Norsk Høstfest: North America’s Largest Nordic Festival

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You don’t need to travel far to experience the best of Scandinavia!

Have you been to any Nordic countries? I’m talking about Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden. I’ve ticked a few of those countries off my list, but maybe you haven’t had the chance to visit this area of Europe. Or perhaps you’re like me, and you love Scandinavian culture and want to experience more of it. Well, you don’t have to leave the USA or the continent of North America to savor the sights, sounds, and tastes of these Nordic nations. Norsk Høstfest is North America’s largest Scandinavian festival and it takes place annual in Minot, North Dakota, USA.

Norsk Høstfest: North America's Largest Nordic Festival

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WHAT TO EXPECT AT NORSK HOSTFEST

At Norsk Høstfest, you will encounter the biggest celebration of Scandinavian culture in North America. Norsk Høstfest translates to “Norwegian Autumn Festival”. Over 60,000 visitors, mainly from the USA and Canada, flock to the festival for the attractions, shopping, concerts, classes, and more. Here’s a taste of what you’ll discover.

ATTRACTIONS

There are many attractions and reasons to visit Norsk Høstfest. At the Viking Village, you’ll be entertained as you learn about viking traditions and folklore. Trained warriors will battle it out as you witness the clashing of swords and shields. You’ll have the chance to try Viking archery with handmade longbows. Check out traditional and creative dying methods for vibrant clothing.

The Tromsø Cultural Village is the place to learn Nordic crafts and survival skills. There are several enriching experiences, including felting, rock-trolling (creating trolls from pebbles), and even venturing inside a Chippewa tepee.

The Nordic Kitchen features Scandinavia’s finest chefs and food delicacies. You can even chat to the chefs before and after their cooking demonstrations.

Norsk Høstfest: North America's Largest Nordic Festival

SHOPPING

Norsk Høstfest is where you can shop for Scandinavian gifts without having to travel to the Nordic countries. In their international marketplace, you’ll be able to purchase unique items that you won’t find at your local shops. These include: Swedish clogs, Ekelund linens, Stoneware pottery, Viking helmets, Scandinavian books, Fine Norse jewelry, Finnish saunas, and so much more.

MUSIC AND CONCERTS

There’s entertainment and live music throughout the entire festival. Norsk Høstfest is home to the Great Hall of the Vikings. With the purchase of any Great Hall of the Vikings show ticket, you’ll receive free general admission to the whole festival.

This year’s artists include:

  • The Beach Boys
  • Alabama
  • Michael Bolton
  • Engelbert Humperdink
  • Daniel O’Donnell

…and more!

There’s also loads of free entertainment all day long throughout Norsk Høstfest.

Norsk Høstfest: North America's Largest Nordic Festival

HOSTFEST UNIVERSITY

Skilled instructors at Høstfest University offer a hands-on learning opportunity in small classroom settings. You can learn Scandinavian folk art, like wood carving, fiber arts, jewelry design, rosemaling, and more. Along with the assistance from an expert, you’ll be able to take your completed project home with you.

Norsk Høstfest: North America's Largest Nordic Festival

WHY MINOT, NORTH DAKOTA?

Norsk Høstfest was created by Chester Reiten and several friends who wanted to keep the spirit of their Scandinavian heritage alive and well in their town of Minot, North Dakota. They aren’t the only ones hailing from Nordic countries; about 40% of Minot comes from Denmark, Iceland, Sweden, Norway or Finland. While Chester and his friends came from Norway, they encompassed all Scandinavian culture into Norsk Høstfest and it became a massive success. The festival celebrates its 41st year in operation in 2018.

Norsk Høstfest: North America's Largest Nordic Festival

PLAN YOUR TRIP TO NORTH DAKOTA

This year, Norsk Høstfest runs from September 26-29, 2018.

TICKETS

You can purchase tickets directly from the Norsk Høstfest website. General admission starts at $40 for adults, $25 for college students, $10 for teenagers, and children 12 and younger get in for free. There’s also a special promotion where tickets are only $15 after 4pm. Concerts at the Great Hall of the Vikings range from $67-100 depending on your seat.

Norsk Høstfest: North America's Largest Nordic Festival

WHERE TO STAY

Minot, North Dakota has dozens of hotels, ranging from budget to luxury. The official hotels of Norsk Høstfest are:

Whether you’re curious about Viking heritage or have wanderlust for Scandinavian countries, it’s worth the trip to Minot, North Dakota!

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This post is sponsored by Norsk Høstfest.

Have you ever been to a Viking festival before?

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