Activities and Culture

This page provides information about:

  • Norwegian Culture programs
  • Culture Medals for Music 
  • Sports Medal Program
  • Other Activities

Norwegian Culture Program & Groups

Most meetings provide an opportunity to learn or to improve upon a Norwegian cultural skill.  Medals can be earned in many cultural skills. Click here to see the Norwegian cultural skills medals. Polar Star cultural groups so far include cooking, knitting, literature, hardanger, and ornamental woodcarving. 

Sons of Norway Culture Medals for Language
The focus in 2020 was on helping members earn Part 1 of the Sons of Norway Culture medal for Language. A Norwegian language class was being offered, taught by native speaker Inger Langsholt and was available via Zoom on Friday mornings from 10:00 to 12:00. Those classes are currently suspended.
In its place, the DuoLingo app is highly recommended.
the Cultural Director for more information and details.

Sons of Norway Culture Medals for Literature   
Another focus in 2020 is on helping our members earn Part 1, 2, and/or 3 of the Sons of Norway Culture Medal for Literature. We will be reading books written by Norwegian and Norwegian-American authors. 2020 will be another year of the Jolabokaflod. Every month members are encouraged to bring their favorite book (and favorite chocolated) to the Polar Star meeting to share with the group. 

Sons of Norway Culture Medals for Cooking   
Focus in 2017 and 2018 was on helping members earn Part 3 of the Sons of Norway Norwegian Culture medal for Cooking, A continuing focus for 2020 will be helping members earn any cooking medal Parts 1, 2, and/or 3.    

Sons of Norway Culture Medals for Knitting
A continuing focus is on helping members earn Parts 1, 2, and/or 3 of the Sons of Norway Culture Medal for Traditional Norwegian Knitting. We will participate in the American Heart Association's Little Hats for Big Hearts project.   

Sons of Norway Culture Medals for Genealogy   
The focus in 2016 was on helping our members earn the Sons of Norway Culture Medal for Genealogy. The Polar Star Lodge Fantily Tree Fair was held in April 2016. 

Sons of Norway Culture Medals for Stamp Collecting  
2015 was devoted to helping our members earn the Sons of Norway Culture Medal for Stamp Collecting. Before each general meeting, the Polar Star Frimerke Klub (Stamp Club) met at 1:00 pm  to trade and exchange ideas to complete medal requirements. Our stamp expert, Arthur Andersen advised members on all aspects of stamp collecting.

Sons of Norway Culture Medals for Music  
2014 was devoted to helping our members earn Sons of Norway Culture Medals for Music. At each general meeting, we learned and listened to music that, "introduced the richness and variety of Norwegian music from its roots in times unknown through some of its myriad expressions in present day".
Part I:  Folk Music: Roots of Norwegian Music   
Part 2:  The 19th Century: Edvard Grieg and Contemporaries   
Part 3:  The 20th and 21st Centuries: Composers, Performers, Conductors

Sports Medal Program 
Sons of Norway recognizes the importance of healthful activities not just to prolong your life, but to improve the very quality of your life. This Sports Medal Program, which originated in Norway, will improve your attitude as well as your physical well-being.

Something for Everyone 
No matter how young or old you are, and no matter what your present physical condition, the Sports Medal Program offers a fitness plan for you. With doctor's advice, you can determine the appropriate level. Then you are assigned point or mileage requirements for medal qualifications that are within your reach. The program is great because you don't need to be a natural athlete-the only one you are really competing with is yourself. 

Different Levels, Different Medals 
As you reach each objective, you will be awarded different grades of sports medals. Begin in pursuit of the Bronze, then work yourself up to Silver, Gold, and eventually Enamel. You can then work toward the Idrettshelt [ee-dretts-hellt], the sports hero pin, which is the 5th level within any sports medal category and is earned by doubling the point/mileage value of the enamel level in that category.  The highest level, the outstanding achievement award, is the Hederspris [hay-dersh-prees], earned by completing bronze, silver, gold and enamel levels in any three sports medal categories.

There is no longer a fee for the pins, and only members can take part in this program). Set your own pace-your program can be for just one medal.

Polar Star-specific sports challenges are also offered.


Other Activities

Annual Høstfest - Held every November. Traditional food and craft demonstrations; delicious homemade Norwegian treats such as smørbrod, snitter, and rundstykker (open faced sandwiches).

Annual Julefest - Held every December, with traditional Christmas carols, foods, and crafts.

Annual Norge Ski Jump Tournament - International event for over 100 years.  Held the last weekend in January in Fox River Grove, IL on Saturday (Junior and K70) and Sunday (K70 US Cup and Five Hills Tournament). Contact the Social Director for information. 

Barnebirke - Polar Star joins other lodges in providing home baked cookies for the annual Barnebirke - a Sons of Norway ski race for children age 3-13, held in Hayward, Wisconsin every year since 1991. Polar Star members bring cookies to the February lodge meeting. The cookies must be packed in sturdy, non-returnable containers and labeled with Polar Star Lodge, the type of cookies, and the number of dozens of cookies enclosed. The cookies are greatly appreciated by the race participants!

Book Club - contact the Book Club Leader for information about current books and meetings.

Penny Auction - Held every February; bring your own treasures and go home with other treasures!

Scholarships - refer to Scholarships.

Tubfrim - Supported by Sons of Norway, Tubfrim was a Norwegian charitable organization originally started in 1928 to help fight tuberculosis. When tuberculosis became no longer the threat it once was, Tubfrim instead resold the cancelled stamps and donated the proceeds to help children and youth with disabilities and special needs. Tubfrim program was discontinued in 2022.

District 5 will be conducting a similar program, benefiting two worthy U.S. charitable service organizations. Our Polar Star lodge has chosen to support Stamps for the Wounded. Art Andersen will lead our efforts.   

  • Stamps for the Wounded in Dunn Loring, Virginia (promotes stamp collecting by veterans as a hobby).    
  • Sisters of the Holy Cross, Notre Dame, Indiana (to help with their Ministry with the Poor Fund).  

Please clip canceled stamps from envelopes, leaving at least 1/4 inch (and preferably 1/2 inch), around the edges of each stamp. Be sure to take the time to cut the stamps properly. Stamps cannot be used if they are torn, have extra layers of envelope behind them, or are on a string of multiple stamps (such as 3 stamps in a row without the spacing). Non-profit or bulk stamps also can't be used. Stamps from any country and all styles of stamps are accepted. However, please do not submit stamps with U.S. flags, star ribbon, Liberty Bell, US nonprofit stamps, or stamps from fundraising appeals. For envelopes or postcards that are over 40-50 years old, please submit the entire envelope or postcard.    

Please bring your stamps to any monthly meeting and leave them on the table by the sign-in guest book. Arthur Andersen is Polar Star’s stamp coordinator.  

Activity Volunteer Hours - Each member is asked to use the Polar Star Activity Volunteer Hours Tracking Sheet to track volunteer time spent during the month on projects organized by Sons of Norway at a lodge, district or International level; as well as any volunteer community service hours either on behalf or in the name of Sons of Norway.  

At each lodge meeting, members turn in their completed Individual Activity Tracking Sheets to the the Lodge Secretary and pick up new monthly forms as needed. Alternatively, members may turn in their completed sheet at the end of the calendar year.

The Lodge Secretary compiles the total and sends to Sons of Norway International for retention of its tax exempt status and to facilitate lobbying on behalf of Fraternal benefit societies.  

For more information about this year's activities, click on Meetings and Events.

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Polar Star Lodge # 5-472 - Sons of Norway