2014 Þorrablót is Celebrated in Northeast North Dakota

Updated: Jan 29


By Guest Blogger Jolene "Little Helga" Halldorson

Park River, ND

Icelandic Communities Association (ICA) of Northeast North Dakota, Vice President

As soon as you opened the door, you knew you were at the right place. You were at the first ICA sponsored Þorrablót, in Mountain. The aroma of hákarl (fermented shark), harðfiskur, and sour rams testicles wafted through the room, as 175 people celebrated. This was a Midwinter Viking Feast to celebrate our Icelandic heritage and pay homage to our ancestors. The foods were served just as our ancestors would have prepared them, smoked, salted, pickled, wheyed, or dried.


Always Be Yourself. Unless you can be a VIKING. Then Always Be a VIKING!<br /> Photo by Shirley J Olgeirson

Always Be Yourself.

Unless you can be a VIKING. T

hen Always Be a VIKING! Photo by Shirley J Olgeirson

The evening started out with a social hour. Everyone who attended was able to sample the many Icelandic foods such as, harðfiskur, hákarl, brennevin, herring and the sour rams testicles. Other foods available for those not so daring were smoked salmon, laufabrauð, melassi brauð and jólabland. During the social hour everyone mingled and greeted each other, seeing people they hadn’t seen in years. Susan Sigurdson Powers, in her traditional Icelandic Costume, entertained as she walked throughout the room playing Icelandic songs on her accordion.


Susan Sigurdson Powers. Photo by Shirley J Olgeirson

Susan Sigurdson Powers.

Photo by Shirley J Olgeirson

Young and old were having a great time, daring each other to eat the foods of our Viking ancestors. Everyone who tried the hákarl was given a badge of honor. They wore it proudly throughout the evening, celebrating being a Viking.


I DID HÁKARL buttons were given to everyone at the Þorrablót that tried the Hákarl. Photo by Shirley J. Olgeirson

I DID HÁKARL buttons were given to everyone at the Þorrablót that tried the Hákarl.

Photo by Shirley J. Olgeirson

The committee chairs Sunna Pam Furstenau, Jolene Halldorson, and Kathie Johnson welcomed the crowd. It was fun to see how many non-Icelanders were in the room to share this event with the Icelanders. The committee led the toast, to our ancestors that bravely left their homeland in search of a better life, Skal!


We had an Icelandic dinner prayer by Björk Eiríksdóttir. Then the crowd continued to feast. They enjoyed the buffet of cod, chicken, pickled red cabbage, and potato with rutabaga. The hangikjöt and rulluypylsa sandwiches were placed at the end of the buffet, these delicious Icelandic meats were made by John E. Johnson. Kathie Johnson baked all the bread that the meat was served on. To help wash down all this great food, everyone was given a bottle of Icelandic water.