Norsk Høstfest is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that raises funds to preserve and share Scandinavian culture, heritage and educational programs. Program focus areas include Høstfest in the Schools, Scandinavian Youth Camp, the Scandinavian-American Hall of Fame, Skien-Minot sister city relationship, and Norsk Høstfest. The festival also crowns an yearly Miss Norsk Høstfest and holds trips to Denbigh, ND, for the annual wreath-laying ceremony honoring Sondre Norheim.
Norsk Høstfest is held annually in the fall in the N.D. State Fair Center on the North Dakota State Fairgrounds in Minot, N.D., USA. The festival was founded in 1978 by the late Chester Reiten and a group of friends who shared his interest in celebrating their Nordic heritage. The festival has grown into North America’s largest Scandinavian festival with tens of thousands of people attending from all over the world.
The festival features world-class entertainment, authentic Scandinavian cuisine, Scandinavian culture on display, handcrafted Norsk merchandise, plus a fine dining establishment lead by guest chefs.
Norsk Høstfest celebrates Scandinavian culture and heritage of the five Nordic countries of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden. Each nation is represented in one of the halls in which the festival takes place, and each named after their country's capital city. The individual styles of each country's entertainment, food, clothes, art, and jewelry can be found throughout Norsk Høstfest and also in the Scandinavian Heritage Park, the only park in the world representing all five Nordic countries.
While the festival has grown to become the largest Scandinavian festival in North American, there are other entities in Minot, ND, that has sprouted from the same interest of preserving heritage and celebrating Nordic culture. Among those organizations that have
been cultivated through the joint interest in the Scandinavian culture are the Scandinavian Heritage Association, Høstfest-Heritage Foundation and the Telemark Trade Office.
Norsk Hostfest receives no city, county, state or federal tax funds. Officers and directors of the board receive no pay.
Volunteers are the backbone of Norsk Høstfest. Norsk Høstfest relies on nearly 4,000 volunteers to bring North America’s largest Scandinavian festival to life. No job is too small when it comes to making sure our guests have a wonderful experience. Whether it's your first time attending the festival or a favorite fall tradition, volunteering at Norsk Høstfest plugs you into a community that last year-round.
There are several areas that volunteers are needed including:
Chairman Roles: These lead roles help make the festival an amazing experience for our volunteers and attendees alike. This role takes place over the entire festival (with some prep work prior) and makes sure their area runs smoothly and effiently. Chairman function as the liaison between volunteers in a specific area and proper personnel.
Ticketing: Helping customers purchase tickets to Norsk Høstfest via computer. Can volunteer throughout the year in this position or during the festival in ticketing or at the will call window.
Promotion/Flyer Distribution/Booth Work: Word of mouth is an important part of Norsk Høstfest. And so is signage and flyers. Høstfest is always looking for volunteers who are willing to distribute flyers/brochures to various places throughout the course of the year. So whether it be at picnics in Arizona or a family trip to Bismarck, we would love to be a part of your travels.
Construction: We are looking for abled bodied people who are knowledgeable with tools! The "Tool Box Crew" are needed prior to the festival during set up (usually the week before) and during move out (Saturday night/Sunday and Monday after festival) to help take down display pieces.
And many more! We have hundreds of areas you can volunteer in from decorating to serving food to welcoming guests! Check out the application and simply select areas that are of interest to you! Thank you for your help!
Board of Directors (2019)
David M Reiten, President
Mark Tollefson, Vice President
Brent Mattson, Treasurer
Karen K. Krebsbach, Secretary
Norsk Hostfest Official Site
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