Iceland's Independence Day In The Time Of Coronavirus

Iceland’s Independence Day In The Time Of Coronavirus

Published June 12, 2020

Photo by
biologyfishman/Wikimedia Commons

June 17th is Iceland’s Independence Day, and is one of the biggest celebrations in the country. This year, on account of the coronavirus, things are going to be a little bit different, Vísir reports.

Reykjavík residents are encouraged to adorn their yards and windows with the Icelandic flag, and then to travel around town and play a game called “Count The Flags”. The object is to count as many flags in town as you can, and then send your final result to 17juni@reykjavik.is. Winners could receive a gift bag from Reykjavík Museum Stores, a gift certificate for the Reykjavík Zoo, a Reykjavík Culture Card and tickets to Fly Over Iceland.

Meanwhile, the traditional assemblage at Austurvöllur, the square in front of Parliament, will go forward in the morning. Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir will address the nation, and then the “Lady of the Mountain” will recite a poem written specifically for the occasion. Students will lay wreaths of flowers at the foot of the statue of Jón Sigurðsson at Austurvöllur and the state of Ingibjörg Einarsdóttir at Hólavallakirkjugarður, and President Guðni Th. Jóhannesson will deliver a speech under the watchful eye of the scouts.

A marching band will perform downtown from 13:00 to 18:00, while choirs, artist groups, and the Street Theatre will perform surprise events. Most of all, people are encouraged to keep their focus on celebrating Iceland’s independence at home with their families and close friends.

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