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2024 Events

Spring Fling (April 6-7) Come welcome spring and the beginning of the tourist season in Bishop Hill as various stores, museums and restaurants offer special discounts, events, and activities. Collect signatures from 6 businesses or museums and be entered for a gift basket drawing at the Colony Store. Call 309-927-3898 or email VasaArchivist@gmail.com for more information. 

Exhibit Opening (April 6-7, 10-4) Join the Vasa National Archives and Museum as we open our doors for the 2024 season with an Opening Reception for Rocky Mountain Lodges. The Vasa Order established lodges in Colorado and Wyoming in 1911. Take a look with us as we explore the history of the rise and fall of Rocky Mountain District #11.

 A Sampling of Our Samling will be open for a second year showcasing the pieces from our collection that don’t get a  chance to come out and shine. Free and open to the public. Light refreshments available. Call 309-927-3898 or email VasaArchivist@gmail.com for more information. 

 

Valborg and Wiener Roast (April 26, 6 pm) Experience an ancient Swedish traditional bonfire as we welcome spring’s return at the Vasa National Archives. Yard games, activities, hotdogs, hot coffee and cocoa will be available. This event is free and open to the public. In the event of rain, we will be on the Vasa National Archive second level. Call 309-927-3898 or email VasaArchivist@gmail.com for more information.

 

Finnish Field Day: Hobby Horse Games (May 25, 1 – 4pm) Children and adults have been riding hobby horses, or stick horses, for centuries for play, to mock elites, and re-enactments. In 2017, hobby horsing competitions (where teenagers and young adults mimicked horse competitions) were introduced to the public through  Selma Vilhunen's 2017 film Keppihevosten vallankumous (Hobbyhorse Revolution). Come make a hobby horse or bring your own and enjoy a day of jumps, races and dressage/dancing. Hobby horses are $10 each. Supplies are limited and reservations are suggested. Call 309-927-3898 or email VasaArchivist@gmail.com for more information.

 

Midsummer Respite (June 22, 10 – 4, during Midsummer) If you get too hot or dry while exploring Bishop Hill during this summer celebration, the Vasa National Archives invites you to take a break and enjoy fika with us. Fika is a Swedish custom of offering visitors a drink and a snack. To help pass the time while you cool off, we have a make-and-take clay sculpture station for you. Free and open to the Public. Call 309-927-3898 or email VasaArchivist@gmail.com for more information.

 

Butter Making (Sept. 28-29, 10 – 5, during Jordbruksdagarna) Bishop Hill colonists, like many Swedes, were excellent butter and cheese makers. Stop by our booth in the Demonstration area to learn about butter making and make your own butter to take home. Free and open to the Public. Call 309-927-3898 or email VasaArchivist@gmail.com for more information.

 

Bargain Hunter Weekend (Oct. 12-13) Come celebrate the bounty of fall in Bishop Hill as various stores, museums and restaurants offer special discounts, events, and activities. Collect signatures from 6 businesses or museums and be entered for a gift basket drawing at the Colony Store. Call 309-927-3898 or email VasaArchivist@gmail.com for more information.

 

Make and Take Dala Horses (Nov. 29-Dec. 1 and Dec 7-8, 10 - 4, while supplies last) During the holiday weekends, paint stations will be set up in the Vasa National Archive for painters to decorate their own wooden Dala Horse. Participants are welcome to leave their Dala horses at the archive to dry while shopping in Bishop Hill. Paint, brushes, and smocks provided.

 

During the week, the paint stations will not be available, but you can take Dala Horse kits home to paint. Each kit includes 3 colors of paint, a brushes, and a Dala Horse. The Dala Horses are available for a $8 per horse whether you paint here or at home. Painters can call or email to reserve horses to ensure supply. Call 309-927-3898 or email VasaArchivist@gmail.com for more information.

 

Closing Reception (Dec. 13-14, 6-9 pm, during Lucia Nights) Come say goodbye to the Vasa exhibit on A Sampling of Our Samling. This is also a final celebration of the 2024 season. Coffee and cookies will be available to visitors at the Vasa National Archives for the closing reception. Free and open to the public.  Call 309-927-3898 or email VasaArchivist@gmail.com for more information.

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