Lutefisk and laughter; it's the annual Nordic Christmas Dinner in Vining

This year's event starts at 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 7, at the Vining Community Center.

Featured singer Ross Sutter with his guitar and guest instrumentalist, dancer and comic singer Art Bjorngjeld with his button accordion are special guests at the Nordic Christmas Dinner in Vining. Contributed photo

The annual Nordic Christmas Dinner is a time of celebration of all things Norway wrapped up in a pretty Christmas bow.

If you've never been to this Vining treat, stretch your waistband and wear your dancing shoes. Leif Erikson, Sons of Norway of Vining, hosts the event each year as the culmination of the year’s programs and events and will focus on the food and entertainment of the Nordics at Jul time. The dinner includes lutefisk with butter or gravy, meatballs, mashed potatoes, gravy, vegetable and dessert crafted and served by Chef Hans and his team from Hans Hus of Elbow Lake. Coffee, lemonade and iced water are included.

Following the dinner Nordic Christmas songs, tunes and dances will be presented by the ‘Swedish Trio’ which features singer and instrumentalist Ross Sutter, pianist Marya Hart and nyckelharpist Cheryl Paschke. The nyckelharpa is a keyed string instrument ‘native’ to Sweden.

Instrumentalist Art Bjorngjeld sings comedy and along with his wife, Mary Bjorngjeld, as his Nordic dance-partner, are special guest performers. Art grew up playing Norwegian dance tunes with his family, plays fiddle and accordion and is well-known for his comic songs sung with a good Norwegian accent which will be sure, on this night, to feature the delicacy which inspires this whole evening: lutefisk! Art and Mary will do many of the lovely turning dances that Scandinavians love and they will invite others to join them on the dance floor throughout the show.

The annual dinner will be held at 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 7, at the Vining Community Center. Reservations are to be called in by December 1 to ‘the Olsons’ at 218-282-0332 or 218-282-0406.


Leif Erikson’s tradition for sharing the Christmas spirit is to give donate cash or check at the table in a small bag. The donations are to the Fargo-Moorhead Haiti Mission. Volunteer doctors and nurses travel to Haiti each year aimed at performing surgeries for children born with cleft palates.

The event is limited to a total of 90 guests to allow space for serving and entertainment. Call to cancel if you are unable to attend.

Payment for the dinner, $20, will be made at your table, but upon arrival you will pick up an envelope with your amount due, nametags and evening's program.

For reservations, more information about the dinner, Leif Erikson, Sons of Norway and membership for women, men and children, please call Chuck or Barbara Olson at 218-282-0332 or 218-282-0406.

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