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Ölands Skördefest - the story in english

ÖLANDS HARVEST FESTIVAL

September the 25th to the 28th 2014

Öland´s Harvest Festival (Ölands Skördefest) attracted a lot of visitors already during its first year in 1997 and has grown into Swedens most popular autumn festival. The festival revives an ancient farmers tradition of celebrating Michaelmas, the closure of the growing season of the year, when the harvest was collected and the animals were brought into the stable for the winter. This was followed by a large Michaelmas feast, a celebration surpassed only by the Christmas celebrations, and Michaelmas markets, where the newly harvested products were traded. Ölands Harvest festival builds on this tradition and is used as a springboard for exhibiting off the islands fine cuisine and introducing new food products and rich culture.

Pumpkins symbolize the Harvest Festival. Pumpkins have become so prominent on the island that a journalist once described Öland as the ?Kingdom of Pumpkins?.  During the festival, throughout the island of Öland, from the lighthouse Long Erik on the northern tip of the island to the lighthouse Long Jan on the southern tip, as many as 900 activities take place which attracts well over 100 000 visitors. The islanders generously open up their doors and invite the public to village celebrations, Fairs, Markets, Festivals, Art Shows, Hot Air Balloon events, to name a few.

The Öland´s Harvest Festival starts with an opening ceremony during Thursday afternoon, in the ?Öland Village of the year?. The crown Princess Victoria and the former Swedish Prime Minister, Göran Persson, are among the exclusive group that has opened the inauguration ceremony. During the ceremony there is music, children choirs are common and lots of fire and lights.

During Friday and Saturday night, the ?Art Nights?, the Harvest Festival lights up the autumn nights. These are nights of unforgettable happenings around Öland. Wherever you find the Symbol of the Festival, a pumpkin on a pack of straw, people are invited in for a special ?art happening?.  This event is so popular that there are traffic jams otherwise never seen.

All activities around the whole of Öland take place from Thursday evening to Sunday evening. There are also activities during the Festival Week.

One of the ideas with the Festival has been to create a new tourist season. This has successfully been accomplished. Another successful idea has been to create the feeling of co-operation over the whole of Öland and between the different actors on Öland. Öland´s Harvest Festival works and stands for increased interest for Öland all year around, a living countryside, increased accessibility, successful industry and commerce business.

Welcome to Öland´s Harvest Festival!