The exhibition was organized as a national exhibition with international participation May 30th-June 1st 1997 in the sports arena of Kalmar.  The facilities proved to be very convenient for this purpose.  Philatelists from all countries facing the Baltic Sea and Iceland and Norway were invited to participate.  Compared to today in a normal national exhibition, the number of classes was limited to Traditional Philately, Postal History, Postal Stationeries, Aero Philately, Thematic Philately, Youth Philately and Open Philately. 

Each participating country had, initially, 50 frames at disposal. Special regulations for the exhibition were decided more than a year before the exhibition together with general regulations for future Mare Balticum exhibitions. The idea was to have one Mare Balticum exhibition every second year.

KALMAR Mare Balticum 1997 logo
Estonian Post cancellation for Mare Balticum 1997
Commissioners medal

109 exhibits, int total 888 frames, were displayed in Kalmar. Open Philately was the dominating exhibition class with 33 exhibits. The second largest class was Postal History with 28 exhibits. Among the exhibitors you could find well known philatelists as Jussi Tuori, Erik Sjögren, Oddvar Melsaeter, Gert Fredriksson, Anders Pleijel, Kalev Kokk, Vambola Hurt and many others. Anders Pleijel was awarded Grand Prix for his outstanding exhibit about the Postal History of Öland.
The jury, with Bengt Bengtsson as president, had the pleasure to award 6 Gold Medals, 9 Large Vermeil Medals, 20 Vermeil Medals and additionally 73 other medals to the exhibitors. The jurors came from Sweden, Denmark, Estonia, Finland and Germany.
10 national postal organizations and 8 stamp dealers added value to the exhibition as well as a comprehensive program with a lot of activities. The exhibition committee, chaired by Mats Gustafsson got a lot of credit for this event.

by Mats Söderberg
Commissioner for Sweden to Mare Balticum 2024