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** Farsælda Frón
Volume No. 16 Issue No.4
From the President
Farwell 2014 – Welcome 2015
In 2010 I wrote that everything is happening so fast that 2015 would soon be around the corner. Well, guess what, it is here. It is a good thing; every year we celebrate another birthday is an accomplishment.
I am the bearer of more good news. It was just announced that Costco will open a store in Iceland in 2015. This is causing a debate among Icelanders who some go so far as to warn that imported meet can shorten the longevity in Iceland. We shall see.
The Icelandic Association had a fantastic year on all fronts; a record attendance to all events and more new members than ever before. We updated some of the decorations for our Christmas Tree as reported earlier, which is a task we will keep working on. We polled the membership with a Þorrablót survey and got some great feedback which we will use in 2015.
Set your calendar for taking down the Tree Sunday, January 4^th at 4 pm and to celebrate the ancient god, Þór, at Þorrablót, February 21st.
I hope you are looking forward to a prosperous 2015 and I wish you and your families Happy Holidays and Gleðileg Jól og Farsælt Komandi Ár.
From the Editor
The IAC has once again had a eventful year. We look forward to 2015 events including Þorrablot, Icelandic Open Golf event, 17da Juni Independence Celebration, Tree trimming and cultural events as they present themselves. If you have not already taken part in these events, I encourage you to come and give it a try. We promise not to bite!
This newsletter includes information and details about upcoming and past events. It also features an article from one of our IAC members, Kenneth, who visited Iceland recently and gives us a synopsis of his trip including some beautiful pictures.
As I prepare to go "home" to Iceland for the holidays I reminisce about growing up in Iceland and loving this dark yet light (read: holiday lights), joyous time of the year.I hope your holidays are filled with light, joy and laughter.
Kolla Kristjansdottir Fass
PAST AND FUTURE EVENTS
Þorrablót survey and Raffle
Thank you to everyone who participated in the Þorrablót survey. It was emailed to the IAC mailing list containing current and past members and 40 responses were received. The results were presented at the General Meeting in November followed by the raffle drawing. Axel Nielsen was the lucky winner of a ticket to the 2015 IAC Þorrablót. Congratulations Axel!
Save the Date - Þorrablót 2015
Þorrablót 2015 will be held February 21st. More detailes to follow soon. The Þorra Committee
Christmas around the World!
The IAC has an annual tradition of decorating an Icelandic Christmas Tree at the Museum of Science and Industry. This year this festive event occurred on Saturday November 8^th. Thanks to all of you who helped at the tree trimming. We are excited and extremely proud of our tree this year, which boasts some brand new ornaments and refurbished older ones. We met prior to the event and fixed up the farm and the church – Thanks Oli and Pam for hosting and Oli, Larry, Karl, Miguel and myself for doing the work. A big shout out to Guðrún Jónsson the new Chairperson of Christmas Tree Committee who, in addition to starching and re-stringing the snow flakes, came up with and executed some great ideas for new decorations and herself knitted colorful Christmas balls. We hope you’ll find time this holiday season to visit Christmas Around the World and see for yourself.
A huge "thank you" to all who came out in September to celebrate Scandinavian Day in support of the Icelandic community and our Scholarship Fund. It was a perfect day at Vasa Park in Elgin. Those handsome Olafsson men, Oli, Luke, Will and Bjorn, proudly carried the Icelandic flag in the opening ceremonies. Lena sang our National Anthem so beautifully, along with Joni. Pam Olafsson was our professional photographer. John and Larry were the backbone of our effort. It was a magnificently successful event on this sunny Sunday. All worked in our booth selling Icelandic Glacial water and assorted pop we had the most successful sales day in our history. We had more water to sell this year than others and we actually sold out, whereas we have taken home many cases in years past.
And, an Icelandic vendor joined the celebration this year - Leda Herman - with her Scandi-mania. Wonderful to have Leda and her daughter. They were also in Mountain this year at the Deuce of August.
Entertainment at the park included Swedish recording artist Peter Nordberg, Nordic Folk Dancers of Chicago, Chicago Spelmanslag, Leikarringen Heimhug Norwegian Folk Dancers of Chicago, Ole and Sven, folk dancing classes, pony rides, a Scandinavian Zoo, a wonderful Living History Timeline and the wildly popular closing act - the ABBA Salute. Attendance at the event is growing every year and we are happy to be a part of this celebration of our heritages. Icelandic Glacial Water is the exclusive vendor of water and we are very appreciative that we have the support of the Scandinavian community of Vasa Park.
Renew your IAC Membership now
It is time to renew your IAC Membership. Membership is the same as last year, only $10 per student/individual or $20 per family. There are two ways pay/apply for membership: Online (http://www.icelandchicago.org/membershipForm.htm) or by downloading this document (https://gallery.mailchimp.com/cd8fd8c44006d28c9bf1b7b96/files/IAC_Membership_Form_2015.pdf) and sending it to Lawrence O. Shaw (address on form).
Entertainers or speakers needed in January or February
Hi – I am the Community Life Director at Cedarlake Village in Plainfield,IL, and independent home for senior citizens. We would like to highlight Iceland for the month of January or February. Do you have entertainers or speakers you could recommend? What is the fee for performances/speakers. Thanks so much.
Community Life Coordinator
14800 S. Van Dyke Rd.
Plainfield, IL 60544
P: (815) 254-3564
F: (815) 439-9651
Two Day Whirlwind Across South Iceland by Kenneth Beckwith Benavides
I spent my first night with a dog in a gas station. Actually, it was great. It's so easy to get into a mindless routine; Iceland is exactly the private piece of microcosm I needed to get in touch with my core.
Skógafoss in the morning. Sorry, Reykjavík I didn't come for the civilization. Onto Dyrhólæy. First, Mr. Drunk man at three in the morning, "can you please tell me how to get gas?" He has no idea. Oh well.
Dyrhólæy, my first encounter with black lava rock and the ocean in the daytime. Sheep everywhere, horses too. An otherworldy surreal landscape; heaven and hell.
Dyrhólæy was great, but Reynisfjall was like a dream. Spires, no, daggers spiralling up out of the ocean; Maleficent's mountain. Iceland is the only place wonder and weird add up to make cool. Black sand, white ocean froth, basalt columns. A Sigur Rós music video -- no, better, another world.
Would I want to stay here? I don't know about the dark winters. Can a mind survive something like that in one piece?
At Skaftafell I met the forest sanctuary, Svartafoss. She was magnifecent. And Skeiðaràrasandur a geologic wet dream. Finally, Jökulsárlon; gems of diamond white atop coal pitch. Translation please? Where the mountain glaciers go to meet with the sea and become saltwater. As they transform they tinkle like bells into smaller and smaller renditions down a river to the surf.
The glacier that manage to survive litter the shore amid maroon kelp and the occasional driftwood and diamond ice masses. A sight to behold, walk on beach sand stones, return with a lost part of your soul.
My adventure, in the remote reaches of Iceland, crafted by human minds and human hands. A world where the winds and sea are king and go to meet with fire, crash, and wonder the mind, wonder the soul--so beautiful.
Þakka þér fyrir að Icelandic Association of Chicago og Lena Hallgrímsdóttir for preparing me fyrir the adventure!
Save the Date!IAC Þorrablót 2015 February 21st. More details to follow. The Þorra committee
Taking down the Christmas Tree Sunday January 4th at 4:00pm Join us for taking down the Icelandic Christmas Tree at the Museum of Science and Industry. Contact Lena to RSVP.
About the Icelandic Association
The purpose of our association is to ensure that the legacy of the Icelandic heritage will be preserved through cultural events, social gatherings and educational opportunities. We always welcome new members and look forward to hearing from you. - More at: http://www.icelandchicago.org/
View our blog (http://icelandchicago.blogspot.com/)
Visit on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/IcelandicAssociationChicago)
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FARSÆLDA FRÓN - THE ICELANDIC ASSOCIATION OF CHICAGO NEWSLETTER. EDITOR: KOLLA KRISTJÁNSDÓTTIR FASS, WEB SITE:** WWW.ICELANDCHICAGO.ORG (http://WWW.ICELANDCHICAGO.ORG)
. CORRESPONDENCE: THE ICELANDIC ASSOCIATION OF CHICAGO, EINAR STEINSSON PRESIDENT.