Stockholm and Gothenburg may be the bookies’ favourites to host Eurovision 2016, but Sveriges Radio reports that officials in Örnsköldsvik have entered a host city bid anyway. In case you aren’t familiar with this city of pulp mills and ethanol products, wiwibloggs is here to help. Its Fjällräven Center (formerly Swedbank Arena) can hold 9,800 people for concerts, and it hosted both the third semi final of Melodifestivalen 2007 and the 2008 European Curling championships. Par-tay! So put your prejudices to the side and let’s explore why Örnsköldsvik is a wildcard worthy of your consideration.
1. Because Örnsköldsvik is super hard for non-Swedes to pronounce, which will lead to moments of great comedy as the commentators try to say it right. Julia Zamiro will be the only one to succeed.
2. Because f*ck hotels: Maria will let five people stay in her house for 89 euros a night!
3. Museums? We don’t need no stinking museums. This map of Örnsköldsvik attractions features a water park. Only a water park. And it’s named PARADISE!
4. It’s the birthplace of Hans Hedberg, a sculpter known for his ceramic fruit.
…which was very large.
5. It’s also the birthplace of several famous hockey players like Markus Nasland…
…and Victor Hedman
6. Because Eurovision 2015 winner Måns Zelmerlöw has endorsed Örnsköldsvik as the host city, according to the city’s Eurovision ambassador Peter Forsberg.
8. Because it hosted the first semi final of Melodifestivalen 2010, which gave us Salem Al Fakir, who almost beat Anna Bergendahl in the final.
9. Because the Fjällräven Center welcomes ladies who lunch…while watching hockey. A recent lunch menu included fish with tarragon and jelly pancakes with bacon and lingonberries. Mmmm.
10. Because the Fjällräven Center is home to Örnsköldsvik’s MODO hockey team, and maybe they’ll linger around the locker room during Eurovision!
So should SVT showcase a new part of Sweden? Is Örnsköldsvik in it with a chance?