Wife carrying – Unusual Maine Vacation Experience

Bored with vacation choices in Maine? Think you have seen it all? Well, have I got a new thing to add to YOUR list! It is the impossible to pronouce –


Also called…


Or in English


**Amazing photos of the contest from Sunday River!

wife carrying race photo from Sunday River, www.theeducationaltourist.com

Wife Carrying – What is that?

The wife carrying race held in Maine, through water and sand,  includes a man carrying his wife through an obstacle course and is taken very seriously by some! When there is serious competition, there are rules.

The International Wife Carrying Competition Rules Committee partial rule list – 

*The wife to be carried may be your own, your neighbor’s, or you may have found her……further afield. This rule is necessary. One world record holder, Margo Uusorg from Estonia, has won 5 years and has carried 3 different ‘wives’.

*Minimum weight of wife is 108 pounds and she must be over 17 years of age.

*All contestants must enjoy themselves.

**As crazy as this event sounds…it is NOT a joke! This is the real deal – who could make this up? LOL! ***

Wife Carrying – How do you carry?

You can carry the wife any way you like –piggy back, over the threshold, or fireman’s carry

man carrying woman, Photo from Sunday River, www.theeducationaltourist.com

but the Estonia Method is the most popular. The helmet wearing wife, hands on the man’s back upside down – her hands around his waist and her legs around his neck.

man carrying woman through water, wife carrying photo from Sunday River, www.theeducationaltourist.com

Holding your breath might be a great thing to train if you are the wife. Is her head underwater?
wife carried through water by man, wife carrying photo from Sunday River, www.theeducationaltourist.com

Wife Carrying – How did it start?

Well, once upon a time in Finland there was a robber named Herkko Rosvo-Ronkainen otherwise known as ‘ Ronkainen the Robber’.  He lived with a gang of thieves in the forest and they went from village to village pillaging. He was a pretty popular gang lord and thieves auditioned to join the gang by running a difficult obstacle course carrying a woman or heavy sack.

Though wives aren’t actually stolen anymore, apparently people think lugging them around is still a fun way to have a race!

Wife Carrying – Prizes!

Why carry a wife? For the prizes of course!

Winner’s earn

*crazy fun (costumes are encouraged)

*the wife’s weight in beer

*5 times the wife’s weight in cash

*entry into the World Championship in Finland

Not just for the young, but also for the young at heart! There is a category called “Combined Age over 80” in which the ages of the runner and the wife must add up to 80. Age is just a number, right?

So if you are looking for something new to do on vacation head to Maine for the Saturday, October 7, 2017 contest.

Wife Carrying – Maine has more to offer than obscure sporting events!

Check out the spectacular fall foliage.

colorful fall foliage, Wife Carrying, www.theeducationaltourist.com


Quaint covered bridges are something else Maine offers!


Don’t forget to eat while you are there. A Maine lobster is a must!

Maine Lobster - Wife Carrying, www.theeducationaltourist.com

The Educational Tourist can plan the vacation – unusual or otherwise – of your dreams! Call now!

The Educational Tourist, wife carrying, www.theeducationaltourist.com

Don’t forget the eBooks for the kids! Informative, educational, and FUN! Let me know if you don’t see your destination!

Happy and unusual travels,

Natalie, The Educational Tourist


4 Responses

  1. Sarah says:

    That’s great..they show this on the news but I didn’t know the background.

  2. Riely says:

    Wife Carrying is an interesting event, of which I have never heard of till now. An interesting backstory to this contest in Maine. I am glad wives aren’t kidnapped anymore for the event.

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