Thursday, October 20, 2011

Nordic Day in D.C. Schools

By Ed Bruske
aka The Slow Cook

Coinciding perfectly with my recent school food fact finding mission to Sweden, the D.C. Public Schools next week are holding a "Nordic Day," supported by several local embassies. As well as a menu of classic nordic foods for all 45,000 DCPS students, the embassies will be providing musical entertainment and other activities at individual schools.

Here's the skinny:

WHAT: The Embassies of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, together with the D.C. Public Schools’ Office of Food & Nutrition Services and the DC Embassy Adoption Program, will bring Nordic food to all 45,000 D.C. Public School students at 125 DC schools on Nordic Food Day, DCPS’ first ever celebration of international food and culture.

The purpose of Nordic Food Day is to expose students to new, nutritious, appetizing foods in school while encouraging them to recreate these recipes with their parents or guardians at home. A Nordic cook book with easy do-it-yourself recipes will be distributed to DCPS students on the day of the event.

Beginning on October 25th, Nordic “Food Mentors” sponsored by Nordic Innovation will be visiting 20 schools to introduce DCPS students to Nordic culture and culinary tradition. On October 26th, authentic Nordic dishes, including Swedish meatballs, Norwegian salmon, Finnish rye bread and Icelandic inspired Skyr, along with Danish inspired open-faced sandwiches, will be served to all students for breakfast, lunch, and supper. Menu items will be prepared by five Nordic chef apprentices who will be visiting D.C. as winners of a Nordic culinary competition.

Four elementary schools which have been paired with the Nordic countries through the D.C. Embassy Adoption Program will have special events take place during lunchtime on Nordic Food Day.

A reception will be held following the day’s events at the residence of the Norwegian Ambassador. A fundraiser for DCPC schools to bring more salad bars into the schools will be held at the Danish Embassy with chef Trina Hahnemann and the band ‘Suspicious Package’.

Nordic Day is the inaugural event for DCPS’ International Food Program. Four food days will be co-sponsored by D.C. embassies annually to introduce students to new tastes and cultural experiences, and to lay the foundation for increased cross-cultural exchange.

WHO: HRH Prince Daniel of Sweden, Ministers, Mayor Vincent Gray, Ambassadors of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, Nordic celebrity chefs, Janey Thornton, USDA Deputy Under Secretary for Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services and Jeffrey Mills, DCPS Food & Nutrition Services Director.


· Nordic Innovation



Kenilworth Elementary School

Embassy of Denmark

1300 44th Street NE

Lunch: tbd

* Chef Trina Hahnemann will share Danish food and talk about eating healthy and sharing a meal at home with your family

*Get your photo taken with a real live ‘Tivoli Guard’

*Piano music, face painting and lots of fun the happy Danish way!

Media Contact:

Pernille Florin Elbech

Senior Advisor, Public Diplomacy & Press


O: 202.797.5362

C: 202.320.0098

River Terrace Elementary School

420 34th Street NE

Embassy of Finland

Lunch: 12:00-1:00PM

*Live music -Finnish singer Meri Siirala & saxophonist Anders Lundegård who are going to sing together with the students in Finnish

* Demo and food tasting by Ambassador's chef

* Lively information about Finnish schools & school food; healthy snack plate

* A short Moomin movie

Media Contact:

Jenni Jarventaus, Media Relations Coordinator


O: 202. 298.5821
C: 202.615.5811

Brookland Education Campus

1401 Michigan Avenue NE

Embassy of Iceland and Embassy of Norway

Lunch: 12:00-1:10PM

*Icelandic Jazz musician Björn Thoroddsen and fiddler Vilde Aasland

*Giveaways from both embassies

*Visitors from both embassies, some of them wearing national costumes

*Food from both Norway and Iceland

Media Contact:

Pia Ulrikke Dahl
Cultural and Information Officer

O: 202.469.3977
C: 202.344.6089

Miner Elementary School

601 15th Street NE

Embassy of Sweden

Lunch: 11:00 AM -1:00PM

*HRH Prince Daniel of Sweden, Mayor Vincent Gray, Sweden’s Minister of Social Affairs and the Ambassador of Sweden

*Cultural Activities offered to the children include tasting station, Pippi Longstocking photo booth, educational & craft station and musicians
*All children at Miner Elementary will be involved in the program, including a tour of the school and a Glee Club performance

Media Contact:

Larilyn André


O: 202-467-2644

C: 202-213-2718

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