Høstfest Heritage Foundation sponsors Minot officials’ trip to Norway

May 7, 2019

The Høstfest Heritage Foundation has agreed to sponsor an upcoming trip to Minot’s sister city of Skien, Norway, for two City of Minot officials.

Minot Mayor Shaun Sipma and City Manager Tom Barry will travel to Norway in May to foster economic ties between Minot and the Telemark region of Norway through meetings with the city, county, and economic development officials. North Dakota and Norway have engaged in economic development conferences for years during Norsk Høstfest, sparking the development of business ties related to unmanned aircraft and other industries.

“The ties between North Dakota and Norway have been strengthened by the sister city relationship between Minot and Skien established nearly 40 years ago,” said Norsk Høstfest President David Reiten. “This visit by Minot city leaders is critical to maintaining and expanding that relationship, and that’s why the Høstfest Heritage Foundation agreed to provide funding through contributions it has received.”

Sipma and Barry will travel with and introduce the Minot State University Concert Choir as it performs throughout Telemark. The trip is scheduled for May 13-25.

“We’re grateful to the Høstfest Heritage Foundation for recognizing the importance of this trip and providing the necessary funding,” said Sipma. “This trip will be critical in re-establishing our sister city relationship and building on our existing economic partnerships.”

Skien officials have made frequent visits to North Dakota, both during the annual Norsk Høstfest and throughout the year.

“The Norwegian town’s leaders have been very loyal in paying regular visits to Minot over the years. We consider this goodwill trip by Minot’s leaders to be an important reciprocal gesture to continue to foster economic ties between our regions,” said Høstfest Heritage Foundation board member Karen Krebsbach. “Minot has become a destination for many people from Norway, and a big reason for their interest in the sister city bond established in 1981 between Minot and Skien.”

For additional information or interviews contact the Public Information Office at 701-857-4727 or by email at pio@minotnd.org.


USA TODAY awards Scandinavian Heritage Park

By Allan Blanks, Minot Daily News

July 10, 2017

America has spoken, the Scandinavian Heritage Park in Minot, was voted North Dakota’s best attraction by USA TODAY 10 Best Readers’ Choice Award, Friday.

According to USA TODAY, voters across the country were mesmerized by the Dala Horse, which towers over trees and landmarks at a whopping 25-feet tall.

Along with the striking size and bold artistry of the Dala Horse, the panel from USA TODAY were impressed with the captivating monuments and exquisite landscape of the popular tourist destination.

Described by USA TODAY as a trip across the pond, both experts and voters marveled at the many replicas and statues that celebrate Scandinavian countries, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Iceland and Sweden.

From an enchanting waterfall producing a stream that retires to tranquil ponds to historic homes which surround the Danish Windmill, the stunning landmarks, immaculate landscapes and unique ability to interact with history scored a prestigious victory over a competitive field of statewide contenders.

Marian Anderson, the office manager at the Scandinavian Heritage Park office, expressed great delight for the park’s recent accomplishment.

“It’s a great honor,” Anderson said. “All along, we believed we were number one and it feels nice to earn the award. We’re very thankful for all of the voters who voted for us.”

According to Anderson, the most popular sight at the Scandinavian Heritage Park is the Gol Stave Church Museum.

As a popular wedding and tourist destination, the Gol Stave Church Museum is both a Magic City landmark and a wooden marvel.

In addition to the wonderment provided at North Dakota’s top destination, visitors can experience the Scandinavian Heritage Park, free of cost or provide donations which are used to maintain the popular attraction.

For more information about the Scandinavian Heritage Park, visit online at www.scandinavianheritage.org or call 852-9161.


2015 Scandinavian Heritage Park Visitor Report

Scandinavian Heritage Association volunteer George Officer presented a report on visitors to the Scandinavian Heritage Park this past summer. The reporting information runs from May 17 through October 4.

4019 visitors signed the Guest Book at the Gol Stave Church representing 34 countries. 155 visitors were from Norway! VELKOMMEN to all our guests and we hope to see you in the park and at Norsk Høstfest in 2016.

stave dala


Paradiso Mexican Restaurant Goes Norsk!

Høstfest 2015 took on a new look with Paradiso Mexican Restaurant sponsoring the Foundation’s GAMES OF H0STFEST!

Paradiso drakkar 1

Paradiso General Manger Ray Cook and staff swap out their sombreros for Viking helmets as they celebrate the awarding of an Oarsman “Drakkar” for their gift to the Foundation Annual Fund and sponsorship of the GAMES OF H0STFEST! Mange Tusen Takk Paradiso we look forward to working with you on Høstfest 2016.

To learn more about the Oarsmen Annual Fund and how you can be named the Chieftain of your very own Oarsmen Drakkar please go to
Oarsmen Annual Giving Opportunities
Click on this button to make your secure on-line donation. Donate Now


Oarsmen 2015 Annual Fund awards Drakkar

The Foundation’s Oarsmen 2015 Annual Fund kicked off in 2015 and concluded just prior to the 2015 Norsk Hostfest. This annual giving program provides an opportunity to support the Foundation’s mission in general each and every year through unrestricted gifts. Funding received through the Oarsmen Annual Fund allows the Foundation Board the greatest discretion in using the funds where the Foundation’s mission can be best served.

Souris Valley Dental Group’s very generous gift qualified them to be chosen as “Chieftain” of a Foundation “drakkar” (Viking longboat).


Foundation Development Director Ritch Houge presents Jock Stevick from Souris Valley Dental Group with their very own Oarsmen Drakkar and title of Chieftain!

To learn more about the Oarsmen Annual Fund and how you can be named the Chieftain of your very own Oarsmen Drakkar please go to
Oarsmen Annual Giving Opportunities
Click on this button to make your secure on-line donation. Donate Now


Reiten Family Presents Generous Gift

Reiten $400K Check Presentation-092915-Hostfest-Minot, ND-FinalFinal-100515-Text 180 JPEG
The family of Chester and Joy Reiten presented the Høstfest-Heritage Foundation a check for $400,000 during the 2015 Norsk Høstfest Opening Ceremony celebration. Funding for the gift was provided through a charitable remainder trust established by Chet and Joy several years ago. With the passing of Joy earlier this year the remaining assets of the trust transferred to the Foundation in support of Norsk Høstfest in the years to come.

Accepting the gift are Foundation President Dennis Helgeson and Vice-President/Secretary Karen Krebsbach.


Åsgard VIP Room features Nordic food

Along with the more comfortable and “living room” like atmosphere, the Foundation’s Åsgard VIP Room offered visitors appetizers and pastries from each of the five Nordic countries. Special thanks to Michelle Burch at Lalee Cakes and Joe Venabold at Marketplace Foods for preparing a terrific menu.

The daily refreshments would not have been possible without the sponsorship of the Foundation’s professional advisor partners. These experts in estate planning and charitable gift options lent their time and resources to help promote the Foundation’s estate planning initiative AND make sure Åsgard was a very special place.

Our deep appreciation to:

Judith Howard and Diane Lautt – attorneys – Howard and Associates, PC Estate Planning Law Center
Stacy Norton and Kimberly Lee – financial planners – Helgeson-Norton Agency
Ed Haugen and Andy Leraas – financial planners and insurance – Thrivent Financial
Bruce Christenson – financial planner – Ameriprise Financial

Thank you all for the compliments on the room and refreshments. Per your requests we have added the recipes!

Appetizers – Marketplace Foods – Joe Venabold, Minot Main Store Deli Manager

Bygvandgrød (Danish Barley Soup)

6 tablespoons 90ml Pearl barley – rinsed cold water
3 cups 711ml Beef or vegetable stock or water
1 Onion – diced
3 Carrots – diced
2 Celery stalks with leaves – diced
5 Mushrooms – diced
3 cups 711ml Beef or vegetable stock or water
4 tablespoons 60ml Butter
Salt – to taste
Freshly-ground black pepper – to taste
Sour cream – (thick) – for garnish

Bring 3 cups of stock or water to a boil in a saucepan, add rinsed barley, then reduce heat and simmer for an hour, until tender.
Bring the remaining 3 cups of stock or water to a boil in a large saucepan, add the onion, carrot, celery, and mushrooms, reduce heat, and simmer until tender — from 30 to 45 minutes.
When ready to serve, pour the barley-broth in to the vegetables, toss in the butter, salt and pepper to taste, and bring to a fast boil. Ladle into bowls and swirl big spoonsful of sour cream into each serving. Pass hunks of bread with lots of butter and cheese.
Serve hot as a light meal or a substantial first course to 4 to 6 people, ideally with hunks of bread and lots of butter and cheese.

Kurkkusalaatti (Finnish Cucumber Salad)

• 1/2 cup water
• 1/2 cup white vinegar
• 3 Tbsp. sugar
• 1 tsp. salt
• 3 cups sliced cucumber
• 1 1/2 Tbsp. chopped fresh dill


Mix the water, vinegar, sugar and salt together and stir to dissolve the sugar and salt. Add the cucumber and dill.

Refrigerate several hours to let meld.

Sildarsalat (Icelandic herring, beet and apple salad)

• 1 apple (Red Delicious or other sweet variety)
• 5 – 6 slices pickled red beet
• 2 – 3 fillets marinated or spice pickled herring
• ½ – ⅔ cup mayonnaise

1. Take about half a cup of mayonnaise and stir well to prevent it from lumping.
2. Cut the herring into small slices and the apple and beet into small cubes.
3. Add to the mayonnaise and mix well.
4. The salad should be a rose-pink colour – if not, add some of the juice from the beets.
5. Serve with rye bread or crackers.

• Top with slices of hard-boiled egg (optional).
• Replace half the mayonnaise with sour cream for a healthier salad.

Creamed Herring with Dill and Onion

Servings 8
• (12 ounce) jarpickled cut herring fillets, drained and liquid reserved
• 1 cup sour cream
• 1 cup thinly sliced onion
• 1 teaspoon dried dill
• 1⁄8 teaspoon pepper

In a medium-size bowl, combine 4 T. of the reserved herring liquid, the sour cream, onion, dill, and pepper; mix until smooth. Add the herring and toss to coat evenly. Cover and chill for about an hour to blend the flavors.

Swedish Meatballs


Coming soon!

Pastries – Lalee Cakes, Minot – Michelle Burch, Owner

Norsk Apple Muffins

Yield 12 muffins
• 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
• 1⁄2 teaspoons baking powder
• 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
• 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 3⁄4 cup sugar
• 1⁄3 cup butter, softened
• 2 eggs
• 2 teaspoons grated lemons, rind of
• 1 medium apple, cored,peeled,finely chopped (1 cup)

Topping Ingredients
• 1⁄4 cup sugar

1. Heat oven to 375°F Stir together flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in medium bowl.
2. Set aside.
3. Combine sugar and butter in large mixer bowl.
4. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy (1 to 2 minutes).
5. Stir in eggs and lemon peel.
6. Continue beating, scraping bowl often, until well mixed (1 to 2 minutes).
7. Stir in flour mixture by hand just until moistened.
8. Gently stir in apples.
9. Spoon into greased or paper-lined muffin pans.
10. Sprinkle sugar and almonds evenly on top of each muffin.
11. Bake for 18 to 22 minutes or until lightly browned.
12. Let stand 5 minutes; remove from pans.

Randalín or Vinarterta (Icelandic Layered Cake)


Coming Soon!

Danish Blue Cheese Choux Pastry


Coming Soon!

Swedish Tea Rings

• 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
• 1/4 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
• 1 lemon, juiced and zested
• 1 cup milk
• 1/2 cup margarine, softened
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1/2 cup white sugar
• 2 eggs, beaten
• 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
• 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
• 1/4 cup white sugar
• 3/4 cup chopped pecans
• 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 1 cup confectioners’ sugar

1. In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in the warm water and let stand until creamy, about 15 minutes. Zest and juice the lemon; set juice aside for later use.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the yeast mixture, milk, butter, salt, sugar, eggs, lemon zest, and 2 cups of the flour. Stir until smooth and well combined. Mix in the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition. When the dough has come together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and satiny; about 8 minutes. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume; about 1 hour.
3. Punch down the dough and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough out into a rectangle approximately 12×24 inches.
4. In a small bowl, mix together the cinnamon, 1/4 cup sugar and pecans; spread this mixture evenly across the dough. Roll the dough into a long roll and press the seam closed. With the seam turned downward, seal the two ends together to make a ring. Use a little water to help you seal the ends.
5. Place the ring on a lightly greased cookie pan. Using a sharp knife or kitchen shears, make cuts every inch or so along the ring, cutting only three quarters of the way through. Twist each piece slightly so that the rolls fan out from the center of the ring. Cover the roll with greased plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until nearly doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
6. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
7. Bake until golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove the ring from the oven, place on a rack to cool.
8. Place the lemon juice in a small bowl along with the vanilla. Add 1/4 cup of powdered sugar and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Continue adding powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the mixture is fairly thick but still pourable. Drizzle the lemon-sugar topping over the ring.

Rauman Piparkakut (Finnish Ginger Cookies)

• 2 large eggs
• 1⁄4 cups dark brown sugar
• 1⁄2 cup butter, melted (or margarine)
• 1⁄2 cup sour cream
• tablespoon brandy
• cups flour
• 3⁄4 cup graham cracker crumbs, sifted (or cookie crumbs)
• teaspoon baking soda
• teaspoons baking powder
• 1⁄2 teaspoon cinnamon
• 1⁄2 teaspoon clove
• 1⁄2 teaspoon cardamom
• 1⁄2 teaspoon mace

1. Beat eggs with the sugar until light. Stiff in melted butter, sour cream and brandy.
2. In another bowl, sift together the flour, cookie crumbs, soda, baking powder and spices.
3. Stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture. Mix well. Dough will be very soft. Refrigerate overnight.
4. Preheat oven to 350. Make 1-inch balls with your hands. Put them on a cookie sheet lined with parchment or lightly greased.
5. Bake until nicely browned, about 15 minutes. Let cookies dry at room temperature a day before storing them in airtight tins.


Åsgard VIP Room Welcomed Foundation Friends

The Foundation hosted the VIP Room at Norsk Høstfest 2015 by adopting a Norse mythology theme, a more relaxed environment and a great selection of Nordic appetizers and pastries. The VIP Room is the get away for Høstfest sponsors and Foundation donors.

VIP Room (1)In Norse mythology, Åsgard is the home of the gods and it consisted of luxurious palaces and halls, in which the gods (whose chief was Odin) dwelled, conferred, and banqueted. Fittingly, Åsgard welcomed our generous friends during their visit to Høstfest 2015 creating a highly desired space for fellowship and the sharing of our Scandinavian heritage, culture and legacy. Even the entry to Åsgard was true to Norse mythology as it represented Bifröst the burning rainbow bridge that reaches between Midgard (the world) and Åsgard.

VIP Room (9)

Creating a special place like Åsgard would not have been possible without the generous support of our friends. Special recognition goes out to:
Souris Valley Dental logo
Mark Hildahl, DDS, Jock Stevick, DDS, David Keup, DDS and Jerick Hensen, DDS for sponsoring the room throughout Høstfest.

TRG Logo SF Logo Good Life
For providing the sofas and loveseats that transformed the VIP Room into a living room with a view of Stockholm Hall.

Niess Impressions provided signage for the Foundation in Åsgard and at the Foundation’s booth on Chester Avenue.

Lowes Logo fullsize with bulding

Lowe’s Floral and Garden Center brightened the room with a tremendous water fountain display complete with live plants and this gorgeous centerpiece.
VIP Room (22)

We would be remiss not to thank the volunteers who donated countless hours in greeting our guests and taking care of the room and the goodies!

A shout out to Todd Fettig and the Coldwell Banker team for welcoming our guests at the Bifröst entrance. They have been at the gate for several years and did a great job as the Foundation took on the role of host.
VIP Room (3)
To Andy Heidt and his team (Michelle Betz, Sharon and Herb Schwartz, Richard and Arlyce Holtz, Theresa Gochanour, Diane, Doris and Amber Heidt, Lila Striefel and Steve Weiskopf) who were in charge of the minute by minute activities inside the room. They couldn’t have performed at a higher level welcoming guest, keeping the appetizer and pastry trays full. The refreshment table was a thing of beauty. Please stop by the Åsgard Food post for recipes!


Høstfest artifact found in Oslo Hall!

This action figure found in the rafters of Oslo Hall years ago recently resurfaced!

Høstfest volunteers are dedicated and creative. This WWF action figure brandished a Seafood from Norway shield and Norwegian flag when found many years ago.

We would like to recognize the person(s) responsible for this piece of Høstfest volunteer history. We’ll know you if you can remember the words on the flag or the message on the shield. HINT: the year was 2001!

Please give the Foundation office a call (701)852-1027 if you are the creative one!

Action hero


Dik Browne lets Hagar tell it like it is!

Hagar Bragging - Dik Browne


Visit the official Hostfest site
Visit the Scandinavian Heritage Association site
Visit the Scandinavian Hall of Fame site