Anti-hunger breakfast

Nordic American Thanksgiving Breakfast celebrates 30 years of fellowship and charity

Photo courtesy of Second Harvest heartland Second Harvest Heartland strives to end hunger in 59 counties throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin though a network of dedicated volunteers.

Photo courtesy of Second Harvest heartland
Second Harvest Heartland strives to end hunger in 59 counties throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin though a network of dedicated volunteers.

Leslee Lane Hoyum
Rockford, Minn.

Thirty years ago, Sons of Norway and Lawrence O. Hauge had a brainstorm: bring together the Nordic community to give thanks for their freedom, faith, family, and friends. Thus the Nordic American Thanksgiving Breakfast was born. Each year, between 800 and 900 people gather for breakfast and to celebrate life.

This year’s program is outstanding. The Gustavus Adolphus Choir of St. Peter, Minn., under the direction of Dr. Gregory Aune, and the Barbary Coast Dixieland Band will perform. Speakers will include Andrew Zimmern, chef and host of the Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods, Kevin King, well-known local author and storyteller, and the Rev. Ruth MacKenzie, minister of worship arts at First Universalist Church of Minneapolis. Senior journalist and former WCCO TV news anchor Don Shelby will serve as master of ceremonies.

The early morning get-together also allows guests to give back to the community by supporting two local charities. This year’s beneficiaries are Second Harvest Heartland and Minnesota Military Family Foundation. Second Harvest Heartland strives to end hunger in 59 counties throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin through a network of dedicated partners, volunteers, and donors. The second charity, Minnesota Military Family Foundation, is a not-for-profit, community-supported fund that provides financial grants to military families during times of extraordinary financial hardship.

The thirtieth breakfast is on Tuesday, Nov. 25, in the Grand Ballroom of the DoubleTree Hotel, 7800 Normandale Boulevard, Bloomington, with seating beginning at 6:30 a.m. Tickets are $25 per person or $250 per 10-person reserved table. Students pay $20 per person. Reservations are required and may be made online at www.sonsofnorway.com or by calling (612) 821-4640 no later than Wednesday, Nov. 19. Tickets will not be sold at the door.

This article originally appeared in the Oct. 31, 2014, issue of the Norwegian American Weekly. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (800) 305-0271.

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