Naselle Events

Naselle Events for the Finnish American Reporter:

By: Barb Swanson

This month was busy for our little Finnish Community. We were also blessed with some dry and sunny weather this month, a perfect reason for people to get out and about.

The Appelo Archives held their annual Auction/Fundraiser where people enjoyed all kinds of specially prepared foods and drinks. Even though the event was held in November, I thought it important to share some details from that event.

The ladies of the Rosburg Community Center donated and prepared all the food for the event, which was very popular and appreciated! The cooks were: Sonja Kruse, Dee Nikkila, and Barbara Rose. Without their food donations, the event would not have been nearly as successful.

A silent auction was held with all kinds of special items for people to wander around and sign up for.  They closed the silent auction and proceeded with the live auction, which consisted of a few amazing items:

  • An original Maude Kimball Butler watercolor
  • Italian lead crystal punch bowl
  • Brand new Singer sewing machine
  • 1 nights stay at the Cannery Pier Hotel
  • 1 night stay at the Pitchwood Inn
  • As well as homemade Finnish breads

The auction was a success. They had 68 people in attendance and made a profit of over $3,400. The proceeds will go to the Appelo Archives operation costs. This is their largest fundraiser each year and they rely heavily on donations from individuals and other businesses. There were 38 private and business donors for this event. Every business and individual were greatly appreciated!

This month, The Appelo Archives Center held a wonderful “Santa Lucia” Christmas event on Dec. 9th.

Santa at Appelo Archive Center

Santa visited at 1:00 p.m. and 25 children came to have pictures taken with him.

The Santa Lucia ceremony began at 3:00 p.m. with local 4-H ‘Lucia’ girls dressed costumes and passing out saffron buns to the visitors.

The story of Saint Lucia was also shared with visitors. Hot spiced cider, eggnog, pastries and cookies were on hand for all to enjoy.

The Naselle Finnish Children’s choir, under the direction of Becky Underhill, sang holiday songs after the ceremony with rave reviews!  The archive area was packed with people! This was another very successful event indeed! An annual tradition here in our town of Naselle.

Our own Finnish American Folk Festival sponsored its annual Deep River Christmas concert held at the historic Deep River Pioneer Church on Sunday, December 3rd. The little church was packed with close to 100 in attendance and a fire from the old wood stove warmed the building.

Darlene Bjornsgard and ladies spent Thursday afternoon decorating a beautiful fresh tree provided by Mike Swanson, chairman of the Finnish festival.

Barb Swanson organized the concert entitled: “A Christmas Concert to Delight All” and the entertainment surely did! The performances included:



The Finnish Children’s choir, directed by Becky Underhill. They were very entertaining and sang several Christmas numbers, some in Finnish.

This excellent choir will be performing at our next Finn Festival slated for the last weekend in July 27-29th, 2018.



Sue Holway, member of FAFF, gave an interesting presentation on the history of the Deep River Church.

She was an excellent speaker and enjoyed by all.

Professional vocalist Richard Ellis sang two numbers: “What Child is This” and “The Wonder of Wonders”, written by a cousin of his. He touched the entire audience with his incredible voice.

Naselle’s own Kantele player performed a selection of several Christmas carols.

Wilho Saari has been awarded the National Arts Award and has written over 4,000 pieces of music for Kantele.  He will also be performing for this year’s Finnish/American Festival.

The Finnish Adult choir performed a traditional and popular number: “Hosianna” under the direction of Cliff Weimer, the long-time choir director, now retired.

The chime choir, under the direction of Jan Wolfe, moved us all with their selections of “Away in a Manger”, “Silent Night” and “Jingle Bells”.

After the concert, the Naselle Lutheran ladies served all kinds of delicious soups at the Naselle Lutheran church.   All donations went towards the upkeep and restoration of the Deep River Church.  It was an excellent day!