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Danish, Cultural Life

Some of the early Danish settlements in Alberta had folk high schools based on the Danish model. The Dickson High School, established in 1930, is an example of such and also the oldest rural high school in Alberta.

Due to their small and scattered population, many Danish settlers were not able to maintain their cultural traditions. Settlers who came from the United States had already begun to marry people from other cultures and adopt the North American way of life. There is little language retention beyond the first generation (not many people speak the original language) and although there have been attempts on the part of the Danish community, lasting formal language programs have not been established.

Cultural traditions that have survived include Katten Af Tonden, a children's party where youngsters hit a suspended wooden barrel for a prize and St. Hans Fest, a celebration including singing and bonfires, used to get rid of bad spirits and ensure a healthy crop. St. Hans Fest is celebrated by the Calgary Danish Canadian Club on June 23rd, or the weekend nearest to that date.