DC's Hottest Club: Finnish Sauna Society
Where bipartisan networking is nude and sweaty
By Jane Yager,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 18, 2010 10:09 AM CDT
A Finnish sauna.   (Shutter Stock)

(Newser) – The hottest secret society in Washington is the Diplomatic Finnish Sauna Society, a group of DC operatives who gather to sweat in the 190-degree heat of the traditional Finnish sauna at said country's Embassy. For the society's 150 sauna-goers—Capitol Hill staffers, lobbyists, White House officials, and journalists—sauna networking is "a great 'I scratch your back, you scratch mine' sort of thing," said Kari Mokko, the Finnish Embassy staffer who founded the tradition.

Mokko told the Washington Post he started the society to raise Finland's low profile. The guest list is harmoniously bipartisan: "You don't wear your politics on your sleeve when you are not wearing sleeves," one Republican member said. "Mostly you just talk about how damn hot it is." Mokko concurred: "I've never seen a person exit the sauna angry."