person fetching water buckets

Place Inspirations: Foteviken Museum, Ohio’s Viking Longhall

Asgard Alaska will be an open-air museum and a living village, but don’t let the term museum fool you. Our “museum” will be a place where all of your senses are involved. You will become a member of our Viking village for a day. Participate in our activities in a hands-on learning environment. The best way to learn something is to do it. We drew inspiration from the amazing Foteviken Museum in Höllviken, Sweden.

Foteviken Museum in Sweden

Situated at the site of the Battle of Foteviken, guests walk through a tunnel under the highway to get to the village. An earthworks fortification surrounds on three sides with a lake on the fourth. Viking guards man the gates to ensure invaders remain outside.

Visitors are greeted with replica farms, a marketplace, and buildings that house the various activities of a Viking village to the extent that historical documents and archaeology can confirm. The population of the village includes students, who learn historically accurate skills like blacksmithing and weaving. Volunteers, interested in keeping the history of the area alive, run the activities for guests. There are campgrounds and Viking houses for those guests who want to stay overnight.

Foteviken Museum offers different programs tailored to the visitors’ wishes. School groups can experience a day in the life of a Viking or become a Viking warrior. Guided tours give an overview of the village and may end with a feast in the dining hall.

Ohio’s Viking Longhall

Another inspiration comes from Ohio’s Viking Longhall campsite, where they offer a communal camping adventure in a Viking Longhall re-creation that sleeps up to 27 people. The campsite has amenities, like a fully furnished kitchen, DVD player and projection system. It can be used for larger groups and has ample meeting space as well as an idyllic setting.

Most importantly, this allowed us to realize that Asgard Alaska didn’t need to start up with everything in place. It doesn’t take millions of dollars to launch a living Viking community. We plan to start with some of the pieces, like primitive campgrounds and an archery range and trail, and work our way up to the more elaborate plans while staying true to the dream.

ohio viking longhouse
Stone-ringed firepit at the Viking Longhouse campground near Peebles, Ohio

Bringing Vikings to Alaska

These two places are the starting point what our future looks like. We will incorporate our own dreams, like a 3D-target Archery walking range and axe-throwing, and we will adapt to what our visitors expect to see.

In order to bring Vikings to Alaska, we need your participation. Asgard Alaska is a 501(c)3, which means your donations to our open-air museum are likely tax deductible. We are also looking for volunteers willing to share their skills as woodcarvers, blacksmiths, weavers and more.

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