Bear Festival

Programme in English

Programme for year 2019 coming later on this page

Programme in year 2018

The  fifth Bear Festival in Ilomantsi 16.-18.8.2018!

The theme of the fifth Bear Festival is Wild Nature. The 2018 Bear Festival will feature two Bear Sculpting Championship competitions.  On Thursday and Friday, 16 and 17 August, there will be a two-day competition and Saturday, 18 August, there will be an speed sculpting competition. The two-day competition is held at the center of Ilomantsi and speed sculpting at Katri Vala Culture Center, Katri Valantie 1. The road there is closed on Saturday, a street train is bringing people from Market place to Katri Vala and back. The Info tent across the Market place is open from 10-18 on Thursday and 9-18 on Friday, on Saturday it is the venue for award ceremonies. There you can buy Festival T-shirts and get more info about the programme.

Thursday, 16.8.2018
11:30                Opening at the Market place
12-18                Sculptors at work, Championship competition
Detailed information coming soon.

Friday, 17.8.2018

9-17                  Sculptors at work, Championship competition
17                      Family event in Piirolan piha
18                      Lectures in Parppeinvaara
20                     Bear Fires in Parppeinvaara
Detailed information coming soon!

Saturday, 18.8.2018

9.00                  Bear Arena is opening
11-13                 Speed sculpting competition
13.15-13.45      Public voting for the best works
15.00                Awards from the both sculpting competitions at the Market place
Detailed information coming soon!

Wild Food Festival
Saturday 18 August 2018

The Bear Festival visitors will also be able to enjoy offerings from the Wild Food Festival on Saturday, 18 August, organized by LAG Karelian Hills LEADER. The festival’s idea is to increase the awareness of how to use different kind of products which are growing in the nature. You can buy and taste different kinds of food made from wild food (lake fish, berries, mushrooms, wild herbs etc.) from the pop-up restaurants. There´s also a competition for the wild food cooking, and the best wild foods will be selected and awarded at the festival.

10:00 Pop up -restaurants open, welcome to do some tasty shopping!
15.00  Awards are given on the Market place of Ilomantsi
More information coming soon!


The Bear Festival is arranged by The Association for Rural Culture and Education with its regional association for Vaara-Karjala, Ilomantsi municipality and local businesses and associations. The Bear Festival is open for everyone and its happenings are free.

The Wild Food Festival is arranged by the LAG Karelian Hills LEADER.