‘Uff Da’ Night Away


photo by bhoomi patel

Norwegian coin necklaces, key chains, and other jewelry Guzman sold during Syttende Mai .

Syttende Mai, one of the most anticipated holidays in Stoughton, has been celebrated since the 1950s. With delicacies ranging from the classic cheese curds and cream puffs to the homemade lefse and Norwegian meatballs, Stoughton goes all out when it comes to the Constitution Day of Norway.
With 2020 being the last full Syttende Mai celebration Stoughton experienced due to COVID-19, many are excited to finally have a full-fledged Syttende Mai celebration. Stephen Stokes, one of the parent volunteers for the Stoughton Norwegian Dancers, expresses his excitement for this year’s festival.
“Syttende Mai has been fantastic. [Especially] since we’ve not been able to have it for the last few years. We’ve had great weather, and lots of great support for the group,” Stokes says.
Along with Stokes, Ed Guzman, CFO/CIO of Diakonos Designs, also expresses his joy on seeing downtown Stoughton crowded with families.
“I am absolutely loving [Syttende Mai]. I’m loving the weather, I’m loving the vibe. People were not worried about scurrying around getting children to and from a parade yesterday. Grandparents and parents were just actually enjoying themselves with their family [and] that actually made it […] more fun,” Guzman says.
Guzman also had some crafty jewelry made just for this special occasion.
“We created some unusual things: we have a 100-year-old Norwegian coin that we made into a key chain, we also have [some] Norwegian coin necklaces [made with] sterling silver,” Guzman says.
The Stoughton Lions Club’s stand was nestled right around Division Street and is known for their freshly breaded cheese curds, brats, hamburgers, and more. Paul Droessler, member of the Stoughton Lions Club, usually works to make fresh cheese curds for their stand.
“I think it’s awesome. It was really hot, but the crowd was very happy. [There was] lot’s of love out there, and I didn’t see anybody upset,” Droessler says.
Working through the draining heat is not an easy job. Stokes talks about how he stays motivated to volunteer for their stand.
“It’s just nice to be able to serve the community and [see] all the people who support our group and […’ [seeing] the support for all the different groups in town is fantastic,” Stokes says.
From all of these positive reactions, it seems like Syttende Mai was a success.