In the framework of the »forces of light« festival a public building was erected for the purpose of observing polar lights. The location of the temporary hut was in close proximity to the old observatory of Helsinki University, which is not open to the public.
For the interested visitor, the »Public Polar Light Observatory« offered favourable conditions for observing the night sky: strong heating systems; facilities for making tea and coffee and large supplies of cookies. The illumination of the surrounding park was turned off during the project period.
The winter 1999/2000 fell on a maximum of the 11 year sun spot cycle, indicating a com- parable high auroral activity including extremly intense polar lights which are able to compete with the severe light pollution of Helsinki.
(collaboration with Frank Luesing)