Ambassador White welcomes Norwegian soccer teams for fun and ice cream in his garden
August 13, 2012
As a celebration of several Norwegian teams participating in the 2012 USA Cup in July, Ambassador White invited them all to his residence for fun, games and ice cream on August 13, 2012. The Embassy wanted to highlight that international soccer tournaments such as the USA Cup and Norway Cup are important platforms for young people around the world to get to know each other and become familiar with each other’s cultures, and thus are at the core of strengthening people-to-people ties across borders.
Unfortunately the teams from Florø FK and IL Bjarg weren’t able to make it, as they are located on the west coast of Norway, but the three other teams - Bøler IF (Girls U16), Follo SFK (Boys U15) and Bærums Verk IF (Girls U16) - showed up in good spirit despite the light rainy weather.
They were all greeted by USA Cup representative in Norway Thor-Erik Stenberg and Embassy staff, and went on to some games in the garden before Ambassador White came to talk to them. The Ambassador wanted to know what the youngsters thought were best about visiting the U.S., and, not surprisingly, got answers such as “the prices”, “the food”, “the shopping” and “the weather”. Then, ice cream and soda was served in the lovely garden of Villa Otium.
Several of the teams participated in the USA Cup homestay program, where they were matched up with a U.S. team. IL Bjarg was connected with the Dakota Alliance Soccer Club from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and Bøler IF stayed with players from the Lakes Area Youth Soccer Association from Brainerd, Minnesota. Through this program, the players from both the U.S. and Norway got to act as true youth ambassadors for their countries, and it hopefully marked the early beginning of long-lasting cross-cultural friendships.