Friday, August 14, 2020     Volume: 21, Issue: 24
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Santa Maria Sun / Art

The following article was posted on July 8th, 2020, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 21, Issue 19 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 21, Issue 19

With the official cancellation of Solvang Danish Days, IDK Events proposes an alternative lineup of celebratory options

By CALEB WISEBLOOD

For Max Hanberg, owner of Solvang Shoe Store, the cancellation of this year’s Solvang Danish Days Festival (originally scheduled to take place Sept. 18 through 20) is disappointing not only as a local business holder but also as a nearly lifelong fan of the event. 


Alternative options
Check solvangusa.com for updates on IDK Events’ alternative lineup of in-person and virtual events in place of this year’s canceled Solvang Danish Days Festival (next year’s festival is scheduled for Sept. 17 through 19, 2021).

HORSE SENSE
The Solvang Danish Days Foundation officially announced the cancellation of this year’s festival due to COVID-19 concerns. IDK Events, Solvang’s tourism marketing consultant, is currently planning a lineup of alternative events in the festival’s place (the weekend of Sept. 18 through 20).
PHOTO COURTESY OF THERESA GINGRAS

Fond memories of the town’s beloved tradition are easy to recall for Hanberg, who grew up in Solvang and spent some of his youth working at Solvang Shoe Store, long before purchasing the shop as an adult.

“My earliest memories of Danish Days are doing gymnastics with Viggo Tarnow in Parking Lot 1, and the parade—marching in the Solvang School band with clogs and Danish outfits,” Hanberg told the Sun.

Reflecting on later years, Hanberg remembers working the event, “moving park benches into Solvang from Cachuma Lake, on a semitruck and trailer, and then moving them back at the end of Danish Days,” he said.

In 1995, when the Solvang City Council established the Solvang Danish Days Foundation—a nonprofit designated to formally plan and organize the town’s Danish Days festivities each year—Hanberg joined Ken Andersen, Brenda Anderson, Hans Birkholm, Howard Petersen, David Rasmussen, and Henry Skytt as the group’s original board members. 


A GAME OF GIVE AND BAKE
IDK Events hopes to organize a selection of limited-seating, Danish-inspired dinner parties, baking classes, and other events in person, as well as a variety of virtual counterparts for those who wish to enjoy the festivities from their own homes.
PHOTO COURTESY OF THERESA GINGRAS

This year’s annual festival would have been the 84th. The board officially announced the event’s cancellation on June 24, due to COVID-19 concerns.

“I’m definitely going to miss the camaraderie of all of the locals and friends that come out to enjoy Danish Days,” said Hanberg, who currently serves as co-chair of the board.

Over the years, Hanberg said one of his favorite aspects of the festival is “seeing the preservation of all of our Danish traditions, from our rich heritage and culture.”

Hanberg elaborated on the festival’s cancellation in a formal press release from the Solvang Danish Days Foundation.

“With this announcement, we share the disappointment of our Santa Ynez Valley locals and the thousands of visitors who look forward to attending Solvang Danish Days each year,” he said in the release. “We are currently planning our 2021 event and look forward to seeing everyone again then.”

Although the release explained that none of the festival’s traditional events will be held in town until next year’s celebration, plans for alternative options to be hosted by the city in the festival’s place are underway. 


SIX FEET APART
IDK Events is currently rallying together Solvang merchants and business owners to collaborate on a safe, social-distance-accommodating lineup of events, some virtual and some in-person.
PHOTO COURTESY OF THE SOLVANG DANISH DAYS FOUNDATION

IDK Events, Solvang’s official tourism marketing consultant, is currently rallying together Solvang merchants and business owners to collaborate on a safe, social-distance-accommodating lineup of events, some virtual and some in person.

“The planning [for the weekend of Sept. 18 through 20] is just beginning, and we’ll have more to say soon,” Scott Shuemake, president of IDK Events, told the Sun.

Through this collaboration with local businesses, IDK Events hopes to organize a selection of limited-seating, Danish-inspired dinner parties, baking classes, and other events in person, as well as a variety of virtual counterparts for those who wish to enjoy the festivities from their own homes.

Future updates on the proposed 2020 lineup will be posted in the months leading up to September online at Solvang’s website (solvangusa.com). The city will also post updates through Facebook (facebook.com/solvangusa) and Instagram (@solvangusa) as well. 

Wake up Arts Editor Caleb Wiseblood when September endserr, begins—at cwiseblood@santamariasun.com.








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