Janne Käpylehto built once again the world' s largest ice carousel
Janne Käpylehto has already built 60 ice carousels. Now he did it again: On the Finnish lake Lappajärvi he made the world's largest ice carousel spin. A Kirami hot tub was part of it. Read on the blog about the challenges the inventor had to face and how he still managed to set the world record.
The good news spread around the globe via the media. Articles about Janne Käpylehto's latest coup were published in 50 different countries. Among those on the scene were journalists producing a documentary for the BBC and german channel NDR, and a representative of the world's oldest news agency, AFP. So the determined work was also rewarded in the form of visibility. But what exactly was the project about?
- We are talking here about a total of one year project. In Lappajärvi, I spent 8 nights myself. I worked about 13, 14 hours every day and slept 4 hours at night. Fortunately, about 100 volunteers helped me, and they were all full of enthusiasm. A funny story comes to my mind. One guy, who had already helped us on several days, went home on Sunday night and threw his wet rubber boots into the corner, cursing. He told his wife that it was really enough now and he was not going out on that ice anymore. The next morning at 7:30 he put his boots back on and his wife asked him where he was going. "Well, out there on the ice, we have to get this thing spinning somehow" was the reply. Such a great spirit we had there, Janne laughs.
This story already gives an idea that it was a long and winding road to the world record and that not everything immediately worked out as the inventor had originally planned.
- The carousel was supposed to start spinning on Saturday. Well, in the end it took until Monday, because we were confronted with some challenges. The biggest challenge was the snow. We had to get it off the ice disk somehow, and because the snow was so heavy, we had to spend most of the time standing in 15 centimeters of water doing the sawing, explains Kirami's longtime partner.
"I lost my faith for maybe a second"
Beeing confronted with the problems, did Janne ever lose his faith to set the world record?
- Well, maybe for a second. But from the moment the carousel moved for the first time, I knew it would work. It was just a matter of time and we just had to continue our work. And in the end it did work, just a few days later, the inventor summarizes happily.
The giant ice carousel, with a diameter of 310.78 meters, actually made three complete rotations on the crater lake of Lappajärvi. The official record requires the carousel to make one complete rotation without stopping. This must be documented accordingly. The surface of the ice carousel was more than 75,000 square meters. The previous record holder, the US American Chuck Zwilling, had built an ice carousel with a diameter of 228 meters.
Excellent cooperation with the mayors
So why did Janne Käpylehto build his ice carousel in Lappajärvi?
- I built my first carousel in Lohja in 2017, then there was the 2018 Ice Carousel Festival also in Lohja - with about 20000 visitors. In 2020, I had to make a carousel out of pontoons at the Ice Carousel Festival because there was no ice! So I studied Finland's map and Lappajärvi came to my mind, a place I had already visited. I called Sami Alasara, the mayor of Lappajärvi, and the very next day we had a meeting with three mayors. Vimpeli and Alajärvi also came on board. We got some sponsors from the region and also a lot of volunteers, Janne explains.
A Kirami hot tub spun on the small carousel
Not only was the world record carousel spinning on Lake Lappajärvi, but there was also a smaller ice carousel with a sauna and a Kirami hot tub among other things.
- It was the Original model and guess what was the very first thing we had to do when we arrived on site. We immediately set up the hot tub, and I found myself relaxing there several times during the week.
With the help of a pump, Janne and his mates filled the hot tub with lake water.
- Here the funny episode happened that some local volunteers helped me to bring the hot tub to the ice surface and set it up there. At the beginning it seemed to me as if they were thinking about what they were actually doing. But then they were totally enthusiastic about the whole thing after we started using the hot tub, Janne smiles.
A Kirami hot tub can also be found in Janne Käpylehto's garden in Käpylä, a district of Helsinki. The inventor uses it very often. Even in the winter time, he enjoys bathing in the tub. In summer, he relaxes in the water of the hot tub up to three times a week.
Next year an even bigger ice carousel
Janne will not celebrate his world record for long, because he already has new plans.
- Next year we will build an even bigger ice carousel on Lake Lappajärvi, the diameter will be 1 kilometer, he reveals.
- It will be an incredible amount of sawing. But we won't be doing it with chainsaws then; stronger and more robust machines are already in the making. The carousel will spin in a place where the territories of Lappajärvi, Alajärvi and Vimpeli meet. So we will "connect" the three places in a whole new way.
If everything works out as Janne would like it to, the event will turn into a large public festival. There will be restaurants spinning on the carousel and even several hot tubs. As early as this April, Janne Käpylehto wants to sail across the lake on a boat made of ice - from Lappajärvi to Alajärvi. "Let's see which mayors dare to go along," Janne grins.
- There will be tables on the boat, a barbecue and maybe even a tent sauna. I'm curious to see how far we'll get with that, Janne smiles. In any case, the inventor wants to attach small pontoons to the "furnishings" and the outboard motor so that it will be easier to collect the things again when the "boat" has melted away under them.
Video from Lappajärvi
- Crater lake Ice Carousel - world's largest 310 meters / +1000 feet
Video from Käpylä
- From Janne's home where is a Kirami´s Steady Hot Tub