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  • Núna (Now) +

    núna (now) Iceland Canada Art Convergence May 26 – July 23, Read More
  • The 2016 Icelandic Open +

    The 2016 Icelandic Open Friday 29 July Gimli, MB: The Read More
  • April to October 2016 +

    1st and 3rd thursday of each month Winnipeg, MB: Knitting Read More
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The regal saga of Árskógur A forgotten legend enriches the cultural heritage of New Iceland

Photo courtesy of As it Happened Productions Author: Joel Friðfinnsson,
Geysir, MB

Dotted across the New Iceland settlement are numerous sites rich with the heritage our forefathers bestowed upon us. Whether it be crumbling and neglected houses of the pioneers or the remnants of former yard sites, which mournfully echo a happier and livelier time, each site and artifact has its own unique place in the New Iceland saga. Remaining most poignant, however, is the physical evidence of the people who settled here and lived off this land, their final resting places, the cemeteries and home burials throughout the settlement. Not uncommon in the early years of settlement in the Icelandic reserve, home burials became a necessity in the event of a death of a loved one if there was a great distance to the nearest cemetery or a district cemetery in the area not having yet been established. Of all the forgotten home burials in New Iceland’s history, one remains utterly fascinating for the legend behind the woman buried there: the grave of Friðrika Björnsdóttir on the homestead Árskógur.

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Hamlet in 35 languages – including Icelandic

Photo: Paul Park Author: Paul Park, Ottawa, ON

“Neither a borrower nor a lender be.” These are the timeless words of William Shakespeare – and pretty good advice if you’re the prime minister of Iceland. Those two worlds met on April 8 as the University of Ottawa presented a multilingual marathon reading of Hamlet. This year marks the 400th anniversary of the death of the playwright. The organizers saved the best for second last by having a section of the play recited in Icelandic.
Professor Irena Makaryk of the department of English said the presentation was a way to honour the multilingual aspect of the school and of Canada itself. Most of the polyglot players came from the university, either professors or students, but many private citizens volunteered as well. Professor Makaryk lauded the work of Tim Mark of the Canadian Nordic Society in getting readers lined up. One alumna of the University of Ottawa drove from Toronto to the capital especially to offer her reading in Jamaican patois.

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Chicago Þorrablót draws record attendance

Photos courtesy of the Icelandic Association of Chicago Author: Lena Hallgrímsdóttir
Chicago, IL

The Icelandic Association of Chicago held its annual Þorrablót on March 19th at the Swedish American Museum in Andersonville. Traditionally we celebrate Þorri in February but this year we wanted to take advantage of the direct flight and booked the musician and chef on the first Icelandair plane to land in our city in 30 years. People and Þorri food arrived safely and we were all excited and ready for an extra special celebration and to welcome our ambassador to the United States, Geir H. Haarde, and his wife, Inga Jóna Þórðardóttir, to enjoy the night with us.

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