event Calendar

pacific northwest United States (or, wa)

    • January 23, 2021
    • 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM (PST)
    • National Nordic Museum - Seattle, WA

    VIRTUAL BOOK TALK: MEET THE AUTHOR w/INGRID WALL & JOACHIM WALL

    Join us for our next talk in our Meet the Author  series. On January 23rd, Swedish authors Ingrid Wall and Joachim Wall will discuss their book A Silenced Voice: The Life of Journalist Kim Wall (2019), a moving memoir of an inexplicable crime, a family’s loss, and a legacy preserved. The talk is moderated by Dr. Elizabeth DeNoma.

    Kim Wall was a thirty-year-old Swedish freelance journalist with a rising career. Then, in the summer of 2017, she followed a story that led to an eccentric inventor in Copenhagen. Instead of writing the next day’s headline, she’d become one.

    As the bizarre events of Kim’s murder unfolded, the world watched in shocked disbelief. For Kim’s distraught parents, Ingrid and Joachim, it was a devastating personal struggle. In the ensuing months, day by grueling day, they had to come to terms with their loss, process the global media attention, and endure the investigation and trial. In the end, they’d make certain that Kim would be seen not only as a victim but as a bright, funny, complicated, ethical, and selfless young woman—a loved and loving daughter, sister, fiancée, colleague, and friend.

    Kim Wall’s life and promise may have been cut short, but everything she stood for lives on in this emotional memoir of braving the worst of days, moving forward, and never forgetting.

    Cost: Free for Members; $5 general admission

    Register Here

    About the authors:

    Ingrid Wall is a Swedish journalist, author, and mother of journalist Kim Wall. She's worked for more than twenty-five years in the newspaper industry as general assignment reporter, news director, business reporter, and night news editor. In 2000 she was hired as head of communications at Trelleborg Municipality. She is the author of Trelleborg in the 1950s: City of My Childhood and The Beauty of Everyday Language, and coauthor with her husband, Joachim, of A Man, an Island, a Life.

    Joachim Wall is a Swedish photojournalist and father of journalist Kim Wall. At the age of fifteen, Joachim's first photograph—that of George Harrison—was published, and his career was set. After running his own picture agency, in 1985 he started working as a press photographer for the evening paper Kvällsposten in Malmö. He went on to cover events big and small, both locally and internationally, for nearly thirty years. He also coauthored a book with his wife, Ingrid, A Man, an Island, a Life.

    • January 24, 2021
    • (CST)
    • NFDA Weekly Email

    WHAT'S HAPPENING IN DANISH AMERICA? - OUR WEEKLY NEWSLETTER

    Subscribe Here for our FREE Sunday Evening E-News delivered to your email.  

    In Our E-News for January 24 -

    Here are some of the News and Events we'll be covering for the week of January 24 - 31

    Danish Home of Chicago Recognized with Prestigious Royal Grant

    US Ambassador to Denmark Carla Sands says Farewell

    The Copenhagen Trilogy by Tove Ditlevsen - presented by the American Scandinavian Association - New York on January 26

    Live From Denmark - Photo Tour with Benedikte Ehlers OlesenChristiansfeld, Åbenrå, Dybbøl, Sønderborg, Gråsten, Flensborg, Gottorp, Lyksborg - January 26

    Christine Hemmingsen - Founder of The Danish Sisterhood - Birthday January 30

    The Danish Pioneer Newspaper - A New Issue


    • January 26, 2021
    • (EST)
    • Virtual Event - American Scandinavian Foundation

    THE COPENHAGEN TRILOGY BY TOVE DITLEVSEN - VIRTUAL PANEL

    American-Scandinavian Foundation invites you to a virtual panel discussion on Tove Ditlevsen’s The Copenhagen Trilogy, in celebration of its publication in English translation by Tiina Nunnally and Michael Favala Goldman beginning January 26. In this event, translator Michael Favala Goldman and authors Morten Høi Jensen (A Difficult Death), Rachel Kushner (The Mars Room), and Ben Lerner (The Topeka School) will discuss this courageous and honest trilogy from literary icon Tove Ditlevsen, a pioneer in the field of genre-bending confessional writing, explores themes of family, sex, motherhood, abortion, addiction, and being an artist.

    Register

    Tove Ditlevsen is today celebrated as one of the most important and unique voices in 20th-century Danish literature. Born in a working-class neighborhood in Copenhagen in 1917, Ditlevsen became famous for her poetry while still a teenager, and went on to write novels, stories and memoirs before committing suicide in 1976. Having been dismissed by the critical establishment in her lifetime as a working-class, female writer, she is now being rediscovered and championed as one of Denmark’s most important modern authors,  and The Copenhagen Trilogy (1969–71) is her acknowledged masterpiece. Ditlevsen’s trilogy is remarkable for its intensity and its immersive depiction of a world of complex female friendships, family and growing up; drawn from her own experiences, it reads like the most compelling kind of fiction, and has been hailed as “admirable and shocking” (Margaret Quamme, Booklist), and “mordant, vibrantly confessional…a masterpiece” (Liz Jensen, The Guardian)



    The panel will take place as a Zoom webinar; please ask questions in the chat or send them in advance to info@amscan.org. Registration is required here or through the link below. The Copenhagen Trilogy is out beginning January 26, 2021 from Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Learn more about the books and see how to purchase by clicking here.

    • January 26, 2021
    • (CST)
    • March 16, 2021
    • (CDT)
    • 8 sessions
    • Virtual Event on Zoom

    LIVE FROM DENMARK! Photo Tour with Benedikte Ehlers Olesen

    Many of us have taken tours across Denmark led by Benedikte.  She has taken groups from America all across the country including many of the Danish Islands.

    Free Registration and Zoom Link

    Benedikte has offered to help us through this long Covid winter by presenting a series of photo tours to help us dream of the days ahead when we can travel back to Denmark.  We will present them on Zoom, live from her home in Denmark, and recordings will be available following each show.  In each program, Benedikte will present a different area of Denmark, and a few minutes at the end for Q&A.   The series will begin with "Christmas in Denmark" on December 22.  The entire series schedule is shown here.  All are free, and after you register, you will receive a Zoom link.  The Tuesday programs will begin at 11:00AM Central (Chicago) time...

    December 22 - Christmas in Denmark Recording

    January 5 Læsø, Samsø, Bornholm and Christiansø  Recording

    January 12 - Møn, Lolland, Falster, Fejø, Ærø, Fyn  Recording

    January 19 - København, Rungsted, Helsingør, Fredensborg Recording

    January 26Christiansfeld, Åbenrå, Dybbøl, Sønderborg, Gråsten, Flensborg, Gottorp, Lyksborg 

    February 2 - Fanø, Ribe, Mandø, Rømø, Møgeltønder, Sild, Eiderstedt, Frederiksstad 

    February 9 Ringkøbing, Nørre Vosborg, Hjerlhede, Livø, Glenholm Vingård 

    February 16 -  Jammerbugt, Tannisbugt, Skagen, Sæby 

    February 23 - Rebild, St. Restrup, Aalborg, Ebeltoft, Aarhus 

    March 2 Skanderborg, Ry, Himmelbjerget, Viborg, Hjarbæk, Skive, Kokkedal 

    March 9 Jellinge, Vejle, Kolding, Lillebælt, Bogense 

    March 16 Odense, Tåsinge, Egeskov, Nyborg, Korsør, Roskilde 

    Zoom link will be provided with your free registration!  Register by clicking here:

    Free Registration and Zoom Link

    Program is presented by NFDA and The Danish Pioneer Newspaper



    • January 28, 2021
    • (CST)
    • February 28, 2021
    • (CST)
    • 2 sessions
    • Online Concerts

    JESSICA LYNNE WITTY

    Jessica Lynn Witty Facebook

    Tour and Tickets

    My story is not ordinary. I feel pretty ordinary, on the inside. But when I tell people where I come from and how I got here, it usually stirs up a gasp or two. My official story simply states that I grew up in Denmark and now live in the Pacific Northwest, but there is much more to it than that. So I decided to tell it. 

    My childhood was spent divided on three different continents. Strangest of all, I was born in South America. Valdivia, Chile to be exact. My parents were missionaries, but soon after my arrival, they decided to move back to the US. I was 6 months old. Needless to say, I don't remember anything from Chile at all. I ended up with dual citizenship - but not a Chilean one, as you might think, but a Danish/American citizenship. 

    My parents met in New York. My mom, from a small town of Sejlflod in Jylland, Denmark. My Dad from the Pacific Northwest. So when they decided, with 6 months old me in their arms to move back to the US, they settled on Tacoma, WA. Kind of fortuitous that my journey should lead me back here - only about 10 blocks away from my first American home. But that's for a later chapter. 

    My parents divorced when I was three and my mother decided to move us, three girls, to Denmark. First Skanderborg, then what I now consider my hometown, Haslev. This is where I went to school, where I had friends, where I learned about life, and love and longing. This is where I grew up. If you can call yourself a "grown-up" at 17; that's when I moved away from home. 
    I then became what I would call a "Copenhagen nomade" moving almost 25 times in the 13 or so years I lived there, interrupted only by a 2-year stint in Barcelona - also a story for another chapter.

    I finally up-rooted, if I ever had roots, and moved to the Pacific Northwest in 2010 when I was 31.

    And that's the short, cliff notes version story. But that's not really how I want to tell it. I want to tell my story by delving into how that story made me, me. What it was like, being a part of two worlds, and what sometimes felt like not being a part of anything at all. Feeling like an outsider for all the wrong reasons, trying so hard to belong, but not feeling like I belonged at all.
    As a child, I would spend the entire year going to school and living my life in Haslev and every other summer I would visit my Dad in Seattle. The alternating summers, he would visit us. I spoke (and still do speak) both languages fluently... mostly without an accent in either language. My dad would call every week long-distance to keep in touch with us girls. And in the '80s that was not cheap! My mom, even though she is 100% Dane, would make traditional Danish cooking right alongside fried chicken and cornbread. I felt the duality every day. 

    Consequently, it somehow made me feel divided. Instead of belonging everywhere, I felt like I didn't belong anywhere. 
    I suppose, with a different outlook on life, this duality could have made me feel abundant, like a citizen of the world, who had many homes. But my upbringing in so many ways nourished lack and dependence. And it made me feel stretched too thin. I was too American to be Danish and too Danish to be American. So I was, effectively, neither.

    Every time I came back to Denmark I would miss the US terribly. But it was never actually true the other way around. This only occurred to me when I finally moved here, that the homesickness I would feel for the US when gone, never set in for Denmark. Yes, I missed my family, but not the culture, not the place itself. 

    In reality, moving to the US clarified a lot of things for me. I have always been more American than Danish, I know that now. I've been loud, brazen, and always had big dreams and big gestures. Not in any way the proper little girl my mother tried to raise me to be. I had a terrible temper, that felt uncontrollable at times and a big voice that was repeatedly told to not shine too brightly, not to make the other kids feel bad. 

    This may seem harsh, but anyone from Denmark would notice this as "Janteloven" or "The Law of Jante" - a culturally-induced oppression that the Danes all know too well. Again, this is a phenomenon I will explain in depth in another chapter. Suffice it to say, it's a classic "crabs in a bucket" syndrome. When one tries to climb out the others will pull it back down.

    So I suppose I was not entirely caught in the middle. I sometimes describe myself as "half-and-half", with a chuckle. But that doesn't really describe me. In reality, I am more like 75/25. In the last ten years, I have learned to embrace my Danish roots, while also fully encompassing how American I really am. Immigrant heritage and all. 

    In truth, it probably doesn't matter what continent we are on. Denmark for me was a time in my life when I tried to hide who I truly was, in order to try and fit in. It was a time of listening to others over my own intuition, my inner voice. It was a time of not being and owning who I truly am and what my life's purpose is. The US for me has been the journey of fully growing into my true self. A journey of growth and self-exploration. Of owning all sides of me, even the ones I don't necessarily like. And most importantly listening to my own truth rather than what others say. It's not about Denmark and it's not about the US. It's about what each country represents to me and who I became during each timeframe I spent there. 

    I can now look at being "half-and-half" and feel grateful that I was blessed with so much diversity. And I can own my big voice and my larger than life attitude and put myself on a stage and feel right at home. But I can also remember where I came from, and what is truly important in life. Love of family, love of friends and most importantly, self-love.
    • February 04, 2021
    • (PST)
    • September 02, 2021
    • (PDT)
    • 8 sessions
    • First Lutheran Church - Astoria, OR

    LOWER COLUMBIA DANISH SOCIETY MONTHLY MEETINGWe have moved to virtual meetings during the COVID-19 pandemic…
    To maintain the Oregon-state mandated limit on public gatherings and the 6 ft (2 M) of physical distance we need to protect our neighbors, friends, and families from COVID-19 infection, we unfortunately need to move to virtual meetings for the time being.

    A number of our normally-scheduled activities will not take place, but we will be converting as many of them into pandemic-safe events as we can.

    The Lower Columbia Danish Society is an independent organization whose mission is to promote

    • Danish heritage and culture

    • Participation in the annual Astoria Scandinavian Midsummer Festival

    • Activities that foster a sense of hygge and community

    MEMBERSHIP - Our organization welcomes ALL who are interested in Danish heritage and culture - you do not need to be of Nordic descent to participate. At this time there is no membership fee to join us. See our CONTACT US page for membership information.

    Upcoming Events

    REGULAR MONTHLY MEETINGS - We are based in the picturesque river-city of Astoria, Oregon, USA but we draw members from many surrounding communities in Washington and Oregon. We normally meet the first Thursday of every month at the First Lutheran Church, 725 33rd Street, Astoria, OR 97013 USA from 7 pm until about 9 pm. Our meetings begin with a short business meeting, feature an interesting Danish-themed program, and include tasty snacks for all. See our UPCOMING EVENTS page for future meetings.

    Email: lowercolumbiadanes@gmail.com 

    Website

    • February 10, 2021
    • (CST)
    • February 10, 2023
    • (CST)
    • 3 sessions

    A GREAT DANISH AMERICAN BIRTHDAY - BENEDICTE MARIE WRENSTED

    Benedicte Marie Wrensted (February 10, 1859 – January 19, 1949) was a notable Danish-American photographer best known for the many photographs she took of the Shoshone native people in Idaho. She is remembered for her documentation of the Northern Shoshone, Lemhi, and Bannock tribes in Idaho between 1895-1912.

    Born in Hjørring, Jutland, Benedicte learned photography (one the the few professions considered suitable for women at the time) from her aunt, Charlotte Borgen. She then opened her own studio in Horsens, which she ran until she emigrated to the United States in 1894. 

    After arriving in America, Benedicte moved to Pocatello, Idaho where her brother Peter had settled. Here she acquired a studio in 1895 where she took photographs of the local inhabitants and recorded the growth of the town. Her documentary photographs of the Shoshone and Bannock Native Americans are still considered to be of great anthropological importance. Many of her Native American images are preserved at the Smithsonian Institution and the National Archives.

    Wrensted's parents were Captain Carl V. Wrensted, later an innkeeper, and Johanne Borgen.  She grew up and attended school in Frederikshavn in the far north of Jutland. One of the few professions considered suitable for women at the time was photography. Wrensted learnt the craft in the 1880s from her aunt, Charlotte Borgen, who was a photographer in Frederikshavn.  She then opened a studio of her own in Horsens.

    She was known for her expressive handling of natural light and the painterly quality of her photographs. Wrensted photographed The Edmos, a prominent Native American family from the Fort Hall Indian Reservation, quite often.

    Wrensted became a U.S. citizen in 1912, at age 53, and the same year she ended her career as a photographer. She sold her studio in Pocatello and moved to Los Angeles where she died on January 19, 1949 shortly before her 90th birthday.

    Many of her Native American images are preserved at the Smithsonian Institution and the National Archives. In the fall of 1984, Smithsonian anthropologist, Joanna Cohan Scherer was looking for photographs in the Smithsonian Institute's "Handbook of North American Indian" and came across the clutter of the Bannock County Historical Society in Pocatello, Idaho. She came across some Bannock County images that had the imprint "B. Wrensted, Pocatello." After rediscovering these photographs and finding a collection of glass plate negatives in the National Archives labeled "Portraits of Indians from Southeastern Idaho Reservations, 1897".she was determined to find out more about Wrensted. She consulted tribal elders from the nearby Fort Hall Indian Reservation, wrote letters to people, checked business directories and looked through tons of museums and libraries in an effort to uncover the background of Wrensted and her photographs. The Idaho Museum of Natural History has a goal of demonstrating ways in which photographs can be placed within a historical context. Only 1% of Wrensted's images at the National Archives and Records Administration were identified at the onset of a digital library collection project. Once they were shown to the descendants at the Fort Hall Indian Reservation, information regarding families of origin were discovered and with the help of written records, 84% of Wrensted subjects have now been identified.

    Scherer encourages the reader to "go beyond consideration of Wrensted's portraits as art," by advocating for the identification of the individual people portrayed in the photos as a means of avoiding stereotyping and the characterization of generic Indians as more "noble savages". "What sets Wrensted's work apart," says Schere, "is her skill in portraying the humanity—the individuality—of the people who posed for her. She captured their presence with a dignity and beauty that transcend time and place." According to Scherer's estimates, today 170 of Wrensted's Shoshone Bannock images are known to exist in various collections, with a substantial number at the Idaho Museum of Natural History. Wrensted's photographs of her Indian subjects were not left with the people of the Fort Hall Indian Reservation, but were, as Scherer tells us, "uprooted from their place of origin and put into impersonal hands—namely, the National Archives in Washington, D.C."

    Idaho State University - Benedicte Wrensted Collection:

    View Collection Online

    • February 14, 2021
    • (CST)
    • February 12, 2023
    • (CST)
    • 3 sessions

    FASTELAVN

    The celebration of Fastelavn comes from the Roman Catholic tradition and that's why it takes place on the last Sunday before Lent (usually between the first of February and the seventh of March). But after the Reformation, the holiday became secular. Fastelavn which means 'fast-evening' was first a celebration for adults with different competitions, games and activities, but later became associated with kids.

    What's Fastelavn all about? From The Local DK

    During the festivities, you'll see lots of decoration like colorful air balloons and birch branches with sweets.

    There are two main traditions connected with Fastelavn. The first is eating buns with different fillings like marzipan. They are sold in every bakery during the holiday. The second is that the kids put on costumes and play a game. They have to hit a barrel filled with sweets and presents. The first kid to make a hole in the barrel will be proclaimed the "king or queen of the cats." That is because back in the day there used to be real cats in those barrels and the aim of the custom was to drive the evil spirits away (people used to believe cats are connected to the evil).

    There are different ways to experience Fastelavn in Copenhagen. One of the options is within a local family, a parish or other small communities. The National Museum of Denmark hosts festivities every year, but participants have to sign up for them. Also, Dragør on Amager island south of the capital offers a big celebration featuring a horse procession, flags, and music. In fact, this procession begins on Saturday in Sundby and continues across the island reaching St Magleby on Monday, and finishing in Ullerup on Wednesday. Another Fastelaven procession takes place throughout the weekend in the district of Vanløse.

    Outside of the capital, one of the most outstanding celebrations takes place on Æro island. The traditional songs by kids start at 5 am. Adults also have fun wearing masks and guessing who is who. They take them off only at midnight to finally enjoy a drink together.


    • March 09, 2021
    • (CST)
    • March 09, 2023
    • (CST)
    • 3 sessions

    A GREAT DANISH AMERICAN BIRTHDAY - REIMERT RAVENHOLT

    From the Seattle Times - 

    Reimert Thorolf Ravenholt was born in West Denmark, Wisconsin, March 9, 1925, the sixth of ten children of Ansgar and Kristine Petersen Ravenholt. 

    Reimert was raised on the family's small dairy farm which had been homesteaded by his Danish immigrant grandparents. Reimert remained deeply proud of his Danish heritage throughout his life and greatly enjoyed maintaining Danish traditions within his family and among his friends especially during the holidays. 

    After graduating from the Luck, Wisconsin, High School in 1943, Reimert went to Minneapolis where he entered an accelerated pre-med and medicine program at the University of Minnesota from which he was graduated with an M.D. degree in 1951. After a residency at the VA Hospital in San Francisco, Reimert was recruited by Dr. Alex Langmuir into the second class of the Epidemic Intelligence Service of the Centers for Disease Control. This began his life-long involvement in epidemiology. 

    Reimert came to Seattle in the early 1950s to work as Director, Epidemiology and Communicable Disease Control Division, for the Seattle-King County Health Department. From this position, he organized and oversaw the first mass immunization of Seattle school children with the Salk vaccine against polio; traced an outbreak of staphylococcal infections among new mothers in Seattle to the lack of appropriate handwashing and other sanitary protocols in the newborn nurseries of local hospitals; undertook what was likely the first epidemiological survey by telephone; and provided the water-borne disease surveillance that supported the creation of a sewer system around Lake Washington. 

    In 1956, Reimert earned a Masters in Public Health degree from the University of California/Berkeley from which he was graduated first in his class. In 1962, Reimert was named an Associate Professor of Preventive Medicine at the University of Washington. During this period, he began his life-long crusade against the negative health impacts of tobacco use which he termed "tobaccosis." Among other actions, he undertook some of the earliest epidemiological research among mothers of newborns that demonstrated the adverse impact of the mother's smoking history on the birth weight of her child. In collaboration with the editor of the student newspaper, he helped stop the free sampling of cigarettes to students on the UW campus and the sale of cigarettes on campus to minors. He also successfully lobbied for the removal of cigarette vending machines from the UW Hospital. 

    From 1966-1979, Reimert served as the first Director of the U.S. Agency for International Development's Office of Population (now Population and Reproductive Health). When he took charge of USAID's nascent population program in 1966, the program had no staff, budget, or mandate. Few developing country governments outside of Asia wanted anything to do with subjects as controversial as population growth and family planning, and there was great debate about whether family planning programs worked. Many doubted that couples would use family planning services and, if couples did use them, that the services would have any impact. But Reimert believed that people would use family planning and that it would have a global demographic impact. He was right. 

    During his 14-year tenure, USAID's global population/family planning assistance program became the world's foremost population program, providing more than half of all international population/family planning program assistance ($1.3 billion) during those years. Many of the approaches that were pioneered under Reimert's leadership, such as routine survey data collection (He originated the World Fertility Survey, the precursor of the Demographic and Health Survey, which stands today as the gold standard of household survey data collection in the developing world.), working through non-governmental organizations, social marketing, and community-based services continue today as standards of strong voluntary family planning programs. He was a pioneer in international family planning, a champion of every woman's right to control her own fertility. 

    Throughout his career, Reimert applied his creative intellect and his persistent effort to some of the largest public health issues of his time. The success he achieved was due in great part to his relentless focus on the bottom line. Concern for political expediency or political acceptability was not a factor in his action plan. 

    After retirement in 1987, Reimert returned to Seattle to be near all his children. In Seattle he was an active participant in the Danish Club and a member of the Northwest Danish Association and National Nordic Museum. 

    More from the Seattle Times

    Reimert loved sharing and discussing ideas. No tradesman or friend left his house without a copy of at least one of his articles and a strong memory of his intellectual passion. He was an open-hearted, generous man who did not bear grudges or carry resentments through his life. "Understanding brings forgiveness," he often said. Hospitality was at his core. Everyone was welcomed and well fed. To say that an event at the Ravenholts' home had been "hyggelig" was, in his opinion, the highest praise. Reimert was devoted to his wife and family and was a large presence in their lives. His last "job" - being bedstefar to his grandchildren and oldefar to his great-granchildren - was perhaps his favorite. 

    Ravenholt, 95, died October 1, 2020, at his home in Seattle, Washington.

    Published on October 25, 2020


    • March 15, 2021
    • (CDT)
    • September 15, 2021
    • (CDT)
    • 6 sessions
    • Online - New Issue Available

    CHURCH AND LIFE - NEW ISSUE

    For more information and to Subscribe...

    Subscribe Here

    CHURCH AND LIFE: A BRIEF HISTORY

    by Thorvald Hansen

    Church and Life (originally, Kirke og Folk) was begun by the Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church in 1952 as an exclusively Danish publication in line with its original purpose which was to serve the Danish readership of the church. Until the 1930s the official church paper had been Kirkelig Samler, but when this had been replaced by the English language publication, Lutheran Tidings, the Danish readers were served by a page called Kirkelig Samler in the Danish language Dannevirke, a privately owned weekly which was unofficially related to the church. When this publication ceased in1951, Danish news of the church was no longer available and this was missed, particularly by older readers. It was to fill this vacuum that the new Danish publication was begun.

    The first issues were distributed gratis to some 750 individuals who might be interested, but within a short time it became a subscription paper with some 1,000 subscribers. It was a 16 page paper issued twice monthly. When the Lutheran Church in America was born in 1963 and Lutheran Tidings ceased publication, some of the readers of that paper became subscribers to Church and Life. Today it has become an exclusively English language publication of 12 to l6 pages (depending on the material available) and is issued monthly. The subscription price is $20 per year. Gifts and memorials make up the shortfall, and the paper continues to function in the black. For its content the paper depends upon the voluntary contributions of a significant number of writers. The December issue is at least twice the normal size for Christmas .

    In 1983 the name was changed to Church and Life. This is not, nor was it intended to be, a translation of the Danish, but rather an indication that the church body out of which it grew was concerned also with this earthly life.

    Throughout its long history the paper has had six full time editors: Holger Strandskov, Paul Wikman, Michael Mikkelsen, Johannes Knudsen, and Thorvald Hansen. The present editor, Joy Ibsen, is the daughter of a former pastor in the Danish Evangelical Lutheran Church.
    Currently the paper serves some 460 subscribers as a tie that binds them, not only to one another, but to the religious and social environment with which they have been familiar. This is not an exclusive group, nor are they guided by nostalgia, but one to which any and all who share similar values are more than welcome.


    Reference: Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


    • March 27, 2021
    • 11:00 AM (CDT)
    • Virtual Meeting on Zoom

    REBILD VIRTUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING ON ZOOM

    Saturday March 27, 2021 at 11:00am Central (Chicago)

    The Spring Rebild Membership meeting will be held on zoom.  Topics to be discussed will include...

    * New Rebild Board member elections

    * Status of July 4 Rebild Festival in Denmark

    * October 2021 Rebild Membership gathering in Phoenix, Arizona

    The Rebild National Park Society is the Danish/American Friendship Association.  You do not have to be a member of Rebild to participate in Rebild events, although only Rebild members are allowed to vote on issues and elections.  Rebild encourages anyone interested in Danish/American Friendship to attend and participate in Rebild events!

    Watch your email and this website page for the zoom link!

    Rebild July 4 Festival

    Rebild Arizona - October 2021

    • March 28, 2021
    • (CDT)
    • April 13, 2025
    • (CDT)
    • 5 sessions

    PALM SUNDAY

    Palm Sunday which is the Sunday before Easter Sunday and the start of Holy Week for Christians is a feast day commemorating Jesus’s entry into Jerusalem on a Donkey (symbolizing peace versus a horse which symbolized war).

    The name Palm Sunday comes from the palm branches the crowd scattered on the ground in front of Jesus as he rode into Jerusalem.

    • April 01, 2021
    • (CDT)
    • April 01, 2025
    • (CDT)
    • 5 sessions

    BODTKER GRANTS - DEADLINE

    Deadline for Submission: April 15

    The Danish American Heritage Society is pleased to offer grants to qualified researchers for study in area of common interest. Bodtker Grants provide stipends of up to $5,000 for students or graduates interested in exploring  topics related to Danish history and heritage in North America. 


    A Bodtker Grant is primarily intended for research and internship at Danish American Archive and Library in Blair, Nebraska; the Danish American Archive at Grand View University in Des Moines, Iowa; or the Museum of Danish America in Elk Horn, Iowa. At the Board's discretion, proposals involving other Danish cultural and archival institutions may be considered.

    Deadlines: April 15 (Notification: May) or September 15(Notification: October)
    Stipend Amount: Up to $5,000

    Grant Application

    DAHS Website


    • April 04, 2021
    • (CDT)
    • April 20, 2025
    • (CDT)
    • 5 sessions

    GOD PÅSKE (EASTER SUNDAY)

    Easter, also called Påske (Danish) or Resurrection Sunday, is a festival and holiday commemorating the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, described in the New Testament as having occurred on the third day after his burial following his crucifixion by the Romans at Calvary c. 30 AD. It is the culmination of the Passion of Jesus, preceded by Lent (or Great Lent), a 40-day period of fasting, prayer, and penance.

    Most Christians refer to the week before Easter as "Holy Week", which contains the days of the Easter Triduum, including Maundy Thursday, commemorating the Maundy and Last Supper, as well as Good Friday, commemorating the crucifixion and death of Jesus. In Western ChristianityEastertide, or the Easter Season, begins on Easter Sunday and lasts seven weeks, ending with the coming of the 50th day, Pentecost Sunday. In Eastern Christianity, the season of Pascha begins on Pascha and ends with the coming of the 40th day, the Feast of the Ascension.

    Danish Easter Traditions

    Easter and the holidays that are related to it are moveable feasts which do not fall on a fixed date in the Gregorian or Julian calendars which follow only the cycle of the Sun; rather, its date is offset from the date of Passover and is therefore calculated based on a lunisolar calendar similar to the Hebrew calendar. The First Council of Nicaea (325) established two rules, independence of the Jewish calendar and worldwide uniformity, which were the only rules for Easter explicitly laid down by the council. No details for the computation were specified; these were worked out in practice, a process that took centuries and generated a number of controversies. It has come to be the first Sunday after the ecclesiastical full moon that occurs on or soonest after 21 March. Even if calculated on the basis of the more accurate Gregorian calendar, the date of that full moon sometimes differs from that of the astronomical first full moon after the March equinox.

    Easter is linked to the Jewish Passover by much of its symbolism, as well as by its position in the calendar. In most European languages the feast is called by the words for passover in those languages; and in the older English versions of the Bible the term Easter was the term used to translate passover.  Easter customs vary across the Christian world, and include sunrise services, exclaiming the Paschal greetingclipping the church, and decorating Easter eggs (symbols of the empty tomb). The Easter lily, a symbol of the resurrection, traditionally decorates the chancel area of churches on this day and for the rest of Eastertide.  Additional customs that have become associated with Easter and are observed by both Christians and some non-Christians include egg hunting, the Easter Bunny, and Easter parades. There are also various traditional Easter foods that vary regionally.

    • May 05, 2021
    • (CDT)
    • May 09, 2021
    • (CDT)
    • Renaissance Hotel - Seattle, WA

    DANISH AMERICAN HERITAGE SOCIETY INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE

    2021 Danish American Heritage Society Conference
    Traditions and Transitions: Ways of Being Danish
    May 5-9, 2021 (Thursday-Sunday)




    ​Venue
    Renaissance Seattle Hotel
     515 Madison St, Seattle, WA 98104
    +1 206-583-0300​

    Picture

    ​The Danish American Heritage Society is pleased to announce and invites you to attend our next international conference on May 5-9, 2021 at the Renaissance Seattle Hotel in Seattle, Washington. This conference is being held in conjunction with the 111th annual meeting of the Society for the Advancement of Scandinavian Study.
    The organizing theme of our conference is “Traditions and Transitions: Ways of Being Danish,” which we hope will provide ample scope for exploring the identities and experiences of Danes and Danish Americans past and present. We also invite the submission of proposals for papers and presentations on topics related to this theme, which may include (but are not limited to):

    • The role of religious, educational, and/or artistic institutions, such as Danish folk high schools, in shaping and preserving Danish traditions
    • Literary, artistic, cinematic, and/or musical depictions of individual and social transitions
    • Culinary and handicraft traditions of Danes and Danish Americans
    • Political and economic transitions, such as the 1917 sale of the Virgin Islands or joining the European Union, that inspired new traditions and challenged old ones
    • Linguistic shifts in Danish and English related to people in transit
    • Translation into and out of Danish and its dialects
    • Past and present migrations into, within, and out of Denmark

    ​Individual presenters wishing to submit a proposal for a paper or presentation of 20 minutes should send their name, email address, paper title, abstract (maximum 300 words), and a short biography of the speaker (maximum 150 words) to dahs2021conference@gmail.com by October 1, 2020.

    Although cultures may seem to be fixed, they are always in transition, navigating between tried and true traditions and new opportunities and innovations. Even the potato, which seems today to be a quintessential part of Danish food culture, was a novel import in the 17th century that seemed both foreign and somewhat suspect. Cultural heritage is the product of many generations’ attempts to hold on to practices and beliefs that give meaning to their identities as members of a national, linguistic, or ethnic group, while also dealing with the changes and challenges that they inevitably encounter. People in transit, particularly those who leave their homelands for prolonged periods of time, are also in a state of “in-betweenness,” trying to preserve their cultural traditions while adapting to their new environments. In so doing, they negotiate both a past that is receding and a future that can only be imagined.

    Conference Committee for the 2021 DAHS Conference - Traditions and Transitions: Ways of Being Danish​:

    • Lynette Rasmussen (Honorary Danish Consul, Des Moines, Iowa)
    • Linda Steffensen (Editor of Den Danske Pioneer, Chicago, Illinois)
    • ​Julie K. Allen (Professor, College of Humanities, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah)​

    • June 12, 2021
    • (PDT)
    • Oaks Amusement Park, Portland, OR

    MIDSUMMER FESTIVAL

    In the Northern lands of the midnight sun, it's tradition to celebrate the sun and the fire element during the summer solstice. We at Nordic Northwest honor this tradition by celebrating with Midsummer Festival

    Join your friends and family in SE Portland to ring in the 92nd year of this historic, regional tradition that occurs each June. We are an inclusive community, welcoming of all. Midsummer continues to be a fun, family friendly and important day with centuries-old traditions and everyone is invited!

    Enjoy delicious Nordic cuisine, try traditional beverages and scrumptious sweets. Spend the day with us and make your own colorful flower crown and other crafts. Play "Viking Chess", Nordic Jenga and other fun games. Take a break in the beer garden before we all come together and dance around the Maypole and sign Nordic folk songs. With two stages of entertainment which includes live music and traditional dancing, you are sure to have a memorable day.

    Make sure to take home some souvenirs from one of the many Nordic makers and artists who will have their booths open all day for you to browse and shop. 

    2021 Festival scheduled for June 12

    Oaks Amusement Park
    7805 SE Oaks Park Way
    Portland, OR

    Telephone - (503) 977-0275
    Nordic Northwest Website

    Nordic Northwest Facebook


    • June 25, 2021
    • (PDT)
    • June 27, 2021
    • (PDT)
    • Menucha Retreat & Conference Center - Corbett, OR

    2021 DANISH AMERICAN CULTURAL RETREAT

    Be sure to reserve June 25 to 27for the Danish American Cultural Retreat also held at the Menucha Retreat Center in Corbett, Oregon. Interesting programs about Denmark, topics revolving around history and modern times, and book re views have all been on the agenda. We reserve the amount of space we need well in advance so be sure to watch for registration dates. Both Himmelbjerget and DACR are held near Corbett, Oregon at the beautiful Menucha Retreat and Conference Center. 

    Menucha Retreat and Conference Center
    38711 E Historic Columbia River Hwy
    Corbett, OR  97019

    Telephone (NWDA) - 206-523-3263
    Emailseattle@nwdanish.org  

    NWDA Website

    NWDA Facebook

    • June 27, 2021
    • (PDT)
    • July 03, 2021
    • (PDT)
    • Menucha Retreat & Conference Center - Corbett, OR

    2021 HIMMELBJERGET DANISH CAMP

    Himmelbjerget Danish Camp offers a unique opportunity for kids 10 to 18 to learn about the history, people, culture, language and traditions of Denmark at a week- long overnight summer camp in the Columbia Gorge.


    Menucha Retreat and Conference Center
    38711 E Historic Columbia River Hwy
    Corbett, OR  97019

    Telephone (NWDA) - 206-523-3263
    Emailseattle@nwdanish.org

    NWDA Website

    NWDA Facebook

    • July 03, 2021
    • 12:00 PM (CDT)
    • July 05, 2021
    • 1:00 PM (CDT)
    • Rebild National Park near Aalborg, Denmark

    REBILD FESTIVAL IN DENMARK

    Celebration of Danish American Friendship - The annual Rebild Festival at the Rebild National Park near Aalborg, Denmark

    Official Detailed 2021 Schedule to be Announced

    July 3 - Rebild Park events and Gala in Aalborg

    July 4 - Tent Luncheon and Festival in the Rebild Hills

    July 5 - General Membership Meeting

    Rebild US

    Rebild - Denmark

    Rebild National Park Society

    We are a Danish-American Friendship organization,
    playing an important part in these areas:

    • Unique 4th of July Festival in Denmark with Royalty and dignitaries from both countries

    • Preservation of Danish culture and heritage in USA

    • Assistance to Danish newcomers with acclimatization and business networking

    • Help and insight into Danish thinking for Americans doing business with Denmark

    • Friend-shipping and socializing

    • Study abroad scholarships to Denmark

    • Professional full color news magazine two times a year plus Rebild E-News.

    • Annual Conference (each year in a different state in the US)

    Ties of Friendship
    It all began more than one hundred years ago in America. A gathering of Danish-Americans came up with a vision ofa special place in Denmark where they could gather once a year to meet with relatives and friends. And symbolically, as a statement confirming that those who had left would not forget where they had come from. Emigration began gradually in the economically difficult years following the Napoleon Wars, when the country was going bankrupt and having lost Norway. it is estimated that as many as 300,000 Danes emigrated in the years up to the First World War. Exact numbers are not possible because, after 1864, Danes from Southern Iylland were registered as German emigrants.

    Their incentive to leave was the dream of finding freedom and a better life. They especially sought out the northern states in the USA, as did other emigrants from the Scandinavian countries, because the climate and land reminded them of what they had left behind. It had an especial attraction for farmers. The western part of the country offered free land, with the provision they would fence the property, cultivate the land, and by the end ofthe first year, have erected a house with a door and window. Normally only the door and windows that were made of wood, the rest of the house was made of sod! It was hard work but worth the effort. For most, it was a good decision.

    But the emigrants never forgot their homeland and early in the twentieth century they purchased land in the old country. In the beginning they flocked to outdoor meetings near Himmelbjeret, as recorded by Ieppe Aakjaer on “Ienle” and Johan Skjoldborg on "Dynaes." These large outdoor gatherings are a popular tradition we have perpetuated through the years. Most of the emigrants had Iyske roots and it was instinctive for them to seek to meet here. The man with the most initiative was Max Henius from Aalborg, and the land eventually selected was the beautiful hilly heather covered ground in the outskirts of Forest of Rold — Rebild Bakker.

    There were more than 10,000 participants at the first Rebild Festival in 1912, and it was estimated that more than 1,000 came from America. Viewed through today's eyes it was impressive. It was expensive and difficult to travel so far — across America by land and the Atlantic Ocean by boat. The King Christian the 10th participated with Queen Alexandrine and accepted the deed for 140 tender land (equal to approximately 1,363 acres) with the requirement: “... that every year on July 4th, America's Independence Day, a "Rebild Festival" would be held in the Hills." Throughout the intervening years the Royal Family have been active in the Festival. We are happy and thankful for that.

    We have been told that the 4th of July celebration in Denmark is the largest outside the USA. We are proud of that. It’s a wonderful tradition that has continued over the past 100 years. It is a testament to the unbreakable friendship that exists between our two nations who share a common appreciation for freedom and democracy. We stand together!

    • September 01, 2021
    • (CDT)
    • September 01, 2025
    • (CDT)
    • 5 sessions

    BODTKER GRANTS - DEADLINE

    Deadline for Submission: September 15

    The Danish American Heritage Society is pleased to offer grants to qualified researchers for study in area of common interest. Bodtker Grants provide stipends of up to $5,000 for students or graduates interested in exploring  topics related to Danish history and heritage in North America. 


    A Bodtker Grant is primarily intended for research and internship at Danish American Archive and Library in Blair, Nebraska; the Danish American Archive at Grand View University in Des Moines, Iowa; or the Museum of Danish America in Elk Horn, Iowa. At the Board's discretion, proposals involving other Danish cultural and archival institutions may be considered.

    Deadlines: April 15 (Notification: May) or September 15(Notification: October)
    Stipend Amount: Up to $5,000

    Grant Application

    DAHS Website


    • November 26, 2021
    • (CST)
    • November 26, 2022
    • (CST)
    • 2 sessions

    A GREAT DANISH AMERICAN BIRTHDAY - TOM PAULSEN

    Tom Bech Paulsen (November 26, 1922 - May 24 2017) was born, Thorkild Bech Poulsen, in Lemvig, Denmark, on the family estate. Tom lived through the Depression and came of age just before WW II started. As per long standing family tradition he joined the Danish Royal Guards when he was of age. He was the 10th generation of Poulsen's to do so.

    During his stint as a Royal Guard, World War II broke out. Germany quickly invaded and occupied Denmark. The Royal Guards as a whole were interned into a prisoner of war camp. The King, Christian X of Denmark, was eventually able to negotiate the Guards release upon a promise that the Guards would cease and desist their fight against Germany occupation. Upon his release, Tom returned to Lemvig and promptly joined the Danish Resistance. He became a cell leader and did his upmost to fight the occupation. 

    These escapades were as mundane as drawing up plans of the local German beach defensive, to the Resistance calling in a bomber airstrike on a local Gestapo headquarters. However, the two actions he was most proud of during his time as a Danish Resistance fighter was being a part of a group of people that risked their lives to help Danish Jews flee to Sweden. And second, finding a wounded American pilot in hiding and help him escape to Sweden.

    After the end of World War II, the American pilot he helped rescue sent him a letter telling Tom he arrived safely back in the USA and how thankful he was for his help. Thus began a correspondence that eventually led to the pilot sponsoring Tom's bid to become an American residence. It was not an easy path, he had a 5 year waiting period before entry was allowed. While waiting, he lived and worked in Canada for a Swedish construction company that was building barracks for American Airforce bases in Alaska. 

    Eventually Tom made it to Seattle, Washington where he decided to settle. He worked hard to become an American citizen. Back then, to become a citizen, you needed to stand before an immigration judge. When asked why he wanted to be an American citizen. Tom responded, "Your Honor, I have always been an American citizen, I was just born in the wrong country".

    Tom worked hard to build Tom Paulsen Construction into a premier custom home construction company. He has won many awards through his career including Architect Institute of America Home of the Year award. However, he always credited his success to his employees. His philosophy was to build his homes like fine Danish furniture. To that extent he hired and mentored the best Danish, German, and American Carpenters he could find and treat them as family. 

    Tom loved to dance and play soccer on the Danish soccer team (until his 60's). He met the love of his life Nadine Blomquist, at a Swedish club dance. Tom and Nadine enjoyed traveling throughout the world for 58 years. Tom's other hobbies were scuba diving, hunting, and learning to fly. Most importantly, Tom was a loving husband, father, grandfather, and friend. All who knew Tom can attest to his love of life, determination, and caring soul.  He died May 24, 2017. - Seattle Times
    • December 01, 2021
    • (CST)
    • December 01, 2024
    • (CST)
    • 4 sessions

    THIS DATE IN DANISH AMERICAN HISTORY - THE DANISH SISTERHOOD OF AMERICA

    The Danish Sisterhood of America was founded on December 1, 1883 by Christine Hemmingsen, a Danish immigrant from Orup, Denmark. Inspired by the success of the Danish Brotherhood of America, Mrs. Hemmingsen established Christine Lodge #1 in Negaunee, Michigan. The Danish Sisterhood of today continues to grow with numerous lodges located throughout the United States and Canada.

    The Danish culture is rich – its history long and distinguished, going back thousands of years. Membership in the Danish Sisterhood of America is a wonderful opportunity to connect with your Danish heritage, learn more about Danish customs and traditions, and strengthen your connection to Denmark. A cordial invitation is extended to you to join the largest national Danish organization dedicated to preserving and sharing these deeply rooted traditions. 

    Danish Sisterhood History

    Danish Sisterhood Website


National Foundation for Danish America
PO Box 1003
Wilmette, Illinois 60091

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