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Bjórdagur – “Beer Day” is coming to Winnipeg

Image courtesy of the Árni Magnússon Institute  

Celebrate the anniversary of the end of prohibition in Iceland by partaking in some bjór og pylsur – that’s beer and hotdogs – on Sunday, March 1, 2015 at The Brogue, 800 Pembina Highway, Winnipeg. There’s room for 140 people, starting at 6:00 p.m. and continuing until we’re kicked out. Tickets are $15 per person and the price includes a flight of Egils Gull, Bríó and Brogue brews with a famous Icelandic hotdog to cleanse the palate between sips. Net proceeds will go to Lögberg-Heimskringla.
Unlike the old days before March 1, 1989, you will not have to mix brennivín with your non-alcoholic beer; this was a practice which one can hardly believe, but it did really happen and it was called bjórlíki – “like beer.” Truth be told, it wasn’t as much “like beer” as people would have liked.


Vigdís Finnbogadóttir to keynote Hekla Club’s Samkoma in Minneapolis

Photo courtesy of www.iceland.is Author: Maggie Hjalmarson Lesher, Minneapolis, MN

In collaboration with the University of Minnesota and the Icelandic American Association of Minnesota (IAAMN), the Icelandic Hekla Club invited Madame Vigdís Finnbogadóttir, former President of Iceland and current UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador of Languages of the World, to be the keynote speaker at Hekla’s 90th Anniversary Samkoma celebration.
Auður Hauksdóttir, director of the Vigdís Finnbogadóttir Institute of Foreign Languages and chair of the Vigdís International Centre for Multilingualism and Intercultural Understanding, will also speak at the Samkoma.
In addition, Madame Vigdís will speak at the opening reception of the Ninth International Conference on Language Teacher Education, sponsored by the Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition at the University of Minnesota (CARLA).


An unexpected visitor

Photo: Stefan Jonasson Author: Olof Bertram, Nanaimo, BC

Bordered by low mountains, Norðfjörður in eastern Iceland stretches inland for some miles. There on the coast, about the year 1860, my paternal grandparents made their home. Sigfús and Ólöf established their farm on a peaceful promontory rising out of the water. Little did they realize that they were founding what in a few years would become a bustling village.
For the family there were distinct advantages to the location. Here sheep cropped the grasses on the mountainsides, while the cows and horses thrived on the tún, the level carpet of green hayland which lay behind the farm. The ocean with all its bounty was close at hand. Many ships and fishing boats often sought refuge in the fjord from the stormy North Sea.
Sigfús was able to trade with seamen from various countries – offering fresh water, lamb, milk, cheese, and eggs in exchange for cotton fishing nets and other imported goods, and an occasional bottle of fine wine.


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