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Helsinki celebrates the 104th anniversary of Finland by organising dozens of free-of-charge events in various parts of the city on the Independence Day and eve, 5th and 6th December. The aim of the events is to celebrate the return to urban life and to support the recovery of the culture and events sector. COVID-19 safety instructions are followed at events.

The Independence Day and Eve events are free of charge and aimed at Helsinki residents of all ages. The events will include music and theatre performances, plays, fire circus, rap workshops and the Tour of Choirs.

"During the COVID-19 pandemic, most urban life has been at a standstill. Although the coronavirus crisis is not yet over, we want to celebrate the return to urban life on the eve of Independence Day, 5 December, and in the weeks before Christmas. The programme will also support the recovery of the culture and events sector. The events will take place on the eve of Independence Day, because the eve of festive days is often celebrated in Finland. We want to make the Independence Day Eve hopeful, beautiful and joyful, while at the same time showing our compassion for those to whom the COVID-19 pandemic has been full of sadness, loneliness and loss," says Tommi Laitio, Executive Director for Culture and Leisure, about the eve's programme.

In addition to the Independence Day Eve, the city will host diverse programme during the weeks before Christmas. The full programme for Independence Day and December is available on the tapahtumat.hel.fi website. The events are free of charge and without age restrictions, unless otherwise specified. Programme changes are possible.

Picks from Sunday, 5 December's programme offering:

  • Christmas jumble sale at the City Museum will offer crafts and Christmas delicacies. The Christmas jumble sale includes vendors, such as the Uusix workshops, Vanhankaupungin suklaa, Kaffe Obscura and Café Ursula. Sat, 4 Dec and Sun, 5 Dec at 11:00–17:00
  • Lunch concert in the Kartanoravintola restaurant at Kustaankartano on 5 Dec at 12:45 Performers: opera singers Veli-Pekka Väisänen and Klaus Pennanen
  • Hassan Maikal meet and greet rhyming and rap workshop at Kamppi Sports Hall on 5 Dec at 13:00–14:00.
  • Happy Independence Day Eve at Kallio Library! Balalaukku dossier music and clownery performance at 13:00–13:25, Pönttö children's theatre performance at 14:00–14:25, ILO Ensemble choir performance at 15:00–15:45. 
  • Fire and light show for the whole family at Pihlajamäki Youth Park on 5 Dec at 16:00–17:00. The shows will be performed by the fire and light show group Belenos Group of Arts.
  • Tour of Choirs on 5 Dec at 16:00–18:00 will comprise choirs performing in different parts of Helsinki. For the finale, the choirs will move to the centre of Helsinki. The tour will end with the song 'Maamme', which will be performed simultaneously across the city centre.
  • Independence Day ice skating for the whole family to the beat of DJ RNo at the Oulunkylä artificial ice rink on 5 Dec at 18:30–20:30 
  • Multicultural dance performances and rap artists at Pikku-Huopalahti Youth Centre on 5 Dec at 17:00–22:00.  

Source: The Culture and Leisure Division of the City of Helsinki