Scandinavians love to celebrate Christmas. It brings joy to the short and dark days of a Scandinavian winter. Those traditions run deep in the hearts and lives of the people of Scandinavian heritage and come alive every year in Portland at ScanFair.
This is the 27th year that the Scandinavian Heritage Foundation (SHF) and the Nordic community will gather to celebrate the fun, the food and the traditions of a Scandinavian Christmas with ScanFair, a holiday festival and market.
The fair will be held at a new venue this year, the Exhibit Hall in the Memorial Coliseum (300 N Winning Way). Admission is $6 for adults, $5 for seniors and students, and children under 12 are free. Saturday hours are 10am to 5pm, Sunday 11am to 4pm.
Though primarily a holiday bazaar featuring Scandinavian food, crafts, and sundry, there is also an impressive entertainment lineup (pdf) featuring live traditional music and folk dancing performances and classes.
But my absolute favorite part of the fair is the annual pickled herring eating contest! Check out Nick Capri’s impressive 2008 win below. He took home as a prize a bottle of Krogstad Aquavit, made by Portland’s House Spirits. This year’s contest goes down at noon on Saturday – don’t miss it!