(THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – April 1, 2013) The Scandinavian Festival will have several new features including a children’s Olympics and performances by Norway’s Best Storyteller of 2011 when it returns to California Lutheran University on April 20 and 21.
The annual festival highlighting the Nordic cultures will run from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday, April 20, and 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday, April 21, with music, dancing, food, lectures, demonstrations, vendors and activities for young and old. A Nordic church service will be held at 10:30 a.m. Sunday in Samuelson Chapel.
With a continued focus on providing affordable family fun, the 39-year-old festival will host the first Sven and Ole Olympics this year. Children can compete for medals in several activities including a relay, three-legged race and troll trot.
Storytellers Stina Fagertun and Robert Seutter, aka True Thomas, are also new to the festival. Fagertun, a Saami woman who won Norway’s Best Storyteller award in 2011, lives in Tromos, one of the northern most cities in the world. She has been telling her tales and sharing the music and dancing of Arctic Norway not only in her native country but also in Canada and the United States for the past 10 years. Seutter, a Westlake Village resident whose science fiction novel “Brass Jack: Little Lost Princeling” was just released, will tell his “Men from the North” tales.
Another newcomer, Minnesota seamstress Sue Sutherland, will demonstrate bunad and folk dress sewing. Other craft demonstrations will include woodcarving, knitting, hardanger embroidery, weaving, Viking artifacts, rosemaling and bobbin lace.
For the first time, musicians will gather for a stämma, playing together informally, on April 20. Returning to the festival will be the ABBA Girlz Band from New York. They will perform twice daily backed up by former professional singers Aleta and Sonya Buckelew from Thousand Oaks. Also performing will be the Skol-Olle Band, a combination of two well-known Minnesota Scandinavian bands.
Food booths will offer Scandinavian fare such as Viking dogs, lefse and aebleskivers. Cooks will demonstrate how to make the delicacies.
Festivalgoers can try their hand at Dala horse croquet, play an ancient Viking game called kubb and visit a Viking village and Saami sliddastallan (community gathering). Crafts for children will include sanding butter knives and decorating head wreaths.
Admission is free for children 3 and younger, $1 for children 4 to 11, and $8 for those 12 and older. Parking is free. The Scandinavian American Cultural and Historical Foundation is sponsoring the event.
CLU is located at the corner of Olsen Road and Mountclef Boulevard in Thousand Oaks. For more information, visit http://www.scandinaviancenter.org or email Sandy Grunewald at email@example.com.