Chairman's Message

Greetings, friends of the Smoky Valley,

Here on the plains of Kansas, our winter wheat has been harvested. Fireworks and community celebrations recently reminded us to be grateful for the freedoms we enjoy as Americans. And summertime activities fill many of our days and evenings. As it has been for every odd year dating back decades, the Summer of 2015 also marks the time to gear up for another Svensk Hyllningsfest. This years’ festival will be held on October 9th and 10th, and your committee is working hard to make this one extra special. It already has a particular significance, in the fact that we will be celebrating the 75th anniversary of the festival! It is hard to imagine that 75 years have gone by since the brainstorm of Dr. William Holwerda took root, becoming a tradition that we in the Valley cherish.

I often think back to a place in time, and try to put myself in the shoes of the people that surveyed the land here in the valley for possible settlement; the year being 1868, when people traveled to the grand prairie in search of fertile ground, and unlimited opportunity. I can’t possibly imagine the looks on these people’s faces when they reached the Smoky Valley. In my mind, I can imagine a hushed looked of amazement at the beauty that surrounded them. One of those moments where a simple look into each other’s eyes signaled, that this indeed was the place. And here we are 147 years later, getting ready to celebrate that vision that those early Swedish pioneers had.

The beauty remains, and even today, we see Lindsborg transforming itself more and more into a vibrant community. A drive down Main Street attests to this progress. Our city has been diligently working on new infrastructure to aesthetically brighten the downtown area, but also help make it more “cutting edge” with improvements to utility lines and sidewalks. There also would not be a downtown, if it weren’t for all the forward-thinking business owners who have helped make Lindsborg what it is today. Our Ad Hoc business group has been instrumental in helping make this renewal possible. They are not simply looking out for their own interests, but strive to make Lindsborg a well-rounded town that offers services in every aspect of daily life. What an exciting time to live in such a wonderful community!

As we inch closer to this years’ festival, stability-wise, the Svensk Hyllningsfest committee is in good shape. Our committee is full, and many new ideas are being discussed to make this festival memorable. However, improving the experience not only takes a lot of planning and work, but financial support as well. This is where you come in, as a supporter of Svensk Hyllningsfest 2015, with our theme being “Diamond Dala” for our 75th anniversary. We are rounding up the “Dala Herd” again where there are several levels of monetary support from which to choose. Every supporter will receive recognition on our website, as well as in our festival program. We would love your support! All support forms need to be returned to the Svensk Hyllningsfest committee by August 15, 2015 in order for you to be listed in the program.

Thank you in advance for your support, and we look forward to painting the Smoky Valley Swedish blue and gold again in October!

On behalf of your Svensk Hyllningsfest committee,

Doug Malm
Chairman, Svensk Hyllningsfest Committee