Vesterheim Museum Extends Temporary Closure Due to COVID-19

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Posted: April 1, 2020

Becky Idstrom, Communications and Marketing Manager  •  563-382-9681

For Immediate Release


March 30, 2020


Vesterheim Museum Extends Temporary Closure Due to COVID-19


DECORAH, Iowa—As part of its continuing response to the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), Vesterheim, the national Norwegian-American museum and heritage center, has extended its dates of closure through May 29, 2020. “We are monitoring conditions every day and will let people know if conditions change,” Vesterheim President/CEO Chris Johnson said.

Although physical activities have been canceled and buildings closed, Vesterheim is finding ways to continue its work and stay connected.

Everyone is invited to explore the museum’s many online resources at, including convenient secure shopping at the online Museum Store; the museum’s popular virtual galleries; and its engaging blog posts that feature subjects like fun activities for families. Another way to stay connected is through Vesterheim’s social media on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. Everyone is welcome to join the public Vesterheim Facebook group to share favorite Scandinavian entertainment from home.

On campus, the Vesterheim staff are taking this opportunity to complete a few safe projects, like waxing the classroom floors and working on some remodeling in the lower level of the museum’s Main Building. “We are taking social distancing measures seriously and making extra precautions to stop the spread of the virus. We’ll be ready and happy to welcome you back when we are able,” Johnson continued.

As of today, the museum is answering the main phone lines, even though most staff members are working from home. The best way to communicate is by email at

“We are grateful to everyone on the front lines, working to save lives and keep everyone safe,” Johnson said. “We want to send a heartfelt thank you for continuing to support Vesterheim during this difficult and unprecedented time. Every day, we look forward to your words of encouragement as reminders of how much you care,” Johnson continued. Please consider a donation to keep connections strong and Vesterheim’s work continuing.

Vesterheim, the national Norwegian-American museum and heritage center, in scenic Decorah, Iowa, showcases the best in historic and contemporary Norwegian folk and fine arts, and explores the American immigrant experience. This national treasure includes world-class exhibitions and 12 historic buildings. It is also a center for folk-art education, offering a wide variety of classes in authentic Norwegian folk art every year. For more information on the museum’s exhibitions, classes, events, membership opportunities, and ways to donate, check Vesterheim’s website at, call (563) 382-9681, or write to Vesterheim, 523 W. Water St., P.O. Box 379, Decorah, IA, 52101-0379.