People dressed as Viking warriors in a Viking village

How Museums Build Stronger Communities

Museums strengthen communities in a variety of ways, however, Asgard Alaska is much more than a museum. It is a living Viking settlement that will bring the experiences of the Vikings to life, combining traditional museum exhibits and content with opportunities to participate in Norse-themed activities. With many healthy and educational opportunities to take advantage of, friendships, community ties, and the bonds of family can all flourish and strengthen at Asgard Alaska.

Connecting with Others

While people connect to the internet with relative ease, they can have a hard time connecting to others in real life. Asgard Alaska provides multiple avenues for connecting people to each other.

An overnight stay at one of our early campsites or in one of our authentic Viking dugouts provides the perfect opportunity for family members to get away from electronic connections and connect with each other. When there’s no access to Wi-Fi or power, parents and children quickly remember how to engage with each other in supportive ways. Quality time together comes partly from the quantity of time spent together away from other distractions.

Community members who take advantage of annual memberships will connect with others who share similar interests. They can then talk to and enjoy spending time with each other. Connections like this are especially powerful in Alaska, where the largest state in the United States still feels like a small town in many ways. By visiting Asgard Alaska often, community friends and neighbors will create even stronger bonds as they learn about Vikings through experience. Our volunteers will have the greatest opportunity to bond with each other and with regular visitors because of the amount of time they spend together.

Team Building

A replica Viking longship

For Viking longships to work efficiently, the rowers had to work together. We understand that it’s often difficult to get disparate people to see things the same way. It takes time, trust, and accumulated shared experiences. Asgard Alaska provides a place to accelerate building trust through participation in shared experiences.

Our living Viking village will eliminate the barriers to building a team because everyone will start on equal footing. Unless you have a Viking expert in your group (which most of us do not), supervisors and employees will start with the same knowledge base and be able to build out from there. Whether for a day of archery and axe throwing, an evening feast in the longhouse, or a week-long program that includes learning to navigate a Viking longship and other aspects of life in an Old Norse village, your team will be stronger when the people in it embrace the Viking spirit.

By bringing a unique experience to the Alaskan landscape, Asgard Alaska provides the facilities and experiences that businesses, church groups, schools and other organizations need to improve their teams’ ability to work together. Team building isn’t just for organizations. Friends and families can enjoy our grounds to build stronger bonds that go beyond screen time and community binge watching.

Building Empathy

People who use empathy know how to step into another person’s shoes. They can see the world from a different point of view, and they can use that viewpoint to understand how others feel, even in circumstances that may be foreign to the empathetic person. Not everyone knows how to do this naturally. Asgard Alaska provides people with an opportunity to experience another way of life. Guests can literally step into the shoes of a Viking and experience how it felt to live more than a thousand years ago. Afterwards, visitors will find it easier to empathize with another way of life because they have experienced a culture they were not familiar with.

Self-Reliance and Empowerment

Learning archery at a Viking festival

While there is a sizable portion of the Alaskan population that is self-reliant, there are still too many things we allow machines to do for us. Rather than walk, we use cars. We don’t remember information; we use the internet to call it up instantly. Instead of entertaining ourselves and each other, we rely on screens to do it for us. Asgard Alaska will strengthen the community through demonstrations and activities that require people to use their own personal mental and physical power.

One example of an activity that creates a sense of self-reliance and empowerment is archery. Traditional archery allows the archer to bring together the mind and body to create the desired outcome. Good archers only need to look at their targets, without the use of a sight or pins, and through the correct form, they will be able to hit the center. Even new archers are likely to hit a bull’s-eye with just 15 minutes to an hour of practice. Those that use a traditional bow will realize that it’s their own ability that allows them to succeed, not the bow they are using.

Rowing a longship, creating a piece of jewelry, and taking part in an art project are all other ways that people can improve their understanding of who they are and what they are capable of.

Play and Creativity

children in viking armor
Children learning Viking history while wearing armor

Asgard Alaska is more than a museum where people wander the halls, look at artifacts, and read placards. It is a place where play is encouraged and supported. People learn best through play. It is something that adults may have forgotten, but they will remember when they enter our Viking village. By experiencing the heat of a forge, the combing of wool, and the feast of the holidays, guests are playing with their environment to learn about Viking life and themselves. When dressed in Viking garb, visitors don an appearance that allows them to set aside modern notions and find their inner warrior, farmer, or whoever they choose to be in our Viking society.

Creativity is enhanced when people learn new information. Asgard Alaska provides the opportunity to obtain real knowledge that will help solve future problems through greater creativity.

Improved Economics

Creating a reason for tourists to stay longer in Alaska is good for the local economy. Asgard Alaska’s visitors and guests will need places nearby to shop for food, gas, and supplies. Every dollar spent at or donated to support our Viking settlement will bring money into the borough. Guests who choose not to stay at our historical campground will still contribute to nearby hotels, restaurants, and other members of the nearby tourist economy. Asgard Alaska is a locally-grown, unique, and visionary nonprofit organization. We look forward to launching the site just as soon as we can, and we hope that this post helps you understand more about what we are trying to accomplish. For more information, please sign up for our newsletter below or read some of the other articles about us.

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