Joensuu City Center Development Association

City Centre Awards 2015

Terttu Hurri

This year we will give awards to people who are crafty with their hands and taste sensation makers! It is time to honour the Karelian pasties, cakes, pies, bagels, and street food.

For years, the concept of the Joensuu market square was not complete without a certain well-known Karelian pasty stall. Hurri’s stall was one of many but the pasties she sold were a phenomenon of its time. Having baked the pasties early in the morning, Terttu would then sell them at the Joensuu market square. The flow of customers was never-ending and it was as if the stall had always been there.

Besides baking and selling Karelian pasties, Terttu Hurri has always been involved in many activities and jobs. Joensuu and especially its city centre have been important! Terttu has acted as a chairperson, a vice chairperson, a secretary and a treasurer of the Entrepreneur Women of Joensuu. In her time she was elected as the Secretary of the Year and previous to that, the Friend Woman of the Year. Nowadays, despite the limitations to her mobility, she has not become less active in her everyday life. At the moment, Terttu works as an instructor for the Pensioners Association’s club activities, instructing people on handcrafts and knitted cards. The work of the gardening society is also very close to her heart and neighbours are familiar with her perennial flowerbeds.

In addition to the previously mentioned achievements, Terttu Hurri is also awarded for her long project of keeping a scrapbook about the development of the city centre of Joensuu. It is a subject that has been discussed in the media and especially the press for years. The pedestrian city centre has been a disputed hot topic issue with its development and implementation. In order to preserve these fleeting snapshots of the past, Terttu Hurri decided to keep a regular scrapbook. She has been compiling the scrapbook since the beginning of the pedestrian city centre, when she also became a member of the steering committee for the pedestrian city centre development.

At the moment she is compiling her third thick scrapbook. These scrapbooks will serve as an interesting glimpse into the past for the future generations. The collection reflects the significant and wide discussion concerning the city centre: decision-making, plans, opinion pieces and perspectives. These clippings build a picture of the developing and changing city image of Joensuu, the inception of the pedestrian street and its extensive changes – and this is all just from the first decade of the pedestrian city centre. There is no end in sight: the river in the middle of the city, a symmetrical Joensuu, the market square parking lot, the expansion of the pedestrian city centre etc. etc. Hopefully the scrapbooks will find their place at the reading room of the city library.

A big thank you to Terttu for her personal contribution and taking part in the development of the Joensuu city centre.

Heartfelt congratulations to the all-round virtuoso, Terttu Hurri.

Award 1 in 2015

Pirkko Burman and Jari Puruskainen

Our next two award winners have also put in motion many services that have had a direct impact on the city centre, both in Joensuu and in Kuopio. They now own five businesses: Houkutus cafés in Joensuu and in Kuopio, Hyve&Pahe and Vesikioski in Joensuu and Salacavala in the Kuopio market square.

Now known even outside Joensuu, the unique café services of Houkutus are a significant and laudable addition to the city of Joensuu. Friendship and entrepreneurial can-do attitude are what make Jari and Pirkko great working partners. Even the name “Houkutus” (“temptation”) is tempting, and a fitting description of the synthesis of courageous and hardworking professionalism.

Everyone knows Pirkko Burman for her innovative nature, creativity and especially for her courage to take on challenges. Her focused and warm attitude towards developing new ideas is not only charming but also very efficient and productive. The strengths of Jari Puruskainen lie in organizing and putting ideas into practice. The skills of a baker and mastering all things economic are essential in the everyday life of a café entrepreneur. He’s not only good with his hands but he also thinks quickly on his feet which are indispensable skills for any profession.

Joensuu is the home city for both of them and that is why working and servicing customers here is an especially pleasant task that is close to their hearts.

They have played their part in building a diverse café culture in Joensuu. The people of Joensuu had their first taste of specialty coffees at Houkutus: first at the railway station and later in the city centre and pedestrian street. Inspired by this, coffee weeks were celebrated for several years in the pedestrian street.

Pirkko and Jari open-minded in their approach and have visions for the future. The ability to see the big picture has given them an advantage in creating a new culture of taste, and also to concretely bring this vision for the eastern Finns to enjoy, both in Kuopio and in Joensuu.

The visibility and especially the deliciousness of the businesses have already made it possible to employ 60 people and serve thousands of happy customers. The new Vesikioski on the central plaza is yet another encouraging stride for the development of the pedestrian city centre. Situated in the historically important central axel of Joensuu, Vesikioski is at home; it’s almost as if it has found its historical spot.

Pirkko and Jari have also found their own historical places, deep in the heart of café culture in Joensuu, in the pedestrian city centre, in River City! There is no doubt that the receivers of this award are productive, open-minded and philanthropic professionals in the bakery industry in Joensuu!

It’s a joy to give the 2015 City Centre Award to this courageous entrepreneurial twosome! Congratulations to Pirkko Burman and Jari Puruskainen!

Award 2 in 2015

Images from the prize ceremony