Playgrounds offering familiar casserole and soup dishes this summer

Helsinki’s playgrounds will start providing summer meals on 5 June. The free-of-charge hot meals are available to everyone under the age of 16. The summer menu features familiar and well-liked casserole and soup dishes, and on Helsinki Day 12 June there will also be dessert available in the form of rhubarb pie.
Lapsi nauttimassa puistoruokaa leikkipuistossa
Photo: Sirpa Päivinen

Summer meals are provided every weekday at 12:00 at all open playgrounds during the period of 5 June–4 August. The number of summer meals served per day is approximately 3,000.
This summer, Helsinki’s playgrounds will once again be offering soup and casserole dishes suitable for heated transportation. Based on the feedback, vegetarian dishes have also been added to the menu.

“We have updated the summer meal menu based on feedback. Familiar favourites, such as rainbow trout soup and Italian casserole, are still included, of course. We have also added vegetarian days to the menu, on which the available dishes include the popular pureed vegetable soup and vegetable risotto, for example,” says Food Services Specialist Sirpa Jalovaara from the Education Division.

In addition, on Monday 12 June, playgrounds will also be serving dessert in the form of rhubarb pie to commemorate Helsinki Day. “Rhubarb pie is the traditional Helsinki Day treat. This year, Helsinki Day falls on a weekday, as a result of which we can once again serve it at playgrounds as well,” rejoices Susanna Immonen from Palvelukeskus Helsinki, who designs the menus.

All you need to take part in the free-of-charge summer meals is your own tableware: a plate, a spoon and a mug. There is also water available to drink at playgrounds. The summer meals can also be supplemented with a sandwich brought from home, for example.

This summer marks the 81st time that summer meals are being organised at Helsinki’s playgrounds. The practice dates back to the Second World War, when the aim was to provide children with at least one warm meal a day. The service remains widely appreciated by families in Helsinki to this day, offering relief to homes during the summer holiday period of schools.