Fiery celebration by the sea

Midsummer celebration in the Oslo FjordAker brygge.Midsummer celebration in the Oslo Fjord.Photo: Vidar Ruud / NTB scanpix

At Aker Brygge in Oslo and many other places along the coast  midsummer bonfires lit up the Thursday evening. In Bergen a fire got out of control.

The fire brigade and police gave those who had made the bonfire by Fanastølen,in the southern part of the municipality, permission to let it burn out.
At several other places firefighters had to turn out after reports of smoke and flame from disposable barbecues that were thrown in the garbage without being properly extinguished.

People using midsummer bonfires to dispose of waste, including things that may emit hazardous fumes, has become a problem.


In Kristiansand the municipality has  inspected the fires which were ready in advance of the celebration, and those containing hazardous waste, has been marked with a red tag.

– We have tried to get hold of all the five who got a red patch on their Midsummer fires. We have  only been  met with positive reactions when we have followed up on those people. People remove to the best of their capability the things that can not be burned, and bring them to the places where they are to be brought, says environmental consultant Solvor B. Stølevik in municipal unit of city and society.
The traditional bonfire on Slinning Odden in Ålesund, known as Slinning bonfire, won’t be lit until Saturday . The aim  according to Sunnmørsposten is to make it 45-meter high – and thus beat the world record of 40.45 meters from 2010.

Christian and pagan
Midsummer  commemorates the John the Baptist’s birth on June 24. Midsummer Eve is celebrated the night before.
However, according to the Norwegian Encyclopedia, the celebrations are tied  more to folk traditions than ecclesiastical traditions, which may be because it has replaced older traditions of midsummer and the pagan midsummer feast. Midsummer is also known as Jonsok or St.Hans.


Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today