Heikki Lunta is alive and well in 2018

Some very old Old Timers have declared that once upon a time, maybe in the ’40s, there was a winter in which thick ice and heavy snow did not appear until close to Christmas; but as Old Timers know, Old Timers’ memories are woefully inadequate.
We had an early start with snow on the ground through deer season but a couple warm days knocked that back and now we have just enough snow for a White Christmas.
Which is probably why there’s been some consternation among members of the Ely Nordic Association, the local organization dedicated to cross country skiing, not to mention the snowmobilers and ice anglers, and those persons engaged in the winter recreation industry - resorts, motels, dog mushers, guides, clothing stores, sport shops, live bait dealers, restaurants, gas stations - who have all been looking at the lack of snow with growing apprehension.
In previous years, when snowfall was less than adequate, the community has appealed to the Finnish patron saint of winter, Heikki Lunta...whose name translates as “Hank Snow.”
Mr. Lunta, we were informed by snow country authorities such as skier Roger Pekuri, has the ability to turn on the snow when appealed to. There is even a tune about Heikki Lunta which has been featured on radio station WELY.
We’re not snowless, but there was a fear that perhaps something has gone wrong. The funny thing is it was 20 years ago that this same situation occurred.
Back then we found that yes, indeed, the Heikki Lunta song had been played on the radio. Prayers had been said to seek assistance from Mr. Lunta. Yet naught had occurred. Well, very little.
Twenty years and one month ago there were two feet of snow and skiers were plying their sport on the golf links. But that all vanished in a burst of spring-like temperatures, warm rain and other impediments.
Also true, there are some misguided folk who smiled during the warm weather, who gleefully related how nice it was not to shovel sidewalks and bundle up in parkas and mukluks. These unfortunate individuals we charitably tolerated and they certainly received our pity. But Ely is no place for non-winterers.
A good number of our citizens who favor warmth have already left for California, Arizona, Florida, Texas and points south. Those of us who remain here are largely winter folk.
There was an unfounded rumor that the aforementioned Heikki Lunta might have passed on to his reward. If such had been the case, we would have printed the obituary. No such notice bearing the name Lunta appeared in our editorial office.
In any event, his abilities are needed here and now. The senior Mr. Lunta has been the key to the snowfall in the past but perhaps his winter making days are behind him.
We had already moved to a backup plan to seek the assistance of Heikki Lunta Jr., who, we have been told, is rapidly approaching the legal age for smoking, drinking and snow making. In the absence of his father or inability to perform his given assignments, perhaps, we feel, the younger man could be persuaded to deliver some snow. Heikki Jr. should be instructed that he need not bury us. Just a couple of feet of snow would be adequate.
After all, as we are taught at Christmas, “it is better to give than to receive.” So to the Lunta family we say, please give us some snow and cover our septic fields so we don’t have a brown Christmas.
After all, this coming Tuesday is Christmas. For the sake of all the kids, it would be nice to know that Santa can put away his wheel rig and go with his sleigh.