StÜnga Games

StÜnga Games

Four days including second weekend of July
The Stînga Games, often referred to as the "Gotlandic Olympics," have been held on Gotland Island in the Baltic Sea since 1924. They are the Swedish equivalent of Scotland's Braemar Highland Gathering, with competitive games and sports played the way they were in Viking times (late 700s to 1100 c.e.). Ancient square-and-border-ball is a popular team event in which the ball is hit with the hand or kicked with the foot, and teams must try to gain as much of their opponents' ground as possible. The Gotlandic pole-throwing contest is much like "tossing the caber" in Scotland. Another game, the Stone, is similar to horseshoes. It uses two stones, one made of stone and one of metal, which the players throw with the object of landing them as near as possible to the post. In the Gotlandic pentathlon, the participants compete in five events: a run, a game similar to the Stone, a high jump, pole throwing, and Cumberland wrestling. Other games include kick astride, hook the bottom, rule the roast, tug-of-pole, and breaking the ox.
CONTACTS:
Traditional Gutnic Sports Association
Neptungatan 4
Visby, S-621 41 Sweden
46-498-207-067; fax: 46-498-215-474
SOURCES:
WildPlanet-1995, p. 104
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