Royals plan major US tour

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Staff at the Royal Palace in Oslo is planning a major tour of “Norwegian America” next year for King Harald and Queen Sonja. The royals are expected to spend as many as 11 days in the US, starting in Minnesota.

King Harald and Queen Sonja of Norway arriving at the Swedish government dinner in honour of H.R.H. Crown Princess Victoria and Mr Daniel Westling held at the Eric Ericson hall in Stockholm, Sweden on June 18, 2010. Photo by Mousse-Nebinger-Orban/ABACAPRESS.COM Photo via Newscom

Newspaper Aftenposten reports that immigrant groups in the US are standing in line to get a taste of royal glitter during the tour, which is set to begin in Minneapolis on November 11.

Details of their program aren’t yet clear, nor are their destinations apart from Minnesota and New York, where the royal couple will attend the 100th anniversary celebrations for The American Scandinavian Foundation. It’s considered one of the most important institutions for furthering cultural and educational exchanges between the US and Sweden, Norway and Denmark along with the Nordic countries of Finland and Iceland.

Most of the Scandinavian and Nordic heads of state are expected to attend the celebrations around November 20. Before that, Harald and Sonja will visit areas where many Norwegian immigrants settled, and reportedly take part in some of their anniversaries.

Their visit isn’t considered an official state visit though, and thus won’t include Washington DC or any obligatory calls at the White House, according to Aftenposten. The king and queen haven’t been on a state visit to the US since 1995, but met US President Barack Obama in Oslo last year, when he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

(PHOTO: Queen Sonja and King Harald in Stockholm in June, at one of the parties tied to the royal wedding of Swedish Crown Princess Victoria and Daniel Westling.)

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