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7-LAG STEVNE: CELEBRATING AND RESEARCHING OUR NORWEGIAN HERITAGE

July 28, 2017

I was lucky enough to volunteer at the 7-Lag Stenve event this past weekend.  I met so many wonderful people that are all just as passionate about their Norwegian heritage as I am. Below is a review of the weekend events and photos, however the event was so robust that it is difficult to include everything here.  Be sure to checkout my Facebook page here and like my page to get regular updates!  Feel free to tag yourself in any of the photos on Facebook too. Lastly you can learn more about the 7-Lag Stevne groups here

 

On July 20-23rd Luther College hosted the Sju- Lag Stevne groups for a weekend of music, dancing, genealogy research, courses and youth camp.  The opening session was held Thursday evening at the Center for Faith and Life on campus with special music performances by the Luran Singers of Decorah and Tone Jorunn Tveito of Telemark as well as a performance by the Decorah Nordic Dancers.  Guest speaker Anette Holt Bratsberg of Skien, Norway gave a speech titled “Sustain Your Legacy, Write Your Story”.  Other speakers included Don Arendt, Mayor of Decorah, Dr. Paula Carlson, President of Luther College, Elaine Hasleton, President of Bygdelagenes Fellesraad, Hayley Jackson, Luther’s Archives, Dr. Andrea Beckendorf, Luther’s Rare Book Collection, and Dr. Kate Elliot, Gausta Art Exhibit in Dahl Student Union.

 

The program continued Friday with courses, vendors, and research opportunities for participants. The Special General Session held Friday evening included special music by Tone Jorunn Tveito and Torgeir Straand of Telemark, Norway.  Tone Jorunn grew up in Lårdal and began singing at the age of twelve. She has sung for the Norwegian Cabinet, the Prime Minister, and the King of Norway and has won many musical awards.  Torgeir grew up in Bø, Telemark.  He began playing seriously on his own at age eight.  He has participated in many fiddling competitions and has won several top prizes.teachers.  Per Lykke of Rjukan, Norway gave a lecture of "Sustain and Celebrate Our Common Legacy". The program concluded with dancing from Tinndølan Folk Music Group from Tinn in Telemark, Norway a Norwegian folk music and folk dance group.

 

Tinndølan is a Norwegian folk music and folk dance group from Tinn in Telemark. The group consists of 18 members aged 13 to 21. They basically practice the dance, song and fiddle traditions from Tinn and Telemark, but also do other music and dance traditions based on the skills of each individual. As a group, they perform at several local events, and each individual participates at “kappleiks” a competition in dance, song and playing the fiddle, and other categories. Members have won awards at local, regional, and the annual national competition. Four members are Norwegian champions in the youngest class (from 12-18 years). Tinndølan’s intention is to keep traditions alive so the next generation can experience the joy and value of our cultural heritage. Members are also involved in teaching dance, song and fiddle to big groups of children. Their latest project was the participation in this year’s season of Norway’s Got Talent.

A member of Tinndølan Folk Music Group sings a solo.  

All members of Tinndølan Folk Music Group dance together at the CFL at Luther College.

Two members of Tinndølan Folk Music Group sings a solos in their traditional bunads. 

 

There was also a Youth Camp for children to learn about their Norwegian roots.  Many activities filled the weekend which included crafts, language courses, lectures, games, and dancing!

Pictured here are the members of the Youth Camp alongside Decorah's Nordic Dancers and members of Tinndølan Folk Music Group.  

Members of the Tinndølan Folk Music Group teach the Nordic Dancers a few moves traditional to their area back in Norway. 

A member of the Tinndølan Folk Music Group teach a Youth Camper how to kick the hat off the stick in a traditional Norwegian dance with the help of a Nordic Dancer. 

Members of the Nordic Dancers teach the Youth Camp dances at Luther. 

This kid was hilarious.  His name is Tor and I asked the boys to pose for a picture while playing the viking game kubb.  They were both a little shy until Tor turned and posed for this picture.  How fun?!

   

As mentioned earlier, there were several classes during the event.  Pictured here is Jeffrey Huset giving a lecture titled "Conjuring Up the Past-The Huset Doctors from Holla".

 

​Saturday evening included ​a dinner, Bunad Parade, and guest speaker David Engen, 2015 Winner of ​Norway's popular reality show “Alt for Norge”​ where participants compete for a chance to meet their relatives still residing in Norway. 

A traditional bunad from Norway. 

 

Members of the Youth Camp participated in the parade as well. 

Tone Jorunn Tveito along with her daughter participated in the Bunad Parade garnering lots of smiles from the crowd with how cute the little one is!

All participants of the Bunad parade went outside to take a group photo.  Many of the bunads are from the Telemark region due to the performers visiting from that area, however there was some variety including a exact replica of a Sami bunad (pictured on the left). 

 

Ok David Engen was super hilarious.  He gave a talk on his experience while participating on the Norwegian reality show called "Alt for Norge".  Ever since listening to him I have been trying to get access to the Norwegian network that broadcasts this show so that I can binge on all 6 or 7 seasons!  

There were vendors as well that had set up shop in Marty's at Luther.  Pictured here is Karen Mullen with her sister Charolette.  Karen's business is called Loppemarked where she curates Scandinavian goods second hand and resells them.  Yes you may be able to find items at your local second hand store, but why hunt for the perfect piece when you can just connect with Karen?  If you are interested in learning more you can connect with Karen at fraumullen@yahoo.com.

Ron and his wife Lois (pictured below) work together, but are experts in their own craft. Ron creates "Rocks of Norway" jewelry in many styles and colors.  

Lois on the other hand works in the world of rosemaling both or her store and custom pieces. If you have something you would like painted you can reach out to her at nordic@mhtc.net. Together they have a website too at www.nordicdesignswi.com

Hal has been on my blog before, but his work is amazing so he certainly should be included. His company is called Bits of Wood. He carves a number of items including spoons, wooden boxes and more. 

Pictured here is Deb Nelson Gourley, author and publisher of Astri My Astri Publishing of Waukon, IA.  She offers products regarding Norwegian heritage and culture, language, history, art and genealogy.  You can find her on LinkedIn, Facebook, and on her website www.astrimyastri.com.

James Olson of Weathervane Antiques and Books was there too.  He also sells items secondhand that have Scandinavian roots as well as books that can help people research their genealogy.  For more information you can email him at jimolson@midco.net.

Marcia Cook designs beaded flowers through a process that originated in France. She offered many designs that were just as stunning as these.  For more information you can email her at mlcook1946@icloud.com.

 

Lastly, but not least I wanted to mention the Norwegian American Genealogical Center and Naeseth Library in Madison, WI. They offer expert genealogy assistance for both beginners and advanced researchers.  The have a wide collection of books, microfilms, documents, and research materials.  For more information visit their website at nagcnl.org.

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