The 100th anniversary of Finland’s constitutional democracy celebrated with numerous events and open houses

Government Communications Department 2.9.2019 11.57 | Published in English on 2.9.2019 at 14.35
Press release

This year we celebrate the 100th anniversary of Finland’s constitutional democracy. The Constitution Act adopted in 1919 laid the foundation for democracy in Finland, and is a key element of the early stages of our independence. The 100th anniversary has been celebrated in various ways during the year, and the festivities will now culminate in mid-September.

The Constitution Act adopted 100 years ago, together with the Parliament Act, Election Act and Municipal Election Act adopted earlier, have guided the work to build Finland into a modern rule of law state. During the second week of September, the anniversary will be celebrated with various kinds of events and open houses at government buildings.

100th anniversary of Finland's constitutional democracy celebrations at Parliament

The event to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Finland's constitutional democracy will be held at the Plenary Hall of the Parliament Building on Tuesday 10 September 2019 at 12.00. Speakers at the event are the President of the Republic Sauli Niinistö, Speaker of Parliament Matti Vanhanen and Prime Minister Antti Rinne. The event will be broadcast on TV by Yle.

Open houses

The 100th anniversary of Finland’s constitutional democracy will be celebrated by open houses at the Presidential Palace, Parliament Building, Government Palace and House of the Estates on 12–14 September 2019. The public may visit the main government buildings as follows:

  • Presidential Palace Thursday–Saturday 12–14 September at 10.00–15.00
  • Parliament Building Friday 13 September at 14.00–19.00
  • Government Palace and House of the Estates on Saturday 14 September at 10–15.

Prime Minister Rinne will also be present at the Government Palace for part of the day to meet the public.

On Saturday 14 May coffee will be served at an open day event at Helsinki Market Square at 10–15. While drinking your coffee, you can enjoy musical performances and listen to speeches and discussions relating to the 100th anniversary theme. The speakers and panellists include historians, MPs and ministers. A more detailed programme of the event is available at the Prime Minister’s Office website and at the coffee tent at the Market Square.

Other anniversary events

Tuesday 10 September

The opening of the 100th Anniversary of Finland’s Constitutional Democracy exhibition at the National Archives, presenting the evolvement of our nation and of the institution of the Presidency of the Republic with documents, objects and photographs. On Friday 13 and Saturday 14 September, Professor Emeritus Timo Soikkanen and Professor Vesa Vares who put the exhibition together will be present to tell about their work. On both these days, the exhibition will be open at 9.00–16.00.

Friday 13 September

100th Anniversary of Finland’s Constitutional Democracy Jubilee Seminar at the House of the Estates at 9.30–12.00. The seminar will be broadcast live at vn.fi/live.
Constitution Day for Pupils at the House of the Estates at 12.45–15.30. More than 250 ninth graders from different parts of Finland will participate in the educational programme.

Sunday 15 September

During the Day to Celebrate the President of the Republic of Finland of the National Museum of Finland at 10.00–18.00, we will first spend the morning on guided walking tours following the footsteps of our presidents. The tours start at Tokoinranta, Senate Square, House of Nobility or Tavastia, and end at the National Museum. In the afternoon there will be brief presentations by experts at the Auditorium at 13.00–17.00. The number of participants in the walking tours is limited, so please register in advance.

More information on open house sites and visiting them

Presidential Palace

The Presidential Palace was completed in 1820 as a storehouse, originally designed by Pehr Granstedt. Between 1840 and 1845 it was converted into an Imperial Palace, with the work partly directed by architect Carl Ludvig Engel. It has been in its current use since 1921. The Presidential Palace now houses the Office of the President of the Republic and the premises used by the President for official functions and receptions.

Read more about open house at the Presidential Palace

Parliament Building

The Parliament Building designed by architect Johan Sigfrid Sirén in the Neoclassical style of the 1920s was completed at Arkadianmäki (Arcadia Hill) in 1931. Constructed as a monument of independence and democracy, it combines architectural elements, crafts and design and visual arts into a whole that is still dictated by architecture.

Open house at the Parliament Building on Friday 13 September 2019: Visitors’ entrance opens at 14.00 and closes at 18.15. There may be a queue at the entrance. The public must leave by 19.00.

The public may visit the building and learn about Parliaments work at their own pace, guided by the staff. The building is fully accessible. At the ‘Political Marketplace’ the visitors will meet MPs and hear about the work done in parliamentary groups. Coffee will be served to the visitors at the Parliament’s cafeteria.

Read more about open house at the Parliament Building (in Finnish)

Government Palace

The tour takes as to the historical atmosphere of the building designed by architect Carl Ludwig Engel. Along the way we can see the second-floor landing of the main staircase where Eugen Schauman fired the fatal bullets at Governor-General Nikolai Bobrikov in 1904. The public may also visit the Government Session Hall and the Presidential Room.

House of the Estates

The House of the Estates designed by architect Karl Gustaf Nyström in the Neo-Renaissance style was built in 1888–1890. The dignified building now serves as the venue for meetings, official functions and festivities of the Government and its ministries, with hundreds of events held there every year.

Read more about open house at the Government Palace and House of the Estates

Inquiries:

Prime Minister's Office

Tiina-Kaisa Laakso-Liukkonen, Production Manager
tel. +358 29 516 0220, [email protected]
Aapo Riihimäki, Communications Specialist
tel. +358 50 471 3020, [email protected]

Office of the President of the Republic

Matti Porre, Press Officer,
tel. +358 0 515 2800, [email protected]

Communications at Parliament

Rainer Hindsberg, Deputy Head of Information
tel. +358 50 549 0436