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Sámi National Day: Holiday in Norway on February 6

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Sámi National Day is celebrated in Norway every year on February 6.

Sami National Day is named after the Sámi minority living in Lapland, a region on the Scandinavian peninsula. 

During this period, various events related to the Sámi people were held throughout Norway.

In this article, I would like to explain in detail the content and origins of the Sámi Day holiday.

What is Sámi National Day?

In Norway, there is an annual holiday on February 6 called “Sami National Day,” which is related to the Sámi minority in Scandinavia. 

The Sámi are nomadic people who live with their reindeer in Lapland, located in the northern part of the Scandinavian Peninsula.

Sámi National Day was established as a Norwegian national holiday in 1992.

Since then, every year on February 6, Sámi National Day, the Sámi flag is flown in the Nordic countries of Norway, Finland, and Sweden, all located on the Scandinavian Peninsula.

In addition, Sámi related events are held throughout Norway on this day to deepen understanding of Sámi culture and history.

There are Sámi cultural festivals, film festivals, and lectures in Norwegian cities, and schools and kindergartens also have Sámi culture curriculums.

February 6 is ” Sámi National Day” because it was about 100 years ago.

It was the first Sámi National Day when the first Sámi National Assembly was held in Trondheim, Norway, from February 6-9, 1917.

https://hokuou-info.com/2021/10/09/trondheim/

About the Sámi people

Many people think of the Ainu people of Hokkaido when they think of ethnic minorities in Japan.

The Sámi are indigenous people who have lived in Lapland, an area further north on the Scandinavian Peninsula in Northern Europe, with a unique way of life since long ago.

Traditionally, the Sámi have lived as nomads, primarily reindeer herders.

They live in Lapland, a region stretching across the Nordic countries of Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Russia, all of which are part of the Scandinavian Peninsula.

Lapland does not have clearly defined borders like countries or provinces.

Generally, the area north of 66°33′ north latitude is often indicated.

According to one theory, the Sámi people have lived on the Scandinavian peninsula for 10,000 years.

Today, however, the number of Sámi who continue to live the traditional lifestyle is on the decline due to the modernization of Northern Europe.

It is estimated that less than 10% of the Sámi are nomadic reindeer herders as they once were, and most Sámi live the same lifestyle as modern people.

Until Sámi National Day was established

As mentioned earlier, the background for establishing Sámi National Day is the First Sámi Congress, which took place from February 6 to February 9, 1917.

The first Sámi congress was held in the city of Trondheim in Sør-Trøndelag, Norway, and contributed significantly to the advancement of human rights and political participation of the Sámi people.

And one of the principal architects of the Sami Congress was an activist named Elsa Laula Renberg.

Elsa Laula Renberg was born in 1877 in Tärnaby, Norway.

After studying in Stockholm, she founded the first Sámi association, The South Sámi Fatmomakka Association, in 1904.

Then, on February 6, 1917, the first Sámi Congress was held.

She chaired the organizing committee for that Congress.

Conclusion

Sámi National Day, February 6, is a holiday celebrated throughout Norway with events related to the Sámi people.

The Sámi are indigenous people who have led a nomadic life with reindeer on the Scandinavian peninsula since ancient times.

Sámi National Day is an important celebration to learn about their culture and traditions.