Happy Hour at the Royal Cuckoo, March 16

Bar interior

New club president Jeanette Flodell hosted this city happy hour at the cozy Royal Cuckoo in the Mission District.

We had about 25 people show up, and the owners Deb and Paul had created two specials for us. The Pink Viking (elderflower + Akvavit), and a Carlsberg beer accompanied by an Akvavit shot.

It was a great laid-back Thursday event. Several new members showed up, which we appreciated!

Happy Hour at the Lucky Horseshoe

The board’s own Aaron Zorndorf and his band provided the entertainment for February’s City Happy Hour at the Lucky Horseshoe.

About  15 people showed up. It seemed guests enjoyed this place as it was not too crowded or too noisy. We had a couple nice big  booths where people could sit and talk. Many stayed till past we left. We taught the bar how  to SKÅL the YSC  way and took photos on the stage.

Annual Meeting & Elections

The YSC held its general Annual Meeting and elections on February 5th, at the Swedish American Hall. We had about 50 people show up. The board presented the past year, as well as the plan for the upcoming year and news about our cabins. Unfortunately the winter storms have caused a lot of damage to the dock at the Clear Lake cabin, and extensive repairs will be needed.

We had three positions on the board that were up for either reelection or replacement. Bianca Tisell and Dave Conroy were reelected for another three-year term, and the president Ulrika Lidström had decided to step down from the board. Long-time club member and previous board member Christopher Healey was elected to her empty seat. At the next Board meeting, the board will elect a new president and other officer positions.

Gordo and Rolf, quite excited about the financial report.

We also presented a brief summary of the recent member survey, sent out in January. We got some good insight into the club demographics, and what people would like to see when it comes to events and cabins. More to come on this soon, as we prepare a post-survey report to send out.

Thanks to everyone who showed up and participated in this important general meeting!

January Happy Hour in SF

Andrew Vik hosted the first club event for the year, at Harry’s Bar in SF’s Marina District on January 20th. What a turnout! Nearly 50 YSCers and friends took over Harry’s Bar in S.F. for the club’s biggest Happy Hour since pre-pandemic times. Unfortunately no photos were taken, but good times were had, that’s for sure. 🙂

Christmas Dinner at the Norwegian Club

Dinner table at the Norwegian Club

Dave Conroy and helpers did an excellent job at planning and executing this year’s Christmas dinner at the Norwegian Club. This event always sells out, and it was a packed dining room this past Saturday.

The party started in the bar downstairs with drinks and Scandinavian appetizers, such as meatballs, herring, salmon and more.

This year was Chef Pelle’s last year at the Norwegian Club. We wish him all the best in his new adventures, and we are so grateful for the many wonderful dinners he has created for us over the years. Pelle was sent off with a speech and flowers during the dinner. We don’t yet know who will replace him, but they will definitely need to study Scandinavian cuisine!

There were speeches, music with our old friend George, many Skål, and a moment of remembering our dear member Carsten Johansen, who recently passed away. He was a huge part of the club for decades and will be missed by all who knew him. He got two extra loud Skåls tonight.

We held the usual raffle, where Brett Petersen won the grand prize of a free weekend in the Tahoe cabin. And as is tradition, the “find the almond in the rice pudding” game, where three winners got a marzipan pig.

After dinner, a large group of people put on comfier shoes and warm coats, and headed down to “Uncle John’s Tree”, the massive Monterey Cypress next to the Rec & Park office in the Golden Gate Park. (If anyone wants to learn more about Uncle John’s Tree, here is an article about its history!)

George and his guitar provided the songs and Christmas cheer for the group to start dancing around the tree. This is usually met with curiosity and amusement from people passing by, and it happens every now and then that they too join in!

And once the dance is over, we come back to the club, and enjoy a last drink or two before it’s time to call it a night. Another Christmas dinner for the books. Thank you Dave, and everyone who helped make it successful!!

Lucia at Swedish American Hall

Lucia Choir singing on stage

Few things made us happier this year than welcoming back our longstanding Lucia tradition!

Erdmann Rogge and an entire battalion of helpers worked hard to make this event a success, and we are so incredibly thankful for the effort they put in. Many of us like to think we’ve put the pandemic behind us, but as the planning of this event started gearing up, it was obvious that the world has not yet bounced back to pre-pandemic ways. Getting a choir turned out to be an extraordinarily tricky challenge, as key musicians and leaders were no longer available. In the end, Erde and his team managed to score not just one, but two choirs for us!

The A Capella group “the High C’s” sang beautiful carols
Jonas Norberg leading the beautiful Lucia choir

For those of us who grew up with the Lucia tradition, no matter where you are in the world (even in the tropics), seeing the light crown and hearing the first few notes of the Lucia song is like flicking a “holiday spirit” switch. Although it is not an ancient tradition in Scandinavia, where the original 4th century legend about the Sicilian saint Santa Lucia has merged with Nordic folklore, but is so deeply rooted in our backbone.

Jonas’ version of “Oh holy night” gives you goosebumps. Another instant holiday spirit trigger.

The Lucia event drew in both old and new members, and we were especially happy to see our old (for real!) friend, and life-time honorary member, Lisa Wiborg return. Lisa has been with the club since the start, almost 75 years ago, and it was wonderful to see the joy on people’s faces when they discovered her again sitting in the front row, dressed in her Swedish “folkdräkt”. She has been missed during the past few years!

As has been tradition for MANY years now, Lisa presented the Lucia with a pearl necklace.

Santa also made an appearance! Nobody saw him take notes of what the children told him they want for Christmas, so he’d better not get them mixed up!

And thanks to all Santa’s elves, we had glögg, saffron buns, kringler and gingerbread cookies to enjoy during the performances.

The Glögg team.
JoAnna Schull, our MC of the evening
Solveig Barnes, Vice President of the YSC, welcomed everybody
Jeanette Flodell told the history behind the tradition of Lucia

Gløgg Hygge in the Park

Scandinavians enjoying warm glögg in the park

The annual Gløgg Hygge reception at the Presidio parade grounds was another resounding success.
To help us into the holiday season the skies broke and blue sky prevailed after some serious rain just hours before. It was chilly but the YSC Gløgg made being outside with fellow members a fun and memorable occasion. About 37 members came to share the holiday spirit. The Gløgg and hot chocolate lasted til just before dark. Kringle from Copenhagen bakery made the hygge complete.
As a reminder for any YSC event , it is super important to sign up so proper provisions are on hand. Our barrel of Gløgg was just enough, but not enough…

Cheers to the season and may all your families find the Hygge!

City Happy Hour, CC’s Cocktail Lounge, November 10

Solveig hosted this fun happy hour in the Marina. We had a good turnout of about 30 people, and even held a raffle!

The night was busy so we only managed to get one photo! We made friends with the great bartender, who had Scandinavian connections, and with CC, the owner of the lounge, who made little bites for us and passed them around!

Halloween Bonfire on Ocean Beach

Group at bonfire

What a wonderful evening we had at Stein’s bonfire event last night! The weather showed itself from its best side. No fog, no clouds, almost no wind, and a stunning sunset! Some joined in costume, and a lot of people brought yummy stuff to share at the table.

Thanks to Stein for organizing, and Jeanette for helping with snacks and drinks. We had so much fun we didn’t leave until the cops made their usual rounds to see that the fires are put out. Thanks to everyone who helped clean up!!

Happy Halloween! 🎃