Nov 04-04

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2004: November: Nov 04-04
Seaside Seats    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Z-Man
Shoreline Art    ...scroll down to share comments
Photos by Z-Man

Mary Drew at Pasty Central on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 07:34 am:

While cruising to work one morning, Z-Man spotted some new-sprung scenery along L'Anse Bay. There were hundreds of them lining the shoreline, so I'm sure his first thoughts were that these items were some kind of new-fangled beach chairs. When in all actuality the pieces are chairs transformed into works of art for the upcoming Finn Grand Fest 2005, which is going to take place in Marquette, next summer during the month of August. According to the info on the webpage, there are 'Paint Parties' in various communities, so as to get oodles of chairs ready for the Fest. Like these chairs proclaim, a project of this magnitude takes real Sisu! Some may ask....'Why do them?' The Finn Grand Fest organizer's reply is, "They're a sign of hospitality and welcome. They provide a place for people to sit, shoot the breeze, deepen old friendships, and make new ones." Sounds similar to the reason for our own Pasty Cam webpages!

Sisu = guts, perseverance, grit, nerve, pluck.

By smf in troll land on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 07:38 am:

Good morning everyone - neat pics.

By Tony MI on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 07:38 am:

Alright, first post of the day! Good morning from Mt. Pleasant

Tony... these days you can catch the Early Bird over in

By Dick B. with the Trolls a little longer on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 07:42 am:

Looks like a fun time ahead, please keep us posted as to the specifics. Love the farm scene on the second photo. I always did like those curve roofed barns. I remember talking with Hank Holman about how he built his up from boards soaked to allow them to be formed into the curves in layers.

By BWL mi on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 07:43 am:

Good morning all!

By doclaak in ohio on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 07:44 am:

More Finn Power to those sustaining the Sisu heritage.

By Betty, AZ on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 07:46 am:

Beautiful art work on the farm scene.
Have a great day everyone.

By maijaMI on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:03 am:

The farm bench is awesome. The barn looks like something from the old 3D "viewmaster." Just jumps out of the painting.

I am so glad to learn about this and will try to be up there at the time. Would be grateful for more specific dates if anyone has them.

By Frances S. Georgia on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:12 am:

I don't know anything about Sisu, but now I'll do some reading about it.
Great Pictures and great tallent to accomplish these works of art.

By "The Z-Man" on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:17 am:

Good morning from Milwaukee
Dates,times,events,can be found at

By Lorelei, MI on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:23 am:

Can anyone join in on the "paint parties"? Are there any in the Copper Country area? I would love to do something like that. Sounds like so much fun. If anyone knows anything please post.

By Kevin K. Lodi, CA on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:26 am:

Good Morning from the Central Valley.
Why are the bench's and chair's being stored outside? Or are they going to move them inside for the winter?

By Yooper in MN on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:26 am:

My aunt had a sweatshirt that said SISU with the Finnish flag below it (which to a small child looked a little like a plus sign). We used to call it her "Guts Plus" sweatshirt. Maybe I'll be able to find one for myself at the Finn Grand Fest next summer!

By Lori... Commerce Twp on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:30 am:

Question for Zman: Were these chairs on the beach along Keweenaw bay? Just curious to know why they were displayed there...

By Darkstar on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:37 am:

Those chairs are going to be badly weathered by the time things roll around.

By "The Z-Man" on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:38 am:

The chairs were displayed for one day on the south side of Keweenaw bay. These where L'Anse and Baraga portion on chairs for the 2005 Grand Finn Fest. I was told that there are other cities doing this same thing. Maybe someone will chime in with some more info on other cities.

By Steve in VA on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:40 am:

Are these by the same people who painted a bunch of chairs that were on display this past summer up in Hancock and, later, along U.S. 41 in Baraga?

By Darkstar on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:53 am:

Where are they going to store them all until next year?

By Kate, CA on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:59 am:

Good Morning! Z man, I was tryin to do a search of the guest gallery for some of your photos but nothing came up. Have you got anything in there? How about a link? I'd like to see what you've been doing lately!

By "The Z-Man" on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 09:02 am:

By UP dreamer stuck in NJ on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 09:07 am:

Z-Man, you are an amazing photographer. I especially love the black & white photo with the full color Monarch in your guest album...gorgeous!

By TL Longpre, South Carolina on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 09:25 am:

Firstly - GORGEOUS bench painting - bravo to the artist! I love the blue tones on white - excellent!

Second - thank you, Mary for the definition of "Sisu"... I am not of Finnish ancestry but spent my childhood in the UP, and have often wondered what that meant - I'd always thought it was a "naughty" word! :)

By FRNash/PHX, AZ on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 10:18 am:

From some of the questions I'd guess a lot of our visitors don't quite understand the choice of colors on the chairs and benches. The blue and white are from the Finnish national flag:

Finnish national flag

By Judi Cuba City, WI on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 10:52 am:

What great pictures, SISU always make me smile. Hope to sit on one of those chairs next summer. Will have a Finnish Mass City Maki Cousin Reunion at the same time.

By mtu, texas on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 11:05 am:

*** Only 2 more days until the Bash at the Big House ***

get your tickets and come out and support the MTU Football Huskies in Ann Arbor.

By Marsha, Genesee/Aura on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 11:28 am:

Last summer they were collecting donated chairs at a house across from Keweenaw Bay and the artist painted them there. I can't remember her name; I'd know it if I heard it. A few summers ago she collected hundreds of poles in the Marquette Park. They were placed in the ground and anyone who wanted to could paint and decorate them to represent their family, organization, business, or whatever. Maybe someone has a picture of that?

By Alex Tiensivu, Georgia on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 11:29 am:

I think there should be TWO Early Bird Awards... One for each! :)

By Marsha on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 11:34 am:

The artist I mentioned above is Mary Wright.

By Kris, MTU '81, now in SE Mich. on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 12:04 pm:

OK - since someone mentioned the "Bash at the Big House" should all of us visitors where PASTY tags so we can meet each other? It's going to be so much fun. GO HUSKIES.

PS - I want one of those SISU chairs for my backyard. They're great.

By non finn on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 12:29 pm:

How is sisu pronounced?

sis sue
see sue

By Finnish Yooper on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 12:51 pm:

Sis Sue with the accent on the Sis.

By Hilary Virtanen, schooling in Indiana on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 12:51 pm:

Hello. For more information on FinnGrandFest activities, including painting parties, go to This fest is great because it is a combination of FinnFest USA and the Canadian's Finnish GrandFest. Also, I know 2 pronunciations of sisu:
si-sue (Short i sound, soft s-sound)
si-zoo (short i-sound, harder s or z sound)

Officially, Finnish phonetic rules would have the s be soft, but we're American Finns and we can say it how we like, right? ;}

Fingliskaa puhutaan!

By Dave, Grand Rapids on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 01:25 pm:

Speaking of the 'Bash at the Big House'. Check out today's Detroit Free Press. Go HUSKIES!! Beat the Lakers!

oh yea..go Flivvers!!

By Ms. Katie, Il. on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 02:05 pm:

Can we Irish adopt the SiSU motto? Well I'm gonna>

By half finn, half cousin jack on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 02:45 pm:

My vote is for: Sis Sue !!!

By AA, MI on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 02:46 pm:

Yes! We need a big representation at the MTU Alumni tent.

By ra on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 03:26 pm:

Just exactly what is a pluck? And how do you do it?

Pluck has various definitions, but for the purpose of defining 'Sisu', the meaning is:
pluck: noun 3: courageous readiness to fight or continue against odds : dogged resolution. :->

By NMU on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 03:39 pm:

Great Pics, Go Huskies, represent the UP.

By Rachel, IL on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 03:51 pm:

Sisu is what you need when you go from a hot sauna into a snowbank! With no clothes on!

By True Finn on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 04:01 pm:

Rachel,IL, or into lake Superior!

By Kyle, Wisconsin on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 04:01 pm:

That is really cool! I live in Green Bay and nobody knows what Sisu is. •••• right I do!!! I am originally from Ontonagon. That aren't to many Finlanders around here, but I'm proud to me one of them. "Ahola" isn't exactly German or Polish if you know what I mean!!!!

By True Finn on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 04:20 pm:

SISU= sauna 160 degrees, outside temp 18 degrees, water temp lake superior 39 degrees!

By True Finn on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 04:22 pm:

Forgot to add, Hot shower after dip in superior, priceless!

By DuneRat, Norton Shores on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 04:26 pm:

Anyone remember the news story many years ago about the cartographer who worked for the State of Michigan...about two months before he retired he added a little town called Sisu to the official state transportation map? I vaguely remember it appeared on the map somewhere near Nestoria. Seems to me they sort of got mad at him but he more or less got away with it. Does anyone remember if that version of the map ever got printed and distributed?

By Helen on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 05:14 pm:

I am glad to see your pictures that you took that day, finally made it to the!! These should absolutely also be WOW!! Kudos to the pictures.

By Patti, TN on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 07:04 pm:

Great pictures, and original idea. It looks great spread out along the shoreline.

Also, this 'new' format, which is really the 'old/original' format seem to be working great. Keep up the good work.

By Former South Ranger on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:07 pm:

Looks like "Sisu the Clown" will have his pick of personalized chairs!!!

By julie b., MI on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:14 pm:

Yes, you are correct! He also put 'goblu' near the Ohio border - and he did get away with it because i had a copy of the map.

By PFD, MI on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 08:30 pm:

Neat pictures today! I saw the chairs on my way back to Houghton after a quick trip downstate..and also had the pleasure of seeing the chairs that were on Ryan St. near Finlandia University this summer. I think I might just find an old chair and paint it myself. Does that sound like a good plan, little sister???

By sorry gang on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 09:03 pm:

I do not think this is the page we should be one for this topic..
but michigan history magazine told of the guy who did that on the map maybe 15 yrs ago..sorry now charlie is gonna raise the price on my next pasty order ..for posting here.

By Ken ja Mimi from da UP on Thursday, November 4, 2004 - 11:48 pm:

Mary Wright got the whole Finnish thing going with the painted chairs a few years ago. Then she had us make pillowcases or cloths with old pictures of family and homesteads and farms printed on them to put on a clothesline for display. They were at Covington and different Finn gatherings and dances before going to Toronto (think it was Toronto) and then to Finland for a Finnish/American festival. Ken and Mimi are both 100% Suomilainen! TGIF = Thank God I'm Finnish! :>)

By John-Canton Mi on Friday, November 5, 2004 - 12:41 am:

Two cents worth, like the new format. Do not get on here for politics or religion but for the great pictures and comments about the U.P.. Thanks.

By Lin, Se lower MI on Saturday, November 6, 2004 - 11:23 pm:

Love the chairs...want to do one of my own. Would confuse people downstate, here, tho. Guess I'll just have to make a trip up with it...

By Jenness Jacobson Joque on Monday, November 8, 2004 - 12:34 pm:

I loved this idea from the last Finn Fest in Marquette and have a bench painted in the Finnish Flag motif outside my front door here on Taproot Farm in Washington State. It's a great place to set bags and things and to change from boots into shoes for the house. I have an old kitchen chair outside the kitchen door and will be painting it this winter to also be blue and white. Having a farm with orchards and lots of evergreens and woods gives me a real feeling of being in the UP again on the farm I never grew up on but wished I had. With my Mt. Rainier view and the weather corner to keep an eye on, this animal sanctuary has become a personal sanctuary for our family and friends. It's the Finn in me coming out. Hope to be in Marquette in August. Jen Joque

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