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  • Local 4 WHBF

    Celebrate Midsommar in Bishop Hill

    By Sharon Wren,


    Welcome summer the Swedish way at the 2024 Bishop Hill Midsommar Music Festival on Saturday June 22. This free, family friendly event includes free concerts in the park, a Swedish Maypole celebration and more. Attendees should bring lawn chairs.

    The festival celebrates Midsommar, one of the two most popular holidays in Sweden (the other is Christmas) Celebrating Midsommar is an ancient practice that dates back to pagan rituals to welcome summer and the season of fertility. In Sweden, Midsommar festivals have been taking place for at least 500 years. People in Sweden welcomed summertime by decorating their homes and farm tools with foliage and raising Maypoles to dance around.

    Concerts at the village park gazebo start at 10 a.m. This year’s lineup includes Black Hawk Pipes and Drums, Sarah and the Underground, Orion Community Band, Jazz on the Side and the Norwegian Bachelor Farmers. Visitors can decorate the Maypole with flowers and join the procession immediately following the concerts at 4 p.m. The procession will begin in the park and end at the Colony School where everyone can join in the Maypole dancing and enjoy refreshments provided by the Bishop Hill Vasa Lodge.

    Author Jannifer Stevens Powelson will sign her books from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Prairie Arts Center, 203 North Bishop Hill Street. She is marking the upcoming release and launch of Summer Solstice, the ninth book in the Nature Station Mystery Series. Click here for more about her books.

    The Vasa National Archives will provide a Midsummer Respite a block south of the park featuring drinks, snacks and a make-and-take clay sculpture station. Participants can view exhibits, some light refreshments and make a clay sculpture to take home. The Vasa National Archives will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

    Click here or call (309) 927-3899 for directions or more information.

    Copyright 2024 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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