Let’s make the most of our summer!

“Beautiful days, brilliant nights!”

Photo: Oda Hveem / VisitNorway
Hip, hip, hooray, it’s summer! Editor-in-chief Lori Ann Reinhall encourages you to make the most of it!

Dear readers and friends,

Summer is here, a time of the year that we all cherish. It’s a time for getting out in the great outdoors, a time for getting together with family and friends, and for many, a time for striking out on new travel adventures. And, of course, it goes to say that with a little caution, all of this is possible again this year.

With many of you traveling to Norway again, there are still concerns about travel logistics, pandemic regulations, flights delays, and such. We wish you all the best on your travels, that you will stay healthy, as you enjoy exploring new adventures. Summer is somehow such an exciting and uplifting, inspirational time.

But at the time of writing this to you, our hearts are laden with grief. This year’s midsummer night’s dream turned into a nightmare with an act of terrorism in Oslo. A gunman opened fire on a celebration in a gay bar, killing two people and injuring 21 others. Our hearts go out to the victims’ families and friends and the people of Norway, as they mourn collectively as a nation. We, too, condemn this senseless act of violence and intolerance. May love and understanding, light and life, always prevail.

With this issue, we would, above all, like to you think about others who are less fortunate. For many, especially underprivileged children—many of them minorities—summer can create a void to be filled. They will not be going on any exciting vacations with their parents this year. In fact, they are left without adult supervision for most of the day. This can not only lead to boredom but downright trouble.

As you will learn from this issue’s opinion piece, we do not have a hegemony on childhood poverty in the Western world here in the United States. These problems also exist in affluent countries such as Norway. This is simply not acceptable anywhere; we owe all of our children and youth a better foundation in life. Here at The Norwegian American, we urge you to support organizations such as Save the Children that work to better the situations of our young people.

There is so much we can do for children, both on a public and personal level. Grandparents play such an integral role in our society, and I hope that many of you will be able to spend time together as a family this summer. And not everything needs to be expensive either. Simply taking a walk is great activity to pass the time and do something positive for a young person’s development. If you know your own town’s history, you don’t need to go to Oslo to take a historical walk. Like Tove Andersson does in this issue, you can think about the names of street signs right at home. And as Victoria Hofmo points out in her article about summer activities in New York City, there are many public parks to explore, and they are found just about everywhere you go.

A time for reading

For me personally, summer is time for reading, especially since we get a publishing break in August. I have more time to relax with a good book that I haven’t had time to plow through during the year. An entire stack of is waiting for me, and I can’t wait to read them. Have you also made your summer reading list?

You might want to look back through some of our book reviews, since this is good time to deepen your knowledge about Norway and Norwegian culture. Please note that while it’s been a tradition for our staff to provide summer reading recommendations to you with this issue, we are doing things a little bit different this year. We’ve chosen to focus on children’s books in this issue’s Barne­blad as a way of bringing families together and bringing entertainment and education to young ones. An excursion to your local public library is a great idea and reading together is valuable fun. Of course, if you can afford to buy a book for a child, we think this is a wonderful investment. They will treasure it, and you may bond together in a special way.

Exploring Norway—in Switzerland!

All this said, we’re not ignoring summer travel with the issue, as our travel editor, Cynthia Elyce Rubin, shares highlights from her recent trip to Switzerland. Yes, we know, Switzerland is not a Scandinavian country, but as you will learn, there are some very interesting connections between Switzerland and Norway.

Moving ahead

With our publishing break in August, it is also a time for planning here at the newspaper. Plans for our holiday issues are already underway, and we are filling out the editorial calendar for the rest of the year and into 2023. If you have any feedback about our content, this is a good time to touch base. You can write to me directly at loriann@na-weekly.com. 

We are also currently in a phase of strategic planning with the team at Norway House. Without saying too much, I can share that some exciting events are on the horizon.

I often get asked by our readers how we are doing. There I can report that we are holding steady, but as has been the case for many years, more growth in our subscriber base is needed. We are seeing increasing costs, and we simply think The Norwegian American is too good to be kept a secret. Please help us spread the word. As recently pointed out, at $70 for print and digital access, this paper is very good deal!

Another way to help is to set your subscriber account to auto-renew, which saves us the overhead of sending out renewal notices and processing checks. It also saves us valuable time, so we can focus on what we do best: bringing quality content to you. I you need help managing your account online, just give us a call, and we’ll help you get things set up (remember to leave a message since we’re still operating a remote office).

At that, I would like to wish you many hours of happy reading. Let’s make the most of our summer!

Lori Ann

This article originally appeared in the July 8, 2022, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.

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Lori Ann Reinhall

Lori Ann Reinhall, editor-in-chief of The Norwegian American, is a multilingual journalist and cultural ambassador based in Seattle. She is the president of the Seattle-Bergen Sister City Association, and she serves on the boards of several Nordic organizations.