A New Century A New Center

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 tone.

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 reality.

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.

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We have received letters of encouragement and want to share a few with you.

"Being a 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".

Representative Brian Knuuttila of the 2nd Worcester District


"To 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.

The 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


"During 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.

Now 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

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Honoraria Levels

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 fundraising committee.


E-mail: expansion@saima-park.org

The Finnish Center at Saima Park
67 Scott Road, Fitchburg. MA 01420






All material on this site, unless otherwise noted, is The Finnish Center at Saima Park, Inc., 2001-2005.  All rights reserved.
This page was last updated on: 10/23/17

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