Gleðilegur Þjóðhátíðardagur – Happy National Day!

The Icelandic Flag, flying at Þingvellir - I took this photo on my first trip to Iceland in 2011.

The Icelandic Flag, flying at Þingvellir – I took this photo on our first trip to Iceland in 2011.

Today, June 17, is Iceland’s National Day. Per this article in The Reykjavík Grapevine:

Iceland’s National Day has been celebrated annually on June 17 since 1944, when on that day the Republic of Iceland was formed after Icelanders sneakily severed their ties with Denmark while the latter were busy being occupied by Nazis. It was decided that the Republic should be formally founded on June 17 to honour Iceland’s “independence hero”,  Jón Sigurðsson

There will be day-long celebrations around the country; a full schedule of those taking place in Reykjavík is available here, some of the highlights including:

  • an Antique Car Show, run by the Kruser Car Club
  • Multiple parades, with multiple brass bands
  • a kung fu performance
  • a children’s entertainment program, including a performance by this year’s Eurovision competitor Eyþór Ingi and a Bollywood and Breakdance show
  • “sun watching in Austurvöllur” with the astrological society
  • a strength competition (!!!!)
  • viking games, run by the viking society, Einherji (!!!)
  • a sailing competition
  • an “accordion ball” put on by Reykjavík’s Accordion Club

It all sounds delightful to me.

In conclusion, I give you the (progressively epic–wait for the rolling drums and cymbal clash) Icelandic National Anthem, known as ‘Lofsöngur’ (“Song of Praise”) or ‘Ó Guð vors lands’ (“O, God Of Our Country.”)

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