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Community Spotlight

Member Spotlight: Andreas Örnberg

Member and Trustee Andreas Örnberg shares what makes ASI special for him and his family
November 1, 2023 By Dexter Carlson

Can you please introduce yourself and your connection to ASI? 

My name is Andreas Örnberg, I have been in Minnesota since 2010 when my family and I relocated from Stockholm, Sweden due to a work transfer. Not long after we arrived in Minnesota, we discovered the American Swedish Institute. As soon as we walked into the ASI, we had an immediate sense of belonging, as if it was a home away from home. I have been a member since that first visit, and since 2019, I have been fortunate to serve as trustee on the ASI board.

How and why did you start coming to ASI? What drew you to this museum and cultural center, and what inspired you to become a member?

When we moved from Sweden in 2010, we heard from some friends about the American Swedish Institute. When we first visited ASI, we felt a connection and understood what a special place this could become for our family, a place that made us feel closer to home. Our kids have been part of Swedish school, Midsummer and Lucia. We love coming to ASI to see exhibitions, meet friends, enjoy some Fika and do some shopping.

What about the Lucia Celebration is special or important to you and your family?

It is such a wonderful tradition and something that has been very special for our family to be part of. This is one way we honor our Swedish culture and continue to teach our children about Swedish traditions.

Are there any fun or interesting stories you can share about Lucia either here at ASI or memories from Sweden?

In Sweden, Lucia is something that is celebrated from preschool to high school. If you go to a preschool Lucia celebration, you will see that half of the children are Lucias and half are tomtar. In high school the Lucia choir often use real candles both for the attendance and in the Lucia’s crown. There are always water buckets close by, just in case someone faints and accidentally starts a fire.

Why do you feel that it is important to be a member at ASI – what are important aspects of membership at ASI, or what do you appreciate about being a member here?

Our family really treasures everything that ASI offers and are so happy to contribute in different ways to keep this very special place thriving.

ASI is grateful to Andreas and our members for their support. Members enable ASI to remain a vibrant, innovative, and welcoming cultural center for all people, serving our community with contemporary, accessible, and creative experiences to learn, explore, and connect. Learn more about ASI membership here.