Monday, May 9, 2011
Walpurgis Night( Valborg in Sweden), is a day in Sweden and many other Northern European countries intended to celebrate the coming of spring, commonly accompanied by large bonfires and other traditions, on April 30th and May 1st.
Celebrations differ even within Sweden. Calm or traditional celebrations are found in Stockholm or non-University cities. The most pronounced celebrations are in the two main University cities of Uppsala, as well as here in Lund. Here in Lund, on May 1st, the men's choir sings on the steps of the academic building in the town center, and this has been broadcast for years to the rest of the country on live TV.
I guess, however, that if the men's choir singing is considered a big celebration, then we're in trouble. The celebration that really engulfs the city focuses around its university population and takes place on Saturday.
Essentially, groups of students from all over the University, thousands, plus people from neighboring cities (Malmo, Copenhagen), get up early, between 7 & 8am, and begin the day with some champagne and breakfast. Then, they drink some more, and then more, and well, for thousands of people it seems to amount to a whole day of intoxication. This is accompanied by picnics, barbecuing, and lots of dancing.
The whole event takes place in the city park of Lund. It was reported that a record 25,000 people were in the park. The pictures below show the massive crowds.
A sad part of this whole event is that the amount of trash created and wreckage left behind is unbelievable. The city had to pay 150 people to clean up after all these people. A little theme I've noticed here, university student's seem to expect other people to pick up after themselves.
This photo is titled 'Stupidity Reigns'
Andrej, Dennis, Mark:
The bonfire pre-burning:
In the US these guys at the very least probably get kicked out. In Sweden, the police tell them to get down, shake their hand, and have a laugh:
People dancing to some electronic music:
The wreckage. I think the can collectors enjoyed this day.