We Minnesotans pride ourselves in our sturdy stoic natures. If a ten months long winter can’t keep us down, certainly a little summer storm won’t ruin our weekends.
Through the solarium windows, teared with rain, we peered at the maypole that lay on the flooded courtyard at the American Swedish Institute. Our midsommar party moved indoors, and the maypole was more wet tombstone than erect symbol of fertility. Inside the castle the festivities continued, although we didn’t find anyone singing about små grodorna (small green frogs). We did find plenty of revelry: dancing, singing, eating, and cute kids in festive Scandinavian costumes.
Back at home we loaded up on my summer version of Swedish meatballs, dilled potato and pea salad, quick pickled vegetables, and the indescribably delicious “Ma” Young’s Gustie rye bread which is sold by Gustavus Adolphus alumni during ASI’s midsommar frolicking. Our midsummer’s night dreaming was disturbed by Saturday’s storms when the power went out, and we ate our dinner by candlelight.
As Father’s Day tradition demands, on Sunday the sun returned and we ambled along the cobblestone streets at the St. Anthony Main Stone Arch Bridge Festival. I counted one dog to every ten people. They should rename the party: Stone Arch Bridge Arts and Dogs Festival. We love our dogs in Minneapolis, almost as much as we love our summer fairs and festivals.
Across Minnesota we celebrate summer for more than one magical night. Unlike our Nordic cousins, in Minneapolis the midsommar party continues with maypoles and meatballs throughout the month of June. Next week we’ll hit Minnehaha Falls for The 80th annual Svenskarnas Dag (Swedish Heritage Day).