The Mount Jewett Swedish Festival has something fun for everyone, even if you aren’t Swedish! Always held the second week of August, this annual festival celebrates Mount Jewett, PA’s Swedish heritage, and it is free to the public to attend. This year’s theme: “Sweder and Sweder Every Year,” and the schedule for the weekend of Aug. 9-11 is jam packed with activities for the whole family. You won't want to miss this!
Friday’s Opening ceremonies will kick-off the weekend in downtown Mount Jewett starting at 6pm, and will feature the crowning of the festival King and Queen. There are plenty of talented musicians scheduled to perform Friday evening, including Paul Eisert and the Hamlin Station Band. There will also be plenty of family friendly activities, such as amusement rides, face painting, a Lip Sync contest for kids, and roaming clowns. Later in the evening, a DJ will set up in the Fire Hall for the 21-and-over crowd.
Many of these activities will return on Saturday, with the addition of a children’s bike race, Power Wheels derby, jugglers, and fireworks. Lots of food fun will be had with events such as the pie and Swedish meatball contests, a chicken barbeque, and a pie auction. New to this year’s event line-up, a Swedish Fashion Show which will also take place on Saturday. Live music continues throughout the day, with groups like Second Chances Gospel Choir, Crown Gospel Band, 4 Old Friends Quartet, and Witch Hazel.
Sunday offers even more events that you will not want to miss! The chicken barbeque will start serving at noon, so you can grab some lunch before exploring the rest of the festival. Both the Viking ship and pinewood box derby races will happen Sunday afternoon following the pet parade. If you’re looking for some dessert, a free-to-enter ice cream eating contest will be your go-to location. Sunday’s new event, family feud, will set up on the Center Street stage. Closing ceremonies will conclude the festival at 6pm, at which time baby contest winners will be announced, along with teen queen crowning, and raffle winners.
If you’re able to make it downtown for the festival, be sure to check out the mural in the center of town. Painted by Kong Ho, this four-story, 3,400 square foot mural is a beautiful representation of the town’s Swedish heritage. Also downtown, you’ll discover the Nebo Chapel - a beautiful octagonal church patterned after the Ersta Kyrka at Danviken, near Stockholm, Sweden.
The community of Mount Jewett really pulls together to put this festival on each August. As a non-profit organization, they start planning the month after the festival for the following year, organizing fundraisers and coming up with new and exciting attractions. For additional information and a full schedule of this year’s events, or to connect with the community about the Swedish Festival, search “Mount Jewett Swedish Festival” on Facebook.