This is the same text that appeared in
the Fundraising Brochure, which was mailed out during the spring of 2001.
It was written by Jim Daley.
For over three-quarters of a
century the place we all call Saima Park has been a home for Finnish cultural
and sporting activities. In 1998,
the merger of the Finnish Cultural Center Inc., The Finnish Ski Club, and the
Finnish American Club of Saima gave us our new name: The Finnish Center at Saima
Park Inc. This unification brings a
new enthusiasm for the preservation of our cherished heritage, providing the
inspiration for embarking on an exciting building expansion project.
The enclosed rendition of the
planned structure shows the new additions projecting east and west from the
existing function hall, and include a library/museum and sports facility
respectively. Also an extension of
the main building, northward, will furnish storage space vital to the daily
operations of the expanded center.
Our plans for the library/museum contain elements both
classical and modern. The library's
reading room is traditional with nicely shelved books and periodicals from our
own collection. A second area will
house computer workstations. Here
visitors can access the library and museum contents, scan and print archival
material of all kinds, including photographic records.
A full Internet capability will also be available with listings of the
best US and Finnish sites such as genealogical, Finnish historical and those
featuring the latest goings-on here and in Finland.
A third area is devoted to archival storage along with adequate workspace
to catalog the records for computer entry.
The museum section is dedicated
to the display of our quality artifacts related to the Finnish-American past, as
well as those items on loan or recently donated.
We plan to rotate the displays periodically to keep a fresh, inspiring
The sports facility, although
small, is adequate for it's purpose and will have locker space, benches,
showers, and of course, traditional saunas.
Our cross-country skiing and
ice-skating programs are very popular, especially the newly developed night
skiing facility. Weekday
recreational skiing and a full, winter long, weekend racing schedule round out
these activities. The track and
field program is also expanding, and in this connection, we continue to up-grade
the Finnish Memorial Field. This
new facility will greatly augment Saima's growing athletic programs.
The Finnish Center's year-round
operational expenses are offset by income generated by renting our outdoor
facility to many civic and church groups along with indoor space for receptions,
dances and similar events. This
income, combined with membership dues, can never be enough to fund new
construction. Thus, we come to the
reason for this brochure: Your help is needed to make this expansion plan a
Included in this letter is a
pledge envelope for you to check off an amount that you can give.
All gifts will be acknowledged with various honoraria levels as shown
under the pledge envelope. Please
pledge generously so we can bring to life the vision of establishing a true
Finnish Center, thus preserving Saima Park as a living memorial for future
generations to enjoy. We extend our
deepest gratitude and sincere thanks for your support.
We have received letters of
encouragement and want to share a few with you.
Finnish descendant I can think of no more important project than the
preservation and perpetuation of our beloved heritage.
I support, with all my heart, the planned expansion at Saima Park".
Brian Knuuttila of the 2nd Worcester District
us in Finland all attempts to maintain and strengthen interest in Finland and
the understanding of it's multifarious culture arouse immediate attention.
This is true for all countries in which such endeavors take place.
plan of the Finnish Center at Saima Park, by means of a unified organization, to
promote appreciation of Finland's history and cultural heritage ignites special
support and every wish for the project's success."
Pertti Paasio, Helsinki
Chairman, Finland Society and
Speaker, Finnish Expatriate Parliament
my time in Fitchburg, a miniature League of Nations city, I quickly became aware
of its sizable Finnish community and the contribution that community has made to
the economic and social life of the region.
the Finnish Center at Saima Park is seeking support for the expansion it is
launching to help it continue promoting the understanding of the history and
culture of Finland. I support this project wholeheartedly."
Arthur E. Peltosalo, Vice
President (retired) General Electric Company and previously General manager, GE
Small Steam Turbine Dept., Fitchburg
All donors will be recognized in a commemorative
booklet at the dedication of the buildings.
Additionally, those who pledge $1,000 and over
will be honored on a plaque located in the library foyer. Gifts over $10,000 will allow the donor to name a door as
they choose. The naming of
a building wing is reserved for those donations of $50,000 and greater.
Please note that this is a pledge outreach and
no money should be sent at this time.
You will be notified by mail when it is time to submit the amount
you have pledged. We cannot
thank you enough for your dedication to the expansion project.
The Finnish Center at Saima
67 Scott Road, Fitchburg. MA 01420