This weekend the Scandinavian Midsummer Festival in Astoria celebrates it's 46th year with all the food, the crafts, the history, and the music that has made the festival a favorite for locals and a destination for visitors.
For 2013 the festival features Harald Haugaard and Helene Blum of Denmark. Harald won Entertainer of the Year and Best Folk Album of the year in the 2012 Danish Music Awards. Haugaard and Blum visited Astoria previously in 2011 and are back by popular demand. 2012 Miss Scandinavia, Meg Dowaliby (pictured left) will surrender her crown to one of the 2013 princesses who will then rule over the festival and represent the organization for the year appearing before civic groups and traveling with her court to participate in upcoming events like the 2013 Astoria Regatta.
The Festival begins Friday afternoon at the Clatsop County fairgrounds with many booths opening at 2:00pm with each featuring something of a Scandinavian flavor. Several music groups will be performing through the afternoon and early evening. Friday night the presentation of the court and a competition will take place between the young ladies of the festival court who will each talk about her heritage wearing a traditional costume from the countries they represent. One will be selected to rule the event. Following the coronation a parade leads to a bonfire where a hex burning will take place. Small dolls made of hay are thrown in a fire to bring good luck and banish evil spirits.
The Festival gets into full swing again on Saturday with numerous events, folk dancing, and lots of music on both the festival stage and the very popular beer garden. For more information go to: www.astoriascanfest.com