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Danish Canadian Museum Advent Calendar December 21st 2020

Today there is Three important topics in todays Advent. First it is the winter Solstice, second the Christmas Star the conjunction of two planets, its the first time since 1226 that it has happened, third our Christmas memories.

Winter Solstice

Shortest Day Of The Year in Denmark and Canada

You may wonder what is the shortest day of the year in Denmark? Because of Denmark’s northern location, the length of the day with sunlight varies greatly. There are short days during the winter with sunrise coming around 8:30 a.m. and sunset 4:30 p.m.. As well as long summer days with Copenhagen sunrise at 3:30 a.m. and sunset at 10 p.m. Depending on your location in Canada in regards to the artic circle where those living close to the artic circle will not see the sun until Christmas. The average light times in Denmark are very similar to Canadian's average length of day is 8hrs today, Sunrise 8:30 sunset 4:30.

Denmark celebration of the longest and shortest days

The shortest day of the year

The shortest and longest days of the year have traditionally been celebrated. The celebration for the shortest day of the year corresponds roughly with Christmas (Danish: jul) and modern celebrations concentrate on Christmas Eve, 24 December.

During the danish Winter solstice, the shortest day in Denmark lasts about 7 hours. It’s pretty much the same in Moscow and Edinburgh.

Is Denmark dark in winter?

Well, in almost all of Europe, winter are pretty dark, in Denmark as well. Indeed European Countries have dreary and cold winter. Especially Baltic states and Nordic countries, where the winter days are really short and grey. Some people love this atmosphere, while others hate it! The light is very similar to our Canadian light, shorter days in the winter as well as longer days in the summer. Unless you live in the Northern Territory's where the winter days are much shorter and from today till Christmas you will see little to no un depending on how close to the arctic circle you are located. Having lived in the Territories for 20 years I can tell you that the light returning was a so very welcomed sight!! Like Danes, Canadian's either love the seasons or they hate them, we go from one extreme to the other in weather patterns and sometimes in one day here in Canadian winter's and summer's.

Denmark Solstice Tradition

On December 21st, a group of locals will walk to the solstice monument in Løkken to celebrate the winter solstice. They’ll do this at the site of a monument entitled ‘solhvervssøjlen’ (solstices) that was created by Danish sculptor Bodil Dam

Solhvervssøjlen is a unique artwork that marks where the sun sets over the North Sea during both the summer and winter solstices. It depicts a group of people standing in the middle of a replica of an old Viking compass, watching the sunset. This group of people supposedly symbolises “all of us, who in spite of our modern world, are quite dependent on the whims of nature”.

The science and timing behind a winter solstice

The winter solstice marks the shortest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere, when the sun appears at its most southerly position, directly overhead at the faraway Tropic of Capricorn.

The situation is the reverse in the Southern Hemisphere. There, the December solstice marks the longest day of the year -- and the beginning of summer in places such as Argentina, Australia and South Africa.

Christmas Star

Jupiter-Saturn conjunctions happen every 20 years; the last one was in the year 2000. But these conjunctions aren’t all created equal. The 2020 great conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn will be the closest since 1623 and the closest observable since 1226! 2020’s extra-close Jupiter-Saturn conjunction won’t be matched again until the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction of March 15, 2080.

For all of the reasons above, Jupiter and Saturn are now an appealing and mind-expanding sight. Don’t miss them!

The solstice and the "Christmas Star' will give a coronavirus-weary world two potent symbols of hope and reminders of a universe that marches ever onward to its own beat no virus can stop.

In sticking with the memories theme, how many times have you pulled up a memory that created a connection? When you first meet someone you create memories, all will affect your future decision and interactions with others. Like my Gum wrapper story my now friend of 7 years, I met by chance and now would do almost anything for her. The story choice follows this theme, a Story of true friendship and how valuable it really is. We are designed to connect with others it is a basic human need, that need at Christmas is amplified as the joy of sharing light and connection of Christmas spirit. The memories and bond you create at this time have a more special place in your heart as they memories will come forward with the reminder of Christmas every year.

The Snow Queen

This story is about love between friends. A little girl named Gerda was getting ready to find her friend Kai who disappeared. She crossed forests, mountains and hills to come to the Snow Kingdom and bring her friend back home.

She confronts Snow Queen and shows that friendship can be permanent and last forever. You should also cherish your friends because they are the ones who are here in times of need.


a translation of hans christian andersen's "sneedronningen" by

jean hersholt




Now then! We will begin. When the story is done you shall know a great deal more than you do know.

He was a terribly bad hobgoblin, a goblin of the very wickedest sort and, in fact, he was the devil himself. One day the devil was in a very good humor because he had just finished a mirror which had this peculiar power: everything good and beautiful that was reflected in it seemed to dwindle to almost nothing at all, while everything that was worthless and ugly became most conspicuous and even uglier than ever. In this mirror the loveliest landscapes looked like boiled spinach, and the very best people became hideous, or stood on their heads and had no stomachs. Their faces were distorted beyond any recognition, and if a person had a freckle it was sure to spread until it covered both nose and mouth.

"That's very funny!" said the devil. If a good, pious thought passed through anyone's mind, it showed in the mirror as a carnal grin, and the devil laughed aloud at his ingenious invention.

All those who went to the hobgoblin's school-for he had a school of his own-told everyone that a miracle had come to pass. Now, they asserted, for the very first time you could see how the world and its people really looked. They scurried about with the mirror until there was not a person alive nor a land on earth that had not been distorted.

Then they wanted to fly up to heaven itself, to scoff at the angels, and our Lord. The higher they flew with the mirror, the wider it grinned. They could hardly manage to hold it. Higher they flew, and higher still, nearer to heaven and the angels. Then the grinning mirror trembled with such violence that it slipped from their hands and fell to the earth, where it shattered into hundreds of millions of billions of bits, or perhaps even more. And now it caused more trouble than it did before it was broken, because some of the fragments were smaller than a grain of sand and these went flying throughout the wide world. Once they got in people's eyes they would stay there. These bits of glass distorted everything the people saw, and made them see only the bad side of things, for every little bit of glass kept the same power that the whole mirror had possessed.

A few people even got a glass splinter in their hearts, and that was a terrible thing, for it turned their hearts into lumps of ice. Some of the fragments were so large that they were used as window panes-but not the kind of window through which you should look at your friends. Other pieces were made into spectacles, and evil things came to pass when people put them on to see clearly and to see justice done. The fiend was so tickled by it all that he laughed till his sides were sore. But fine bits of the glass are still flying through the air, and now you shall hear what happened.



In the big city it was so crowded with houses and people that few found room for even a small garden and most people had to be content with a flowerpot, but two poor children who lived there managed to have a garden that was a little bigger than a flowerpot. These children were not brother and sister, but they loved each other just as much as if they had been. Their parents lived close to one another in the garrets of two adjoining houses. Where the roofs met and where the rain gutter ran between the two houses, their two small windows faced each other. One had only to step across the rain gutter to go from window to window.

In these windows, the parents had a large box where they planted vegetables for their use, and a little rose bush too. Each box had a bush, which thrived to perfection. Then it occurred to the parents to put these boxes across the gutter, where they very nearly reached from one window to the other, and looked exactly like two walls of flowers. The pea plants hung down over the boxes, and the rose bushes threw out long sprays that framed the windows and bent over toward each other. It was almost like a little triumphal arch