Director of Zone 6

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Here is a sampling of the fun summer activities within Sons of Norway in South Dakota (Zone 6). Also included are exciting ideas for this fall.
I had the privilege to travel with District 1 President, Barbara Olson to meetings in Canton, Mitchell, Rapid City and Yankton. Each are committed chapters with caring members interested in friendship and Scandinavian culture. I am hoping to visit the other 6 chapters this fall.
Membership is a concern for all of us, and the activities and friendships we offer is the magnet that holds us together as well as what draws others to us. We can draw others in by encouraging them with a personal invitation to join us at an activity we are interested in, and giving them a membership form! Keeping the friends (members) we already have is the first and most important step. Make new friends but keep the old, new members are silver and the old are gold!
Consider doing a bus or road trip like the Canton chapter does each year. Open them to members and guests. This summer they visited the Terry Redlin Center in Watertown; and the SD Art Museum, State Agriculture Heritage Museum, and SDSU Dairy Bar in Brookings. Once, when they visited Mitchell, the local SofN crashed their picnic and provided ice cream bars. A mid-summer event featured Fjordland dancers from Brookings. A road trip could be a visit to the Nov. 21 Lille Norge fest in Rapid City or the St. Lucia Festival at Sioux Falls St Mark’s Lutheran Church on 12/12, or a visit to another lodge.
Participation in parades is great public relations. It doesn’t have to be fancy. A Viking helmet with horns on the hood of a car and Scandinavi-an and American flags was a big hit in a rodeo parade. Is there a home-coming or parade of lights coming up? Show off your Norwegian sweaters and St. Lucia.
Watertown did a themed program series inspired by the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII (2015) from the perspective of Norway. All of their programs were Scandinavian related. Consider an annual theme for pro-grams. They participate at a variety of events where “Ole and Lena” wanderd thru telling jokes and giving out lefse samples. Cultural classes were offered in rosemaling and cooking, to the public.
Medals can be earned for walking, most sports, learning Norske, cook-ing and creating a wide variety of arts and crafts. These go hand in hand with culture classes; creations to be displayed at local or state Fairs.
Dinners of lutefisk, torske or meatballs open to the public are great opportunities for handing out membership forms and selling baked goods, notecards and calendars, raffles, as well as culture class projects.
In Mitchell we have Scandinavian ex-change students annually and invite them to speak. See if your high school has a culture club and invite them to a meeting.
Dancers from the Rapid City and Brookings lodges provide activity and programs throughout their areas, providing exercise and fun for all ages. Barnelopet and skiing events are uniquely Scandinavian events to offer your communities. Re-member a SofN donation to a local charity annually. Have fun, volunteer with SofN and share it all with your friends and neighbors. We have something for everyone.
You don’t have to have an event in order to have a bake sale. They can be a stand-alone event or in conjunction with a community event, anytime of the year.