just a weekend of sheer relaxation at Vantaa River with the other 5,000 people in inflatable boats, pools, and self-made vessels, sometimes wearing bizarre costumes.

The Floating Route

The floating route for the Beer Floating event typically varies each year. Still, it generally commences from either Tikkurila in Vantaa behind the Heureka Science Center to Kirkonkylänkoski or from Tammisto in Vantaa. Traditionally, the routes alternate between these two options annually. The Beer Floating will start from Tammisto to the Pikkukoski beach this year.

Pollution & Safety

Unfortunately, after Kaljakellunta, the neighborhood is usually a great mess. All cleaning works are left to the councils of Helsinki and Vantaa. The local government has a right to ban the action, but according to the Finnish "Every Man's Law," every man can freely walk, swim, ski, or cycle in the countryside when he or she doesn't cause any direct harm to the environment. It's widely understood that Kaljakellunta can be risky. Participants are advised to wear a life vest, drink responsibly, watch out for sharp edges on wooden rafts, and always lend a hand to friends and strangers in need.

Organization

Despite the considerable number of participants, Kaljakellunta doesn't have official organizers. The gathering is deemed spontaneous. Every year, the dates and route of a beer floating weekend are chosen by voting on social networks and announced on Kaljakellunta's webpage. This website is purely informational. Usually, this summer fun takes place on the last Saturday of July or the first Saturday of August.

History of Kaljakellunta

The Kaljakellunta event, originating from Rekola in Vantaa in 1997, began with around ten members floating down the river in inflatable dinghies while drinking beer. The event's popularity surged, prompting its website to be active from 2000 to 2005. Since 2011, participation has reached up to 5000 annually. As the festival's popularity has soared, similar beer-floating events have emerged in other Finnish towns like Oulu, Jyväskylä, and Savonlinna. However, these events remain relatively small compared to the main event in Vantaa.

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