Recently no less than three Lunch Beat branches has been established in the Finnish cities Helsinki, Tampere and Jyväskylä.
I’ve got a hold on Simo who is taking the Helsinki initiative – a researcher and writer by profession and a dancer and city-lover by hobby. He works at Demos Helsinki, an independent think-and-do-tank focusing on sustainable lifestyles, participation, well-being, and better urban futures.
You say it was quite simple to take the initiative – how come?
Yes, it was super easy! There’s so many spaces in every city, just take your pick. I chose my own office for the first one, so I only had to convince my co-workers. Luckily they’re always up for anything. I asked around for DJ’s and my friend Tommi Partanen a.k.a. DJ Ais-T from the urban media house Basso instantly said Yes. A live set requires good equipment; we rented those with a good deal.
How where you solving the food challenge?
It’s lunchtime so food is obviously super important, and also a good way to give a statement. Lunch Beat Helsinki focuses on climate-friendly food – meaning seasonal ingredients, mainly vegetarian with non-cultivated, freshwater fish. Our friends at the occasional pop up restaurant Le Frogwanted to take on the challenge.
What are your best advice for other people interested in starting Lunch Beat in their cities?
If you’re thinking about it, just do it. Don’t wait for someone to do something fun in your city – it’s everyone’s responsibility and privilege. I’m also involved in Restaurant Day, where we encourage anyone to open a restaurant for a day. There’s always time for lunchtime discos and pop up restaurants, they are what good cities are made of.