Playing Dirty In Ísafjörður

Playing Dirty In Ísafjörður

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Photos by
Alfrún Gísladóttir

Mýrarbolti (Mee-rar-bowl-ti) is the European championship in Swamp Football (or soccer). It has taken place in the small town of Ísafjörður in the Westfjords of Iceland since 2005. During the bash, the town gets dubbed Íbizafjörður, as it’s the biggest party weekend of the year. Last year, the winners were even accused of not being drunk, hung-over or tired in the annual accusations, which take place during the closing ceremony.

This year an estimated 1.200 people (including a Grapevine spy) participated in the competition with a record number of women taking part. Native Ísafjörður girls, the Pamelas of Team Hasselhoff, took both overall and women’s titles while Bert and the He-man Hunters won it for the guys division, taking the title from local champions Aðskilnaðarsamtök Vestfjarða (“The Westfjords Secession Organisation”).

With nipple twisting, hair pulling and even groin grabbing, the Mýrarbolti women’s division is not for princesses—at least not the boring ones. And winners Team Hasselhoff certainly didn’t hold back, getting their fair share of black cards (punishable by two minutes with a black sack over the head). Of course I would have liked to win, but it was also nice to let the mud dry and drink the rest of my beer. Wonderful weather, crazy nightlife and competitive sport—this is what three-day weekends are made for.


Overall and women’s division: Team Hasselhoff

Men’s division: Bert and the He-man Hunters


Yellow card: for mild infractions, you get a verbal warning

Pink card: for mildly hurting another player, you must kiss their boo-boo

Black card: for something mildly worse, you must put a black sack, which is usually wet and muddy, over your head for two minutes