Finnish Saunas


By Erika Janik | February 15, 2011

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What could possibly make hundreds, maybe thousands, of Wisconsin residents jump naked into freezing lakes? It’s called a Finnish sauna.

Commentator Arnold Alanen says it’s part of our state’s heritage.

Arnold Alanen is an emeritus professor of landscape architecture at the University of Wisconsin. He recently wrote the introduction to a new book called “The Opposite of Cold: The Northwoods Finnish Sauna Tradition.”

Erika Janik

Erika Janik spins multiple “Wisconsin Life”-related plates as she acquires, edits, records, and mixes radio stories for broadcast — all while searching for new roadside attractions, hiking trails  and local beer to explore.  She is the author of five books including “Apple: A Global History“, and most recently “Marketplace of the Marvelous:...
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