Sunday, September 11, 2011

Decoding—and Creating—the Primstav

Have you read "Decoding the Primstav" in the July issue of Viking? In it, Keith Homstad presents a history and explanation of the primstav, Norway's medieval calendar stick. Before the days of printed calendars or clocks, the simple but highly accurate primstav served as a religious guide and farmers almanac for seven centuries.

Homstad is the president of Nordmarka 1-585 in Northfield, of which I'm also a member. Last night Nordmarka members gathered to try their hand at making their own primstavs. We met over the supper hour and enjoyed snacking on hjerte vafler and meatballs while Homstad (pictured below on the left) led us in the activity.

If you'd like to learn more about primstavs, check out the July issue of Viking, where you'll find instructions for making your own on page 24. Homstad encourages readers to personalize their primstavs to include their own "red letter days," such as holidays and important family events. In addition to a fun lodge activity, it sounds like a wonderful Christmas gift idea to me!

Amy Boxrud is editor of Viking magazine. She lives with her family in Northfield, Minn., where she’s a member of Nordmarka 1-585.

1 comment:

Keith Homstad said...

Yea! That was a FUN cultural heritage event - I can hardly wait to see how the 20+ individual PRIMSTAVS turn out. If you zoom in on my photo you'll see that my T shirt says, "Stikklestad 1030", I got it at the interpretive center in Stikklestad, Norway. Since I don't have a PRIMSTAV T-shirt, this was the closest I could get to an ethnic one.