April 6, 2017

2017 SCA Grant Recipients



(6 April 2017)

As the community foundation for Swedish North America, SCA is pleased to announce the 2017 SCA Grants in support of the following exhibitions, performances and other projects.
Be sure to partake in the events happening in your area.

American Association for Runic Studies, Roseville, MN – $1,500    April – December 2017

The Viking Kids Project: Runes and our Scandinavian Heritage, will be an ongoing series of one page documents, designed to educate children and youth about topics regarding our Scandinavian Heritage. For this phase of the project, the American Association for Runic Studies, will team up with the Minnesota Vikings Youth Marketing and Social Responsibility Program and Swedish Professor and international runic expert Henrik Williams of Uppsala University, to create one page documents designed for children ages 6-12 years of age about runic inscriptions. These materials will be prepared and printed during the months of April – December 2017 and made available for public events and presentations, targeting Swedish-American Organizations.

American Scandinavian Association at Augustana, Moline, IL  – $750    June 2017

Sharing Jenny Lind and Midsommar Traditions with Youth and Families: The current Jenny Lind scholarship recipient and her accompanist from Sweden will be introduced to a new and expanded audience at the first churches established by Lars Paul Esbjörn and Swedish Lutherans. The performers will present a concert at First Lutheran Church in Moline and also appear at Jenny Lind Chapel or Augustana Lutheran Church in Andover the weekend of June 24 and 25, 2017. The concert in Moline is part of a Midsommar celebration complete with a parade of US and Nordic flags, a high school aged queen and her court wearing folkdräkt, a program, Scandinavian food, and introducing a new young audience to traditional music and ring dances around the large flower decorated outdoor majstång (maypole).

American Swedish Historical Museum, PA  – $4,232     August 2017 – May 2018

Youth Field Trips to the Museum, scholarships for school children: This scholarship fund pays program covers program fees and the cost of renting a school bus for school children whose families cannot afford the cost of a field trip to the ASHM.

American Swedish Institute, Minneapolis, MN – $4,232     November – December 2017

Professor Richard Tellström Residency, visiting food historian: In late November 2017 The American Swedish Institute will host Richard Tellström, Associate Professor, Food Historian at Stockholm University, speaker, writer and expert in Swedish food culture, for a four week residency. During his stay, Tellström, will give lectures, conduct food and beverage research to examine the under-studied side of Swedish-American food culture while sharing information about food traditions and contemporary Nordic culinary trends with American audiences. Tellström’s residency during the Thanksgiving/Christmas holiday season will provide a variety of opportunities for him to participate in Swedish-American food traditions, exhibits and programs tied to ASI’s 2017 holiday theme “FEST!” which examines how people celebrate the holidays in the Nordic countries. Tellström will examine the migration and durability of food traditions that originated in Sweden and how those traditions are manifested by Swedish-Americans today.

Arts Midwest, Minneapolis, MN – $2,000     February – March 2018

Arts Midwest Folkefest: This new program of Arts Midwest will employ the universal language of music within a traditional context to connect Midwest residents, many of whom have Swedish and Scandinavian heritage, to one another and to Swedish culture. Arts Midwest Folkefest will tour a traditional Swedish musical ensemble to three small communities in Iowa, North Dakota, and South Dakota in spring 2018. Through week-long residencies consisting of public performances, school activities, and community-based experiences, the program will introduce thousands of Midwestern Americans—especially children and youth—in small and rural communities to Swedish music and culture.

Birger Sandzén Memorial Gallery, Lindsborg, KS – $4,000    Opens August 2019

Conservation of paintings by Swedish-American Artists, in preparation for upcoming exhibit: The Birger Sandzén Memorial Gallery of Lindsborg, Kansas, is partnering with the Hillstrom Museum of Art at Gustavus Adolphus College of St. Peter, Minnesota, to present an exhibition of more than a dozen Swedish-American artists who were key figures in establishing a flourishing arts culture in the American Midwest, including John F. Carlson, David Edström, Olof Grafström, Charles E. Hallberg, Carl A. Hallsthammar, Samuel Holmberg, Oscar Brousse Jacobson, Alfred Jansson, Raymond Jonson, Carl Lotave, G.N. Malm, B.J.O. Nordfeldt, Arvid Nyholm, and Birger Sandzén. The exhibition opens at the Sandzen Gallery August 5th, 2019, then travels to the Hillstrom Museum, and most likely to the Swedish American Museum in Chicago.

Bishop Hill Heritage Association, Bishop Hill, IL – $500     June – September 2017

Joe Hill, Swedish-American Labor Activist:  This exhibition tells the story of Joe Hill and his impact on the early 20th century labor movement. Photographs, posters, and music clips will be part of the display. A concert of Joe Hill’s music will open this summer exhibit.

Carver County Historical Society, Waconia, MN – $2,000     June – December 2017
(endorsed by Nordic Heritage Club of Carver County)

Andrew Peterson Diaries, publication: This project will fund the professional editing, formatting and partial printing costs of the English translation of Peterson’s 48 year diary, which will make the diary and its vital pioneer era details more readily available and accessible to researchers, historians and the general public. Andrew Peterson was the most historically significant Swedish immigrants to Carver County, MN. His 48 year diary that was used as a basis for the Emigrants books by Swedish author Wilhelm Moberg, and his role in founding the Swedish Baptist Church in Minnesota, his contributions to local history are many.

Concordia Language Villages, Bemidji, MN – $2,200     July – August 2017

A Summer of Textile Arts at Sjölunden, visiting artist: Sjölunden, the Swedish Language Village of Concordia Language Villages, aims to foster a better understanding of Swedish culture and stronger connections to Sweden among its youth participants through a special 2017 summer focus on textile arts as a cultural medium. An accomplished textile artist and art teacher from Sweden will be invited to join the program staff during its summer sessions. In addition, three experienced Swedish-American textile artists will also be invited to collaborate with Village staff to enhance the arts program offerings and to use the arts as a bridge to better understand Swedish language and culture.

Kalmar Nyckel Foundation, Wilmington, DE – $2,500     May 2017- January 2018

“‘Starting a Colony’ for the Delaware Valley”: This is free, award-winning lesson that the Kalmar Nyckel Foundation brings into elementary and middle school classrooms. Designed to tell the story of the Kalmar Nyckel’s first voyage from Sweden to Delaware, this program makes economic concepts accessible to students and was developed in partnership with the Delaware Department of Education for the State’s Social Studies Curriculum. Students learn teamwork and decision-making skills as “expedition leaders” who must work together to prepare and load their own Kalmar Nyckel for a trans-Atlantic journey.

Luna Nova Music, Memphis, TN – $500    August – October 2017 
(endorsed by SWEA Michigan)

A Celebration of Swedish Music: This project will make possible a public concert of Swedish music for violin and piano as well as art songs with Swedish texts. In addition, it will produce two masterclasses for undergraduate singers and violinists. These events will be broadcast on a live video stream and subsequently made available on YouTube and iTunes podcasts.

New Sweden Center, Wilmington, DE – $1,500    Autumn 2017

“Who Wore What and When”: This event is a colonial period fashion show and history learning experience intended to focus on the youth of the Delaware Valley. Not only will the demonstration emphasize Swedish/Finnish clothing and folk costumes but also include others or the era – the Vikings, Lenni-Lenape, Dutch and English. Narration will describe the clothing, customs, fabric and history of the period, accompanied by period music with projected works of art serving as a background as well as serving native, cultural food samples to compliment this multi-sensory history event.

Nordic Heritage Museum, Seattle, WA – $4,232    May 2017

2017 Nordic Culinary Conference: New Nordic Cuisine has become one of the hottest and most celebrated trends in 21st century pan-Nordic arts and culture. In celebration of this phenomenon, The Nordic Heritage Museum has created a program, the Nordic Culinary Conference, which brings accomplished chefs with Nordic and Nordic American Heritage to the Pacific Northwest. This year’s conference will take place May 5-7, 2017 and feature three renowned Swedish chefs; Kalle Bergman, Titti Qvarnström, and Marcus Jernmark.

Norsk Høstfest, Minot, ND – $2,000     September 2017

Høstfest in Schools and Scandinavian Youth Camp: During Høstfest week, about 20 presenters associated with the festival travel to Minot and surrounding area schools where they introduce Nordic heritage and culture to over 6,000 students through the Høstfest in the Schools and Scandinavian Youth Camp program. Programs vary every year, and include musical performances, storytelling, dancing, arts and craft and historical and educational information.

Scandinavian American Cultural and Historical Foundation, Thousand Oaks, CA – $1,000     April 2017

Songs and Dances of Sweden at the Scandinavian Festival 2017: The Scandinavian Festival, celebrates all of Scandinavia’s cultures. This particular project is to highlight Sweden’s contributions to music and dances. We are asking for a grant of $2000 to defray the cost of hiring Ross Sutter to organize the children’s theater, serve as emcee and manager of same. Mr. Sutter will also teach Swedish songs and dances as well as coordinate the traditional Maypole games and dances to the children in preparation for the Maypole ceremonies.

Scandinavian School in San Francisco, San Francisco, CA – $1,500    Opens April 2017

Swedish Cultural Program opening in Marin 2017: The Scandinavian school in San Francisco is an education center where children and adults gather to experience Scandinavian languages, traditions and culture and build community together. The opening of a new SSSF satellite program in Mill Valley in Marin makes us very proud to be able to serve this community and give the children, who live further away from San Francisco an opportunity to continue keeping their Swedish language and cultural heritage alive.

SWEA International, Fort Lauderdale, FL – $1,000     October 2017

SWEA Promotion Film: This video presents the global SWEA network and how SWEA promotes Swedish language, culture and traditions in more than 30 countries. Our target group is the younger Swedish speaking generation.

Swedish American Museum, Chicago, IL – $4,232     June – September 2017

Magnus Nilsson’s Nordic: A Photographic Essay of Landscapes, Food and People: An exhibit that is featuring original photography by internationally lauded chef, Magnus Nilsson, Magnus Nilsson’s Nordic: A Photographic Essay of Landscapes, Food and People, captures his encounters with the people he met and the places he visited during his travels through the Nordic region while researching his popular seminal text, The Nordic Cookbook. In addition the exhibit also includes ten unique portraits of Magnus Nilsson’s world-famous Fäviken restaurant, photographed on location by Minnesota photographer, Cameron Wittig, complemented by narratives written by place-based Swedish journalist, Po Tidholm.

Swenson Swedish Immigration Research Center, Rock Island, IL – $2,000     Spring 2018

Swenson Center’s Permanent Exhibit on Swedish Immigration: The Swenson Center’s reading room space will be transformed with the addition of a permanent exhibit that documents the history and impact of Swedish immigration to North America. Text panels, exhibit cases, and interactive features will engage the public, visiting scholars and Augustana College students. The exhibit will enhance visitors’ knowledge of Swedish immigration and heritage nationally, locally and specifically at Augustana College, which was founded by Swedish immigrants in 1860.

Vasa National Archives, Bishop Hill, IL – $1,200     August 2017 – May 2018

Digitalization of 100 years of Membership Applications: The Vasa National Archives has 6.75 linear feet of membership applications organized and available for researchers. The applications contain a wealth of genealogical information on Swedish immigrants and Swedish-Americans from 1896 to the early 2000s. Grant funds will be used to employ an intern to scan and enter metadata on the membership cards to the Upper Mississippi Digital Image Archive. Summer 2017


Major support for this year’s SCA Grants has come from:

Swedish Council of America Foundation

Barbro Osher Pro Suecia Foundation


Additional support comes from individual donors like you!