The Scandinavian Midsummer Festival Court consists of Miss Scandinavia 2017, junior and senior princesses sponsored by the Danish Society, Finnish Brotherhood, Sons of Norway and VASA Swedish Lodge, chaperones, and a crown bearer. These young women and young man serve as festival ambassadors to visit local lodges, churches, and services groups to spread the word of the Scandinavian Midsummer Festival. They also travel to out-of-town festivals to participate in parades. At 7 PM on Friday, June 15, at the Queen Coronation, the princesses and crown bearer will speak about their Scandinavian heritage. A panel of judges will select a senior princess to reign as Miss Scandinavia 2018. Soloists from the community will sing the national songs of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. The Nordic Viking Dancers will perform traditional folk dances. Afterwards there is a Torchlight Procession to the Bonfire where everyone can throw a hex in the fire to rid oneself of bad luck for the year. The evening will continue with a family-friendly Queen’s Ball with live music by Scandinavian Country. Come early at 5 P.M. to enjoy live entertainment featuring the musicians from Scandinavia.
Miss Scandinavia 2017
In 2017, Megan Schacher of Gearhart represented the Finnish lodge. She finds all the festivals joyous and uplifting and says they are an experience one never forgets because they connect you to your ancestors and heritage. She loves the food presented at the festival and participates in the dance group and helps in the Finnish booths. Megan likes to meet new people and hear their stories and says that representing the festival as a court member for a second year has improved her public speaking skills. She’s always known that her mother was Finnish but recently her family learned through DNA testing that her father is also part Scandinavian!
Miss Finland 2018
Kourtney Tischer is from Knappa and is sponsored by the Finnish Brotherhood. Kourtney will proudly wear the same Finnish costume her mother wore in 1994 when she was Senior Miss Finland. Kourtney’s ancestors came from the Swedish part of Finland and some also lived in Norway and Denmark. She’s very appreciative that the Scandinavian Festival keeps Scandinavian culture and traditions alive in the local area.
Miss Norway 2018
Kaitlyn Bakkensen is from Scappoose. She has an early memory of her first festival at age six when she was kissed by the troll! At the time it was scary but later she realized the troll was one of her dad’s friends and could laugh at the experience and feel good about it. She also enjoyed the time her whole family visited the festival to support her cousin who was Miss Finland at the time. By participating in the court, Kaitlyn hopes to hear more about her own heritage and also more about the traditions of other Scandinavian nationalities. Katilyn’s grandfather, Joe Bakkensen, had parents from Norway and Denmark and Katilyn has visited the area where some of them came from.
Miss Sweden 2018
Madalyn Hellberg is from Camas, Washington. Her grandparents are Swedish, Danish, Finnish and Norwegian. Madalyn attended her first festival as a baby and was Junior Miss Sweden in 2008. She’s glad to participate in the court again this year so she can increase her knowledge of her Swedish heritage, gain public speaking experience, and make new friendships.
Senior Court Chaperone 2018
Michelle Devos lives in Warrenton where she’s employed by the Warrenton Hammond School District. She has family in Norway that has visited the area before and that will return next summer. Devos has good memories of the Op Tog (walking parade) when it was held in downtown Astoria and especially enjoyed the 2016 festival when her daughter Megan was crowned Miss Scandinavia.
Junior Miss Iceland 2018
Holly is from Hammond and has great-grandparents who are Norwegian, Icelandic and Swedish. She learned her heritage from her parents and grandparents and looks forward to the Midsummer Festival so she can dance, participate in the Barnefest (children’s activity area), and make more friends.
Junior Miss Sweden 2018
Marlie lives in Astoria and is sponsored by VASA Astor Lodge #215. She enjoys the Queen’s Ball and Barnefest (children’s activities) at the festival and looks forward to participating in court activities like riding a float in the parades. Marlie claims Scandinavian ancestry from her ancestors who came from Norway and Finland, but mostly Sweden.
Junior Miss Finland 2018
Junior Miss Finland Cheyenne attended last year’s festival for the first time and especially enjoyed the music and the dancing. Even though her sister was Junior Miss Finland last year, Cheyenne asked her grandmother Shellie to make her a new costume this year - no hand-me-downs for her. Cheyenne looks forward to representing Finland at the festival and visiting all the lodges and organizations that host the Court and often give the girls prizes and treats.
Junior Miss Denmark 2018
Arianna lives in Naselle, Washington. She’s attended previous festivals with her grandparents and aunt and loved the dancing and the food. She hopes to learn more about her own heritage by participating on this year’s festival court.
Junior Miss Norway 2018
Sofia of Astoria is sponsored by the Nidaros Lodge Sons of Norway. Like the other junior princesses, she’s been highly impressed at past festivals by the delicious Scandinavian food offered and the amazing dancing. Sofia is looking forward to meeting new friends and learning more about her community and heritage as she participates in court activities. Her great-great grandparents emigrated from Norway and settled in Astoria in the 1920s. Sofia’s maternal grandfather emigrated from Italy and both Sofia and her brother Viggo have names that are spelled identical in Norwegian and Italian. Heritage is important in this family!
Crown Bearer 2018
Ty is the only male on the 2018 Scandinavian Midsummer Festival Court. His mother is Junior Court Chaperone Angie Cereghino and Ty is a second year member of the Nordic Viking Dancers. With his family, he has been involved in all aspects of the festival from setup to clean up, dancing, eating pea soup (a Swedish specialty) and aebelskiver (Danish doughnuts), and helping with the Troll Run.
Junior Court Chaperone 2018
Angie Cereghino is an Astoria native and she and her family have been involved in the festival for as long as she can remember. She enjoys being part of the local Scandinavian community and has found lifelong friends there. Cereghino feels that her heritage displays itself in her family life through the Scandinavian work ethic, value of community and her faith. Cereghino is Danish, Swedish and Norwegian and credits her mother Bonnie Fisher for keeping Scandinavian traditions present in her family’s daily life. Cereghino was Junior Miss Sweden in 1984, Miss Sweden in 1994, and is a member of VASA Swedish Lodge.