Norwegians celebrate National Day in Pattaya

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Pattaya’s Norwegian community celebrated the 200th anniversary of their country’s constitution at the Norwegian Church Abroad on Thappraya Soi 7.

About 400 people joined the celebration that started in the morning with a Norwegian breakfast for nearly 300. After breakfast Norwegian expats and tourists waved flags and shouted hurray for the constitution at the annual National Day parade.

There was no marching band, which is the tradition in Norway, but powerful speakers amped up the music.

The parade ended at the church where the Anne Tørisen from Cha Am told of her experiences as a Norwegian living abroad.  Senior pastor Ragnvald Seierstad gave some background about the constitution, which was written on May 17, 1814 in Eidsvoll and signed the next day. Ragnvald also gave some of the background of the parade. The first May 17 parades were for adults, but later changed to a day for children. The national anthem was sung.

The traditional May 17 menu of hot dogs, cakes, ice cream, coffee and soft drinks were served and some children competed to see how many hot dogs and ice creams they could eat. Fortunately, any resulting stomach problems did not occur at the church.

Children also enjoyed games in the parking lot, including races with potatoes on spoons, sack races and darts.