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Jordbruksdagarna is back in Bishop Hill

– You don’t have to say “Jordbruksdagarna” to know what it means: food, music, dancing, games, crafts, and much more at Bishop Hill.  The annual fall festival (pronounced yord-brooks-DAH-ga-na) takes place Saturday September 23 and Sunday September 24, 2017.   As always, there will be a variety of traditional craft demonstrations in the village park during the 46th Jordbruksdagarna (Swedish for “earth work days”). Artisans will make rope, process flax, forge metal, and more. Vendors will also sell farm produce, pumpkins, pioneer popcorn, antiques, primitives, and much more in the park from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days.   

At the Bjorklund Hotel from noon to 4 p.m. each day, there will be demonstrations on how to press and cook sorghum and bake hard tack. Visitors can try their hand at shelling corn, making bricks, pressing cider, and making a cornhusk doll.  

Performances in the park include Hammer and Pick at noon and 2 p.m., and the Nordic Dancers at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday.  The Burns Boosters 4-H club will host a petting zoo both Saturday and Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Old-fashioned children’s games will also be conducted in the park at 2 p.m. each day.  By the children’s games, the VASA Archives will have a seed saving activity for the kids as well. 

On Saturday only, people movers will be available to transport people around town to experience many of the activities, museums, and stores.  Some of the stops will be the VASA Archives, the Henry County Museum, the Village Park, and the Colony Church.  Visitors can explore Henry County’s agricultural heritage at the Henry County Historical Museum, where a variety of antique tractors and implements will be displayed outdoors. 

Also on Saturday, September 23, the Steeple Building Museum will be hosting two events.  At 11 a.m., Johan Johansson will be performing an indoor concert.   Johan is a Swedish singer and songwriter from Uppsala.  He will be singing songs about Swedish history.  Between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. East Moline Author Lilly Setterdahl, a native of Sweden, will be promoting and signing several of her books on the front porch. Her 20th and latest book is a Swedish immigration novel, "Katrin, Almost American," set in Sweden and in Chicago. 

Several Bishop Hill businesses are also having special events.  Stop in for refreshments and browse a spectacular selection of everlasting floral arrangements, extraordinary eggs, and marvelous seasonal wreaths at an Open House on Saturday and Sunday at the Feathered Nest, located opposite the Colony School, from noon to 4 p.m.  At the Peasant Works, they will be having a Kinfolk Barnfest with a DIY Colony Photo Booth and a Vintage & Handmade Market.  Only on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Prairie Arts Center will be hosting a book signing by Mary Davidsaver, author of “Clouds over Bishop Hill.” 

And, of course, food will be in abundance. The Bishop Hill Old Settlers’ Association will serve “Colony stew” and rice pudding in the park.  The Bishop Hill Heritage Association will be serving Svensk Varm Korv, Swedish hotdogs and pork burgers by the Colony Store 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. both days.    

For more details, call 309 927-3899, email bhha@mymctc.net or check out www.bishophillheritage.org

Jordbruksdagarna is sponsored by the Bishop Hill Heritage Association, Bishop Hill State Historic Site, Bishop Hill Arts Council, Old Settler’s Association. VASA National Archives, Bishop Hill Volunteer Fire Department and numerous local businesses, with the assistance of many volunteers.  The event is also partly funded by the Galesburg Community Foundation, Illinois Art Council Agency, Nelson Farm Service, State Bank of Toulon, Bishop Hill Invenergy, TerraForm Power, a SunEdison company, and the Henry County Independent Insurance Agents Association. 

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