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ISSUE 121 VOL 20 PUBLISHED 5/9/2008

Norwegian Heritage celebration planned

By Elizabeth Mitchell
Associate Editor

Friday, May 9, 2008

Thursday, May 8th, St. Olaf's Alumni and Parent Relations department will host Norwegian Heritage Day. The event is intended as a day for alumni, parents and friends related to the college to get together and honor and celebrate Norwegian roots, traditions and identity. The hope is to both remember the past and enjoy the present.

"We will celebrate who we have been and who we are, as we welcome a merging of all our global family," Sheri Eichhorn said. Eichhorn is the club events coordinator for the event.

The event will be held from 11:30 a.m. to noon with a luncheon in the Kings dining room. The keynote speaker for this year's event is Jeffrey Mueller, a graduate of Augsburg College.

The day will include a greeting by President David R. Anderson, Norwegian harp music, a speech by Mueller called "Our Evolving Relationship with Norway," a silent film with clips of both the 1925 Norse American Centennial and the 1930 St. Olaf Choir tour to Norway and an open house in the Norwegian American Heritage Association.

The event welcomes alumni and friends from Northfield and the entire Twin Cities area, and has about 150 registered attendees. Eichhorn said she believes that the event will be a success, with "great food and great programming."

For attendants, Norwegian attire or a bunad, a traditional Norweigian costume is strongly encouraged.

Mueller is currently the president of the Upper Midwest Chapter of the Norwegian-American Chamber of Commerce and vice president of the Chamber's National Association in New York. He was also among the select few who were part of the Minnesota delegation to Oslo in November 2007.

The group Mueller was apart of was sent on behalf of the state of Minnesota to help keep the Norwegian Consulate office in Minneapolis from closing. Minnesota currently boasts approximately 850,000 people in its population who are of at least partial Norwegian descent, more than any other state in the nation.

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