Norway is proud to return to the Sasktel Sports Centre in 2016!
Our organization, the Saskatoon Norwegian Cultural Society Inc. has been involved in 34 Folkfest’s, including the very first one! It was held at the new Saskatoon Field House, shared with the Italian pavilion in 1981.
The Saskatoon Norwegian Cultural Society was formed in 1980. The programs of our society includes opportunities in Norwegian language, literature, history, music and song, arts and crafts. Our yearlong activity, Norsk Schol (Norwegian Language School) and Norwegian Folk dancing classes are held on Monday evenings at Aden Bowman Collegiate for children and adults. The SNCS is affiliated with the Saskatoon Multicultural Council and the Saskatchewan Heritage Language Association. Our SNCS members, along with the local Sons of Norway and the Saskatoon Scandinavian Club, volunteer each year to welcome you to the enchanting frozen land of Trolls, Vikings, Lefse, Lutefisk, Greig, Fjords and the Midnight Sun – it’s Norway!
Over these many years we have celebrated our Scandinavian heritage and culture with you. From our beginnings at elementary gyms, we have moved to Marion Graham, to the arena at Prairieland Park, to Holy Cross, St. Joseph High School and now to the spacious Sasktel Sports Centre.
We have produced musicals and dramas including “theme” years like the acclaimed Norwegian Wedding, the Opening of the Lillehammer Olympics, Life on the Saeter Mountain, Christmas in Norway, St. Lucia, May 17th Constitution day, etc.
Every year we have transformed gymnasiums and arenas into beautiful venues to display our heritage… from the Oslo Place, to Bergen fishing waterfronts, to a mountain with skiing, a stav church, life on the Saeter Mountain, troll walks, Viking encampments and raids, winter wonderlands, etc. Our pavilion too, works hard to bring in skilled artisans and craft displayers – rosemaling, hardanger, woodcarving, the Norwegian “bunad” doll collection, etc. For the first time this year we have entertainment directly from Norway!
Each year our volunteers have made potatoe Lefse and ethnic baking and desserts like Romagout, Krumkaka, Rosettes, etc. We proudly demonstrate how to make these treats! Our Norwegian kitchen is well known for our open-faced sandwiches, goat cheese, pickled herring and Swedish meatballs! We feature Norwegian and Danish beers and the special cocktail – Thor’s Hammer in our bar.
Our participation in Folkfest has enabled us to fund and operate the language school with dedicated teachers, dress our dance troops in beautiful ethnic “bunad” costumes and operate the Norway store at Folkfest. Each year we sponsor a scholarship (for our members) to study in Norway and we have taken our entire children’s folkdance troop to the NordicFest in Decorah, Iowa and to HostFest in Minot, ND. We annually host Scandinavian folkdance workshops, cultural weekends, rosemaling (folk art) classes and have a woodcarving guild for members and the Saskatoon community. Two of our members have been Folkfest Inc. Honorary Ambassadors – Marie Hartz and the late Bjorn Tokle – both of whom we are very proud of!
Today, The Saskatoon Norwegian Cultural Society (SNCS) has approximately 100 families. In 1980, there were 70 charter members! However, there are many more who volunteer each year to make the Norway Pavilion a favorite! We encourage Saskatoon residents with proud Norwegian roots or anyone with an interest in Scandinavian culture, to join the society and continue this cultural legacy. Become a Troll, a Viking, a graceful Folkdancer (in ethnic costume) or a Norsk Schol student – all year long! Check our website. SNCS President is Lori Morris.
Lastly, Norway celebrated its 200th Birthday, May 17, 2014….and as recently as Tuesday, May 17, 2016.
There are approximately 6,000 patrons through this pavilion over 3 days.