The 56th Grand Lodge Biennial Daughters of Norway Convention is coming to Kitsap County with a special stop in “Little Norway.”
The Daughters of Norway is the female offshoot of the Sons of Norway organization and is in its 113th year of operation.
“During the years of really big immigration from Norway, there were a lot of Norwegian immigrants that kind of grouped together in where they settled, and the women decided that they would want their own organization, and it was pretty much started on the West Coast, which was unusual at the time,” said Nancy Wood, one of the organizers of the convention.
As its title suggests this convention is supposed to happen every two years, and like many others, this event was supposed to occur last year, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic it was postponed.
Each year lodges in different areas bid for a chance to host the convention. Along with Poulsbo, Port Townsend and Olympia are hosting this one.
Each of the Daughters of Norway Lodges is named for a Norwegian or Scandinavian heroine. For example, the lodge in Poulsbo is named after Nina Grieg, a famous Norweigan singer from the late 19th to early 20th century.
The theme of this year’s convention is “Sisters Sail the Salish Sea.” Roughly 230 Scandinavian women from eight states will be arriving in Kitsap County July 21 and participate in a plethora of events, including a tour of Poulsbo July 23.
During the tour, the women will be clad in traditional Scandinavian attire and Bunads while Scandinavian music will be played in the gazebo at Muriel Iverson Willams Waterfront park.
The Daughters of Norway is a nonprofit organization for women age 13 and older with ties to Nordic heritage and a desire to learn more about their culture.
Prior to Friday’s events in Poulsbo, the Daughters of Norway will participate in events in Bremerton and other parts of the county.
“Like a lot of these kinds of organizations we are having trouble keeping our memberships up. Most of our members are of mature age, and we are looking for young members to keep the heritage, the customs and traditions going,” Wood said.