Astoria Scandinavian Midsummer Festival
June 15, 16 & 17, 2018
The Astoria Scandinavian Midsummer Festival has been a tradition on the North Coast of Oregon for over forty years. The Festival takes place typically on the 3rd full weekend of June. The festival embodies the rich cultural heritage that was transplanted to the Astoria, Oregon region by emigrating Scandinavians. In the Pacific Northwest they found the same bounteous seas and forests as in their native lands and the demand for their skills at managing them. During the three days of the festival over a dozen Scandinavian musical, dance, and theater groups are scheduled to entertain . Retail booths will offer handcrafts, Scandinavian import items, and traditional Scandinavian foods.
HERITAGE TRADITION FAMILY FOOD FUN
STAY TUNED! MORE UPDATES TO FOLLOW
Astoria City Council moves forward with Scandinavian Heritage Park
The Astoria Scandinavian Heritage Association is rejoicing that it has finally reached an agreement with the Astoria City Council which will allow it to move forward with its plans for a monument honoring Scandinavian immigrants in the former People’s Park in downtown Astoria on the Riverwalk. When the monument is completed, the park will be renamed Scandinavian Heritage Park. Fundraising will start soon to fund design, construction, and maintenance of the monument. The Astoria Rotary Club will work with ASHA to maintain the park. ASHA anticipates it will take up to two years to complete the process. Follow progress at the newly renamed park website: www.astoriascanpark.org
Tributes to ABBA and FLEETWOOD MAC at 2018 Festival
By popular demand, ARRIVAL, Canada’s tribute to ABBA, will return to the 2018 Astoria Scandinavian Midsummer Festival accompanied by DREAMS, Canada’s Fleetwood Mac Tribute Band. ARRIVAL performed their ABBA show to a large and enthusiastic audience at last year’s 50th anniversary festival and people who saw the show and people who missed the show have requested that we bring this group back. There will be one performance only at 7 PM on Saturday, June 16, 2018, at the Clatsop County Fairgrounds. DREAMS will perform Fleetwood Mac favorites from 7 to 7:45 PM. During the half-hour break for costume changes, there will be a Scandinavian joke telling contest. Bring your best jokes and audition at 6 PM if you’d like to be included. ARRIVAL will perform their ABBA tribute from 8:15 to 9 PM and a public dance with Coreen Bergholm’s Scandinavian Country Band will follow in the exhibit hall.
Admission to the ARRIVAL/DREAMS concert includes admission to the festival after 5 PM. Shopping, snacks, a Viking dinner, and beverages will be available and the beer garden will be open before and after the show. The arena where most of the retail booths are located will close briefly from 6 to 6:30 PM when everyone with a ticket will be readmitted to find a seat near the main stage.
Don’t miss this experience to enjoy classic feel-good tunes from an outstanding tribute band. Bring your friends and enjoy a summer evening you’ll talk about for years. Reserved seats in the first five rows cost $35. The remaining reserved seats on the floor cost $25. Tickets for the general seating area in the bleachers cost $15. There is also some general admission floor seating for handicapped. Complete ticket information will be posted soon.
Scandinavian Midsummer Festival Announces Leadership
The Astoria Scandinavian Midsummer Festival Association announces a change in leadership. Leila Collier, who lead the festival committee for the past three years, is stepping down. The two new co-chairs are Tony Larson and Carla Oja.
Larson has a law degree from Willamette University and is of Danish descent. He’s a professional mediator, Chairman of the Scan Oregon Lodge, Life Patron in the American Branch of the International Law Association, and Life Member of the Society for the Advancement of Scandinavian Studies. Tony and his wife, Shelly, live in Portland and have one son, Torsten, and await their first daughter in May.
Oja has a degree in resource recreational management and is an instructional assistant at Lewis and Clark School in the Astoria School District. She’s former manager at Tapiola Pool and a long-time swim teacher and coach. Oja’s husband Alan is of Finnish decent and Carla recently found out through ancestry testing that she is also of Scandinavian descent. All four Oja children were active in the festival dance groups, courts, and flag ceremonies when they were growing up and their mother says they would rather miss Christmas than the Midsummer Festival!
Other officers for the upcoming year include Treasurer Carole Lyngstad, Secretary Bonnie Fisher, Historian Sonja Madsen, and Publicist Judi Lampi.
The Scandinavian Midsummer Festival was named an Oregon Heritage Tradition in 2017 and is preparing for its fifty-first festival on June 15-17, 2018, at the Clatsop County Fairgrounds. The festival committee is comprised of approximately forty volunteers who work year round to prepare for the event and another forty volunteers who help in June. The festival is also supported by the local Scandinavian lodges and their volunteers at festival time too.
People who are interested in volunteering should contact the lodge of their choice or the festival committee on their website at www.astoriascanfest.com. It is not necessary to be Scandinavian to participate in this community event. All are welcome.
Kristoffer Kleiveland and Maria Skjeldrum Toppe from Norway at Midsummer 2018
The Kleiveland Toppe Duo is known for their humorous interaction and contagiously fun mood as well as their culturally unique folk music from Norway.
Kristoffer Kleiveland on button accordion is familiar to Astoria Scandinavian Festival audiences having appeared here in 2014 with Sindre Fotland. He plays his musical, danceable tunes on a small button accordion and has won first place at accordion championships in Norway several times.
Maria Skjeldrum Toppe plays the traditional Norwegian Hardanger fiddle. She focuses on the folk music from Western Norway and plays lyrical pieces as well as dance music. Recently she received a grant to document the Hardanger fiddle music in the areas around Bergen, Norway.
Both Kleiveland and Toppe are well-rooted in their instruments and in the folk tradition. They find their distinctive character in the music of North Hordaland and Western Norway which they convey with great empathy along with stories from the old days, personal experiences, and impulsive improvisation.
Join us at the Clatsop County Fairgrounds located at
92937 Walluski Loop in Astoria, Oregon.
92937 Walluski Loop in Astoria, Oregon.