Tapiola is a hidden gem and has been considered one of Thunder Bay’s best-kept secrets.
It’s a beautiful spot for wandering and nature walks in its enchanted forest and for great cross-country skiing in the winter. Tapiola has been owned by the Finlandia Association since the ’60s and was sold in the summer of 2020 to new owners Arlene Thorn and Joe O’Hearn. A new era of Tapiola begins with a vision of a community that will extend the use of the property as a nature/eco-centre.
Tapiola gets its name from the Finnish national epic poem called the Kalevala, which describes the enchanted realm of Tapio, the ruler of the forests. Tapiola is featured in the works of the Finnish composer Jean Sibelius. The Finnish community in Thunder Bay, who have held mid-summer festivals and winter events there for decades, were heartbroken that Tapiola would be lost to the community with the sale. It was a special moment when the new owners and individuals from the Finnish community came together to create the Tapiola Association, a not-for-profit organization, for the continuation of the ski trails, community events and further service to Tapio and the re-creative forces of nature.