Giants Blog

October 2022 Events

The District 5 Adult Heritage Weekend was attended by 55 people and filled with lots of fun.

On Friday, the guests arrived and some of them signed up for the two hayrides at 3:30 and 5:45. Those who rode on the hayrides were given a tour and a history of Spring Grove by Lenny Myrah. The guests were also able to watch a Norwegian Revy (Variety Show) and to walk around town. The next day, they were able to attended presentations by Dr. John Storlie on Genetic Genealogy and public health and one by Bill Fried on Peter J. Rosendahl. Later, guests listened to Rebecca Hanna present about ale bowl woodcarving. Afterward, those who signed up for the lunch ate open-faced sandwiches made by Lise Kragset Furuseth of Norway and her children. After lunch, guests listened to Elaine Hegg talk about her book Death in a One-Room Country School and afterwards signed copies of her book. In the afternoon, guests were able to choose what they wanted to do including listen to the Krumkaker King, Mark Storsteen, present how he ships krumkake around the USA and even to Europe or make their own Julekurver with Cheryl Miller. Before dinner, guests were treated to a staged performance of the first Sons of Norway Convention by the “Lanesboro History Alive” cast. The dinner was a chicken and barbecue brisket buffet-style dinner. Saturday was capped off with a barn dance at the Gray Barn. On Sunday, guests attended a service at the Wilmington Church. After the luncheon, which was offered by Wilmington WELCA, the guests departed for Vesterheim for a tour to finish off the District 5 Adult Heritage Weekend.

UPDATED Schedule of Events:

District 5 Adult Heritage Weekend

Friday, October 7

3:00—Arrival in Spring Grove, Registration at Giants of the Earth Heritage Center 

3:30—Intro to Giants with Community Outreach Coordinator Rachel Storlie

4:00-5:00—Norwegian Revy (Variety Show) at Giants Immigrant Hall, featuring Robin Fossum on Hardanger Fiddle, and talented members of District 5, plus short sets by members of the Luren Singers, Rachel Storlie and Spring Grove History Reader’s Theater!  

5:00-6:30—Mingling, Cash Bar and Dinner

6:30, 7:15— Hayride tours or walks in downtown and rural Spring Grove

7pm—Norsk Kino Natt (Norwegian Movie) “Sweet Land” ~or~

Uff Da Fest revels! Check out the local Bourbon Distillery 

or Fat Pat’s Brewery

Saturday, October 8 

8:15-9AM—Continental Breakfast, coffee at Giants of the Earth Heritage Center 

9:00—Johnathan Storlie and Bill and Karen Fried will kick off your morning with their presentations.

9:00 am–Johnathan Storlie presents on DNA in genealogy and public health

9:45am—Bill Fried presents on relative Peter J. Rosendahl, Spring Grove author and creator of the historic, Norwegian-American famed comic strip “Ola and Per”

10:30am—Stretch your legs on a Spring Grove walking tour, including visits at the Sculpture Park featuring “Ola and Per,” the signature Viking, our Spring Grove Lion, and more! Shop along Main Street and at the Viking Memorial Park Vendor’s Market and take in the Uff Da Fest fun, or take a Distillery tour by reserving your spot now: call 507-498-ROCK (7625)    SEE FULL EVENT DETAILS HERE:

11:15—Rebecca Hanna Presentation on Woodcarving: Ale Bowls and Decorative Techniques 

Rebecca Hanna is a Vesterheim gold medalist. She has produced works of many kinds, including ale bowls, dragonstil, kubbestols, acanthus pieces, and figures. In addition, she has honed her skills using svidekor, kolrosing, and kroting. Rebecca will showcase examples of ale bowls and the decorative techniques she uses at this presentation.

Noon—Norsk Lunch: Exploring a traditional Norwegian Smorgasbord: Norwegian Lise Kragseth-Furuseth (former exchange student in nearby Caledonia, MN) speaks about Norwegian food customs and demonstrates open-faced sandwiches for us to model after during lunch.

1:00pm—Local author and historian Elaine Hegg will share “The Story of Inga,” as part of her research into a true crime explored in her book “Death in a One-Room Country School.” The story vividly recalls community life in nearby Bee and Dorchester, IA where this crime occurred in December, 1921. Signed books available after!

2:00pm—Choose your own adventure!

  • Take a short trip to Caledonia and visit the Houston Co. Historical Society (2-4pm)
  • Research ancestors in the Genealogy Room with local historian Georgia Rosendahl (2nd Floor, Giants)
  • Take a hike! At the Norwegian Ridge Birding & Nature Trail
  • Record your family oral history in our Professional Recording Studio (extra fees)
  • Nordic Stamping Class with Connie Aiello (extra fees) 2-4:30pm (City Council Mtg. Rm)

Make Christmas Cards and Gift Tags plus optional Commemorative D5 Journal!

  • “Julekurver: They’re Not Just for Christmas Anymore!” with Cheryl Miller—2:45pm
  • Krumkake King: Shipping Krumkake across the US without breakage with Mark Storsteen—2pm

5pm— Historical re-enactment of the first local Sons of Norway Convention by “Lanesboro History Alive!” Historian, actor, dancer, and playwright Jane Peck brings her cast to present “Nordic Convention 1935” for us! This play with music will occur on the back deck at Giants—so pack your Norwegian sweater or jacket! Length: 25 minutes w/Q&A to follow.

5:30pm–Cash Bar and Buffet Dinner with live entertainment by Audrey Almo

7pm—Spring Grove Nordic Roots Barn Dance/Concert with renowned fiddle/guitar duo Beth and John Rotto and special opening act Squirrel Tail (Bluegrass)! Snacks and beverages available! No carry-ins please. 

Sunday, October 9

9am—Continental breakfast (pre-paid) served at the Wilmington Church!

9:20—Church and Graveyard History Tours

10am–Old-fashioned Norwegian Church Service with guest bi-lingual Pastor Rolf Svanoe

10:45—Departure Luncheon offered by the Wilmington WELCA! Fellowship + sandwiches, salad, bars!

11:30am—Depart for Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum in Decorah, IA for private behind-the-scenes tour with Chief Curator Laurann Gilbertson. (Admission and tour fees apply)

We look forward to welcoming you to Spring Grove this Friday, and hope you enjoy all that Spring Grove, Giants, and Uff Da Fest has to offer!

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