Posted by: Loren Coleman on June 17th, 2006
The forthcoming Storsjoyran Great Lake Festival on July 27-29, 2006, will have the local “president” Ewert Ljusberg of Jämtland making his annual speech to the region, again marked by a new imaginative and spectacular entrance.
According to John Gammon’s June 17, 2006, Pollstar article, the idea is to top last year’s stunt:
In 1996 [Ewert Ljusberg] rode in on a seven-ton elephant, which was making a guest appearance while en route from a Spanish to a Swedish circus, but he topped that in ’99, when he tried to float down in a huge air balloon.
He missed the main 20,000-capacity square at Ostersund (where the event is traditionally held), got snaffled on a nearby building and ended up shouting his state of the union address from the rooftop.
This year, he’s planning to sail into the city across the great lake that borders it, on the back of a model of the huge monster that lives beneath its waters.
The monster in the lake, similar to the world-famous one that’s supposed to be swimming around in Loch Ness in Scotland, is the subject of remarkable tales that the locals spin for visiting tourists.
Even more remarkably, the tourists seem to swallow the stories hook, line and sinker and spend hours poised on the lake shore – camera in hand – waiting for a ripple on the surface.
(Storsie, the Swedish Lake Monster, is not to be confused with the Stronsay Beast, above, a Long-Necked Sea Monster, first sighted on September 25, 1808, lying on rocks at Rothiesholm Head, in the southeast of Orkney island.)
Well, of course, despite the tone of the news reporter, the locals, as well as the tourists, tend to have some hope in seeing Storsie, because so many have before them. As I mention in my and Patrick Huyghe’s book The Field Guide to Lake Monsters, Sea Serpents, and Other Mystery Denizens of the Deep, there’s a long serious tradition at the lake. First recorded historically as having been sighted in 1635, Storsie, the Lake Monster from Storsjo, this deep mountain lake in central Sweden, has been seen at least 150 times by 450 people. It has been a topic of scholarly and scientific interest ever since.
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013.