We are very honored to have David Toms as our Grand Marshal at this years St Patrick’s Day parade. David is originally from Waterford, Ireland but has lived in Norway since 2016. Since moving to Norway he has been an active member of the Irish community both personally and in his professional role as Community Support Officer at the Embassy. He is an acclaimed writer, having written several books of poetry including 2019’s Northly and most recently his memoir of life with a congenital heart defect Pacemaker which the Irish Times described as an “important book”. He lives in Dokka with his wife Miriam and their dog Madra.
St Patrick’s Day Parade 2023
Join us for our 21st annual Oslo St Patrick’s Day parade this coming 18th of March. Starting at Jernbanetorget at 1200 sharp, we shall proceed up Karl Johans gate to Universitetsplassen where there will be speeches and entertainment.
Welcome to the St Patrick’s Day Family Dinner 2023
Date: Saturday 18.03.2023
From: 14.00 To: 17.00
Entertainment and Buffet Meal and dessert
NOK 379,- per Adult
NOK 189,- for children under 12 years Childen “saft” included
Other drinks are not included
Please register by Friday 3rd of March by sending a payment to 6012.06.32054 (Norwegian Irish Society). We cannot take Vipps payments unfortunately.
Confirm you booking and details by sending an email to email@example.com. Please state the number in your party, any food restrictions, and if you wished to be seated with another party. Also include the nationality of all guests (this data is gathered generally and not connected to your personal details). Let us know if there is anything else we can help with such as organising high chairs or access to lifts.
Norwegian Irish Society Kids’ Halloween Party 2022
St Patricks Day Family Dinner 2022
Booking for this years St Patrick’s Day Family dinner is officially open. See details below. We request that you pre-book by Sunday, March 6th. Make sure to book early as places are limited.
All are welcome. You don’t need to be Irish to party like the Irish 🙂
Date: Saturday, 19th of March 2022.
Venue: Grand Hotel Oslo, Karl Johans gate, 31, 0159 Oslo.
Time: 1400 – 1700.
Prices: Adults – NOK 345, Children – NOK 175 (under 12 years).
Please let us know if you have any dietary requirements when booking. Drinks can be purchased at the bar.
Important – We request that you pre-book by March 6th. Bookings after that date will not be accepted due to constrictions imposed by the proprietor of the venue.
a) Please pay directly into account number 6012.06.32054 (Norwegian Irish Society). In the message field, please write your full name so that we can track the payment easily and give you a hearty welcome when you arrive at the event.
b) Also, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm your payment and the names of those you have just paid for. We will need this on the day to ensure that admission runs smoothly. Also for statistical reasons, we ask you to tell us the nationalities of all the members of your party.
This event has been generously sponsored by the Emigrant Support Fund in association with the Embassy of Ireland.
This event is hosted by the Norwegian Irish Society, a not-for-profit organization. All payments made go directly towards covering costs for food, venue and entertainment on the day. Any inquiries to email@example.com
After three long years we are looking forward to seeing you there.
Halloween/ Oíche Shamhna
whether you are Irish, Norwegians or have any class of a grá at all for Ireland or the Irish, NIS would like to wish you all a Happy Halloween / Oíche Shamhna faoi mhaise daoibh go léir.
As you know NIS aims to promote Irish culture and therefore we make an effort to celebrate the Celtic festival of Samhain/Halloween ……..as opposed to the American festival of annoying over-exaggeration….although we must admit a pumpkin beats a turnip every time (but besides that what have the Americans ever done for us!). We usually organize an event for children to provide an opportunity for them to experience Halloween as it is usually celebrated in Ireland. This year of course we have had to cancel our plans for our yearly party due to COVID, although our committee had made the plans just in case. We would like to thank our Halloween Committee (who usually contribute their time and energy and their wonderful cakes) for their efforts….I would name individuals but would then inevitably get a well -deserved mail in CAPITAL letters telling me I had forgotten someone.
But just because NIS is not arranging anything doesn’t mean you cant, but of course you need to do so safely in your own home. Our children deserve the same opportunity we had of getting a belt in the face from a swinging apple or the anxious knowledge of possibly losing a tooth to the equivalent of a thrupenny bit in the breac, or experiencing a sleepless night having heard a story to frighten the bejasus out of anyone. So get the costumes out and your strings for the apples or the basins of water ….and of course the sweets which they would usually collect under threat from the neighbours (I seem to remember we had to perform something to be given anything…..ah yes things were so much better during the war).
Feel free to send us some photos etc of your events and we may put up some on our page…….however, make a conscious decision before posting photos of your kids (unless they are unrecognizable…. which actually is part of the point of Halloween). You might even ask their consent just like we did of our own parents……yeah right (Ireland is apparently one of the few places where two positives make a negative). Or simply send us something that might amuse the rest of us…..even if it involves making an eejit of yourself (ref enclosed photo……for your information the photo was sent from the home for the banjaxed and bewildered and is unrelated to Halloween but reflects the effect of sitting indoors staring at a computer screen for the last seven months. Some sleeveen will undoubtedly say I have never looked better).
Our other main event in the course of our year is of course in connection with St Patrick’s Day. As you know we had to cancel our events in March this year at the very last minute due to the closedown in Norway, and I would like to thank our St Patrick’s Day Committee for all the hard work that went into that and acknowledge their disappointment of not being able to put those plans into action. We continue to plan for 2021 however we are aware that March 2021 will likely be too early to hold such events in person even if we are optimistic about availability of a COVID vaccine which looks likely to be approved before the end of this year. Again we would hope that we all can find alternative safe ways to celebrate our national day.
These are difficult times for our community, for all our friends and for Norway in general, and of course also for Ireland. For some it involves having to work from home (or live at the office as I call it) which some think is great and others struggle with, for others it has meant being furloughed (now there is a word we have become familiar with during COVID) and for others again it has meant losing their jobs or their business, or perhaps it has meant that finding a job or starting a job, or a course of study has not been what it “should” be, or we cannot meet our friends or socialize as we would like, and some have also actually been infected by COVID. So, it affects us all but of course it affects some much worse than others. What we all share is the fact we have families in Ireland and travel there has been much more difficult these last months. We have missed birthdays and weddings, and we have also missed illnesses and unfortunately funerals of our loved ones. We have discovered Skype/Teams/Zoom as a way to maintain contact which is at any rate better than nothing. I suspect we will all be queueing up for airline tickets towards the end of next year and will look forward to spending to support the Irish economy as well as seeing family.
Some of us have it worse than others and so I would encourage us all to look out for our friends and our neighbours and especially for those we might think are struggling with the situation, and I would also encourage those who may need support to contact us or others within our community…if only for a chat. I would also like to commend the work being done by our embassy here who will try to support where they can. At least, in all this situation, we know we are extremely lucky to be here in Norway, in comparison to other places in Europe, in the UK, or indeed in a locked-down Ireland.
We can try to “look on the bright side of life”. We can for example take heart that there are still some positives coming from Ireland…..not least our sportsmen and sportswomen who we know will give it a good lash in the rugby and soccer etc. There is even something to be had from the GAA now that Dublin decided to retire Dermot Connolly to give some of the rest a chance……. (I understand that QAnon believe that the corona pandemic is a conspiracy to prevent Dublin winning 6 in a row………sounds plausible to me). Or we can be inspired by other sports activity which we may have noted from Normal People.
NIS will continue to look at ways of contributing to putting a smile on our members’ faces and we will continue posting things on this site for our edification and amusement. We will likely try to organize some form of on-line event in the near future so watch this space. Finally let me share something that made me smile (pre the decline reflected in my photo)…..it was how the Irish differ in creativity when it comes to the English language compared to the English……… in describing the phenomenon of people who don’t follow current health guidelines the English came up with the expression “covidiocy”… fair enough but not really up there with Wilde, Shaw or Heaney.…the equivalent Irish expression I heard recently was ….gobshitery…..(sounds a little Roddy Doyle….but very encompassing).
So Northmen, Southmen, Eastmen, Westmen..and women…or however you identify
Go mbuailimid le chéile aris, go dté sibh slán / stay safe
Conn President NIS
Happy St Patrick’s Day
Happy St. Patrick’s Day / Lá fhéile Pádraig sona dhuit to all Irish, half-Irish, quarter-Irish, wish-they-were Irish in Norway. As we say, everyone can be Irish today, all you need is to wear something green and a smile (wearing only a smile in public however is probably illegal).
In these times it is a challenge to focus on anything other than negative things, but today let us all try to do something to remind ourselves of our being Irish and put a smile on our own and others’ faces…….
- Wear something green – underwear only, is acceptable but a little weird
- If you sing a song….sing an Irish song. There is a suggestion that people go to their doors or their windows or gardens at 4 pm today and belt out Ireland’s Call or Óró, sé do bheatha bhaile. Here is a refresher:
- Have some green food……although retrieving that bread from the organic recycling bag may be taking that a bit far. You can at least say to your kids that eating greens today is a national requirement. Or make colcannon or that traditional Irish dish of guacamole.
- Fly the flag. You all know how proud Norway is of their flag……so why not fly ours, on your balcony, on your garage. Or fly whatever you intended to wave at the parade….your county colours, your green scarf.
- Have your own parade at home : let the Irish music blare , line up the kids, convince your spouse it is necessary, and then just go for it. It helps if you have been active in the child creation business in the first place!! As the Norwegians say , you can only have as much fun as you create yourself!
- Have a drink! OK not at 3 pm but at an appropriate time. God knows we all need one…..and you probably wont be driving to work or to kids activities anyway……and shure its only once a year.
It doesn’t have to be green and you can have it in or with your coffee. Raise your glass to your country and to the health of your family, your friends and your neighbors.
- Post your pictures on our FB site and on your own social media sites to show us all that there is plenty of life and joy on this day
- Stay safe and follow the health authorities’ advice
Thanks to all our sponsors and supporters, our pipers, dancers, dogs and all who usually contribute to our events (and anyone else I might have missed).
A special thought and thanks to all our volunteers in the Norwegian Irish Society who have worked hard to organise SPD events in Norway this year only to see them cancelled. Know that your contribution of time and talent is very much appreciated ….we will come back stronger in the future.
President Norwegian Irish Society
Norwegian Irish Society Kids’ Halloween Party 2019
The Norwegian Irish Society is organising the annual Kids’ Halloween Party!
Date: Sunday, 27 October 2019
Venue: Ullern Menighetshus, Holgerslystveien 22, 0280 Oslo
Admission: 60 kr per person (adults and children). Payment in advance by Vipps.
As always it would be great if each family could bring along a cake. There will be a prize for the spookiest one!
Please RSVP to NorwegianIrishHalloweenParty@gmail.com by 18 October providing the following information:
Number of children:
Number of adults:
Bringing cake: (Yes or No)
The programme will be distributed to those who register closer to the date. Needless to say, we will have plenty of games with prizes, music and dancing, and a goody bag for each child. We hope that you all dress up and join us for some ghastly fun!
Mass for St Patrick – Friday 18 March 2022
For the first time since 2019, a special Mass for the Feast of St Patrick will be celebrated in St Olav’s Roman Catholic Cathedral, Akersveien 1, 0177 Oslo, on Friday 18 March at 1800 hrs. The Mná na hÉireann Choir will sing at the Mass, which will be concelebrated by, among others, the Bishop of Oslo, Msgr Bernt Eidsvig and the two Irish priests in the Oslo Diocese, Fr Rory Mulligan and Fr Joseph Mulvin. The Irish Ambassador HE Keith McBean will also participate.
Everyone is welcome – of all denominations or none! Come for that Irish community feeling, the music, the wonderful singing by the Mná na hEireann choir, and to express our hopes for a better future for the world.
Light refreshments – coffee, tea, home-made cakes and chat – will be served afterwards in St Sunniva Skole, across the road from St Olav’s.
Nora Nordan, Veronica Harrington, Annmarie McDermott More info: Nora Nordan – firstname.lastname@example.org or send a PM
St Patricks Day Parade 2022
The Norwegian Irish Society is happy to announce that all the neccessary permissions are in place and that there will be a St Patricks Day parade on March the 19th, 2022.
We hope you can join us, for what is sure to be a great day of fellowship and entertainment.
The parade leaves Jernbanetorget at 1200 sharp.
After three long years it will be geat to see you all again.
St Patrick’s Day Greeting 2021
It will be a different St Patrick’s Day again this year but let us all do what we can to mark the event and to include others in the Irish community…….send an electronic card, call someone, Zoom someone. Whatever the limitations we should all be aware that millions of Irish are celebrating the day with us, in every corner of the world, so let’s take a breather from COVID, lockdowns, and our concerns for a while. I was looking out the window from my home “office” this morning at the bird nesting box I put up last year……and now get the feeling of déjà vu as I believe I did exactly the same thing exactly a year ago……new and exciting experiences seem to be getting rarer! However, I can claim to have made my first soda bread and even remembered to let the fairies out:
I may move on to Colcannon for the day that’s in it…..and probably not corned beef and cabbage! Compared to other cultures (well maybe not so much the Norwegian) we do have a limited cuisine! (Does anyone remember eating cabbage sandwiches??…not very sophisticated but I seem to recall they were good at the time and who would have thought that pigs’ trotters could become haute cuisine in Paris).
So, there are small challenges we can master (whether it is mandarin or soda bread) now that we have more time. Covid affects us all, for some more of a great inconvenience, for others it represents something much more serious, in terms of health, loved ones and economy. I guess a major issue for us Irish here in Norway is that we cannot freely travel to Ireland, take part in key family events, have visits from home. As someone who was frequently travelling, I have of course been complaining of all the time I seem to have spent on the airport train or at an airport somewhere, but I guess the feeling of claustrophobia is affecting us all now.
Actually, I am more exercised about the thought of investing in a bottle of Irish whiskey at the Vinmonopol which is a consequence of not being able to travel or have visitors. Paying over kr600 per litre for Jameson when the brother is sipping online on one that he paid Euro 20 for is not an easy thing…. I haven’t gone down that route yet. But I am sure we can all find something on St Patrick’s day (whether it is green tea or green beer or even green wine) so that we take a minute to raise a toast to being Irish or to having a fondness for the place and the people.
So, on behalf of the Norwegian Irish Society, let me wish you all a Happy St. Patrick’s Day / Lá Fhéile Pádraig sona duit and send our best wishes for a brighter summer and some feeling of normality again.
Fan slán/stay safe
President Norwegian Irish Society