Honoring our good friend John Sinn

John Sinn portrait

It is with a heavy heart that we report John Sinn, 101, a longtime Minot resident, and extraordinary volunteer and board member of the Scandinavian Heritage Association, passed away on Friday, May 13, 2022 in a Minot assisted living center. John was a dedicated SHA board member, supporter, and volunteer of the SHA mission for many, many years. He always had a smile on his face and a positive attitude no matter the situation. He will be greatly missed by the SHA board members, those who knew him personally, and most of all, his beloved family members. Full obituary will be available at the Thomas Family Funeral Home website.

His Celebration of Life service will be Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. in First Lutheran Church, Minot.  A livestream of the service can be viewed by accessing www.firstlutheran.tv.

Visitation is set for Tuesday, May 17th from 4:00-6:00 p.m. in Thomas Family Funeral Home, Minot.

Memorials:  In lieu of flowers or plants, the family prefers memorials to the Scandinavian Heritage Association or First Lutheran Church.

2022 Park Season – Opening day is May 17th, 2022!

Opening day  of the Scandinavian Heritage Park for the 2022 season is May 17th, 2022!

  • Sons of Norway event in the works and updates to come as date draws near.
  • As always, Park buildings will be open as volunteers are able to staff. We are always looking for new volunteers to please contact our office if you would be willing and able!
  • Inclement weather may impact the schedule.

Daily Hours
9:00 AM to 4:00 PM Monday through Saturday
12 Noon to 4:00 PM Sunday

2022 Park Season ends October 2nd, 4PM.

Bob Whetter Picnic Shelter





Here’s more info of our new Picnic Shelter arriving in our last teaser, honoring Robert “Bob” Whetter, thanking him for his many years of service! His wife was always by his side and his daughter Wendy was a past Visit Minot Director! 📋

An excellent ambassador, he was witty and hardworking… although sometimes he misplaced his keys and even had the SHA golf cart stolen one summer by some teenagers! 🔑

However, that golf cart was often used to help less mobile people get around the Park and see the sights and sounds! ⛪️

Stay tuned for more, including a dedication ceremony that will follow after the park is officially open for the 2022 Season! 🌲 🌳

Park and Building Hours 2021

The Scandinavian Heritage Park Grounds are open daily dawn to dusk. Summer Gift Shop hours are Monday – Wednesday 9 AM – 5 PM, Thursday -Friday 9 AM-6 PM, Saturday 10 AM – 2:30 PM and Sunday closed. SHA Park Building Summer Hours – (Memorial Day Weekend – Labor Day weekend. ) Monday – Friday 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Saturday – 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Sunday – 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM. The Park buildings are open when volunteers are able to be present. Our buildings are not heated, so our hours are only seasonal. Group tours by appointment, please call our office at 701-852-9161 for more information.

Board Updates – March 2021

A few updates from the Scandinavian Heritage Association Board:

  • The SHA Annual Meeting was pushed from it’s normal date in January and held Saturday February 27th, 2021. Election of Officers and New Board Members were accomplished!
  • Exciting plans are underway for the SHA 2021 Mid-Summer Night Celebration to be held over TWO DAYS now –  June 18 and 19th! Please visit our Facebook page for continued developments and updates!
  • The Official 2021 SHA Park Season is scheduled to begin May 17th. On-going information will be posted on our Facebook page as we near opening day.

Fundraiser Launched to Preserve replica Gol Stave Church in Minot

Please join with us in making a difference! We’re raising money to benefit the Scandinavian Heritage Association Inc, a non-profit organization, to help pay for costs incurred to prep, stain and preserve the exterior surfaces and roof of the majestic Gol Stave Church, Gate House, Nordic Pavilion roof and picnic shelters. All are in need of preservative stains and sealers to maintain good condition!

Help us reach our goal of $15,000!

The iconic Stave church is a full-size replica of the Gol-Stave Church, which was moved from Gol, Hallingdal to the Folk Museum in Oslo, Norway about 100 years ago. This church has a special place of honor in the Heritage Park. The church was dedicated October 10, 2000. It is a unique and beautiful structure, readily recognized here in North Dakota and abroad and is only one of seven in the United States. It continues to be a desirable background for special photo sessions and unique advertising campaigns. The Gol Stave Church is held in high esteem as a tribute to our pioneer immigrants, and solidly stands as an inspirational vision of hope for generations to come.

The Scandinavian Heritage Park features not only the Gol Stave Church, but is also home to the oldest house in North Dakota, the Sigdal House, built in Norway about 1771, a Stabbur (a storehouse), Nordic Pavilion (a gathering space), 30 foot tall Dala Horse, authentic Finnish Sauna, Danish Windmill, Plaza Scandinavia, Heritage House a collection of artifacts, a beautiful waterfall, ponds, Scandinavian flag display, seasonal flower gardens, sculptures such as the famous Icelandic Explorer, Leif Erikson, monuments, picnic shelters, paved pathways and many inspirational settings for all to enjoy and is even a pet friendly location to take a stroll.

Whatever the season, the Scandinavian Heritage Park is a welcome setting, for all to experience and enjoy!

Your contribution is sincerely appreciated, every dollar raised will help make it possible for SHA to keep the buildings and features in this wonderful setting in good repair for all to enjoy!

GoFundMe – Online Donation page

We do accept donations/contributions by check; please mail them to:

Scandinavian Heritage Association, Inc.
PO BOX 862
Minot, ND 58702

Also, please be aware that all donations/contributions made outside the GoFundMe system will not be listed on the website.

For additional information about Scandinavian Heritage Association Inc:


Office Address:
Scandinavian Heritage Association, Inc.
1020 South Broadway, Minot ND 58702

Park Buildings Closed for 2020 Season

The Scandinavian Heritage Park buildings including the Stave Church are now closed to visitors for the 2020 season and being maintained to re-open again next season. The outdoor portion of the park is open 365 days a year and there is still plenty of time to get out in the park and enjoy the beautiful views, especially as fall colors will soon set in.

Updates for COVID19

Effective 7/15/2020: The beautiful Gol Stave Church is once again open to visitors from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM daily, 7 days a week. Please stop by and enjoy the park!

Previous updates

May 20, 2020

Effective immediately:  Scandinavian Heritage Park buildings will be closed until further notice except for scheduled events due to the on-going COVID-19 pandemic. Updates to follow here as restrictions change in North Dakota.

– Scandinavian Heritage Association board

Park Building Hours During Norsk Høstfest 2019

The Scandinavian Heritage park buildings will be open daily September 22-29 from 9 AM to 5 PM the week of  Norsk Høstfest in Minot to accommodate the many visitors we have from around the world. A special welcome to all visitors who visit for the 2019 Norsk Høstfest!