Easter is really a celebration of springtime, and after a lengthy break with the last of the year’s snow in focus, what could be more typically Norwegian than … topless sledding.
OK, so maybe topless sledding isn’t yet the tradition that murder and quizzes are for Easter here, it certainly has potential. And the day before Easter is
the Norwegian Topless Sledding Championship, at least it was this year, in the fishing village of Laukvik, in Lofoten in Nordland County.
According to VG, the event began as a Facebook joke after the organizer read about topless sledding in Germany. But when real interest in a ‘competition’ was generated, Sten Hansen decided to make his joke a reality.
About 500 spectators turned up – more than the number of Laukvik residents. The competition was more than an excuse to get half naked and crash into the snow. Sure, the main competition was about speed, with separate events for men and women – though a few of the photos definitely show mixed sleds, with a male sitting behind and doing his best to use his hands to cover his mate’s modesty. At least I think that’s what he was doing. I assume this was an entry in the open/creative class, which allowed teams.
Adding to the fun was a prize for most creative sledding performance. This was won by an arguably half insane team where one man acted as the sled, with a driver on his back. A fourth prize category was announced, for “Best Winter Body”, awarded to the palest participant.
An extremely content Hansen told VG that 27 people had taken part in the competition, some travelling from Oslo and Lillestrøm in the southeast for the pleasure. The total prize fund for they event was an impressive NOK 12,000 (USD 2,000).
Collections of photos from the odd day out can be seen at the organizers site: http://www.topplosaking.com/32957251 and
http://www.topplosaking.com/32957252. The photos, rather surprisingly, are nearly all ‘safe for work’.