Norway House in Victoria celebrates 75 years of community service – Saanich News
From folk dancing to traditional fish delicacies, Victoria’s Eidsvold Lodge has tried to put the community at the center of everything it has done for the past 75 years.
Also known as Norway House, the center’s mission is to promote Norwegian and Scandinavian culture in its long-standing local history on Vancouver Island.
Pandemic restrictions have pushed Eidsvold’s 75th birthday celebrations back by a year, but its Norwegian, Swedish, Icelandic and Sami (Northern Norway’s indigenous community) members welcome the public to an event-filled open day family cultural events on Saturday (June 11).
The lodge is an important Norwegian connection for its members – some who have been at the center for 65 years – who were born abroad and others, like president Linda Murray, who have Scandinavian ties but are originally from Norway. here.
“It brings back memories for them and for us it’s a window into what our culture would have been like if we were in those Scandinavian countries,” Murray said.
The center attempted to advance community service through its student crèches, its cross-country ski program for the visually impaired, and by helping to launch the Cross-Cultural Club of Greater Victoria.
Reflecting their social custom of congregating over a meal, the open house will have treats – like the waffle-shaped rolled cookie called krumkake – ready for the public.
“We would like to bring everyone we can over just to see what the Norwegian and Scandinavian culture is all about, give them a taste of the food and show them the facilities.”
The lodge itself brings a lot of pride to the local community, as Murray said it is one of the few physical centers dedicated to Norwegian culture in Canada. Its hardwood floors have been trampled by traditional Leikarring folk dancers for decades, with this group also performing at the open day.
The lodge also houses a large library of Scandinavian books which will be on display on Saturday.
The open day will also include traditional folk painting, children’s storytelling, craft activities and more. The Saturday Open House is from 1-4 p.m. at 1110 Hillside Avenue.
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