Have you had to chance to check out the Norwegian laft Hus? If not, then now is the time. It is a small quaint cultural museum located in Heritage Square directly south of the Red Deer Museum and Art Gallery.
An authentic replica of a 17th-century log farmhouse from the Numedal district in Norway, it captivates your imagination, with its sod roof, decorative “sval” or porch and, of course, the little gnomes perched out front to Velkommen (welcome you in). Once inside, you will be impressed by an array of beautiful artifacts, portraying Norwegian life like the kubbestol, a chair made from a tree trunk dating back to the Viking age, or the communal ale bowl passed around the table during celebrations. Their traditional dress, the Bunad, is also on display depicting some of Norway’s different regions by their style and colour.
Their Butikk or Museum Shop carries a wide range of Norwegian gifts wares ranging from homemade items by the ladies of the Laft Hus to Christmas decorations, anyone for shopping. They also house a library of rich resources about Norway’s culture and history and offer workshops on everything from making Hardanger embroidery, Lutefisk (a codfish dish), or perhaps the Nisse, which is a gnome and a symbol of Christmas. Legend says that on Christmas Eve, the Nisse was given a bowl of porridge as a reward for guarding the farm. If you forgot to set out porridge, the Nisse would play tricks or engage in mischief. These past stories are part of the Myths and folklore and are a significant part of Norwegian Culture.
The grounds surrounding the Laft Hus are steeped in history and several historical buildings from the Presbyterian Church Steeple to their oldest building, the Stevenson-Hall Block. The Wanderers-notebook put together a youtube video in 2018 focusing on Historic Red Deer Heritage Square and its stories.
The Laft Hus is a little taste of Norway dedicated to the Norwegian pioneers who settled in and around Central Alberta and is the perfect Quaint Place to visit as you Explore Red Deer’s Backyard.
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