Kauhava is famous for its amusement park Powerpark. But do you know that there's also a Knife Festival held in this Southern Ostrobothnian city during summer? Kauhava organizes the event annually a week before the midsummer weekend. A knife called puukko in the local language is a Finnish style belt knife.
This city is known for its handled hand-made knives, which are usually varnished and birch-barked. This has been one of the city's main industry as well, known as the Kauhava Knives. The Iisakki Järvenpää Factory, which been making knives since 1879, can be found in this city.
The festival highlights the knife-throwing competition but also includes handicrafts, cultural and musical programs that start from Friday and last until Sunday.
According to the festivals official website Puukkofestivalit, the event this year will be held on 14-16.6 and will begin with the handicrafts festival on Friday.
From Friday, there are many events in the citycenter starting from 9am and will last late in the evening. The market square also has the summer fair at the same time and it includes music, karaoke, and outdoor games too.
The main event will be on Saturday, where the most-awaited knife-throwing competition takes place in the Youth Association"Nuoriso Seura" House. The qualification round starts at 11am then the finals will resume at 1pm followed by the awarding of the winners at 2pm.
That same day, there is a knife exhibition and selling will be available the whole time. For families with small kids, there are many activities the kids can enjoy such as face painting, popcorn, and a bouncing castle. In the Iisakki Järvenpää knife factory, there's a tour 3x a day at 11:00, 13:00 and 15:00 for both Saturday and Sunday. There are also grilling and frying of
pancakes outside the factory. There's a hobby horse, push tractors for kids, and some loive animals such as horses and sheep. The factory offers free coffee and juice.
For the summer fair in the market square during the day, the events will be quite similar to the previous day and will start from 9am-4pm. At midday 12:00, there will be a karaoke competition event for children from under school age, to elementary and junior high school. Every participant will be given a prize.
On Sunday, events will be the same in the knife factory. There's a knife exhibition and competition for the knife-making competition in the Youth Association House
So if you are planning to visit Kauhava, try to plan it a weekend before the midsummer and attend the Knives Festival.