Staff Report

The Solvang Danish Days Foundation has named Christiana Heron of Solvang as the 2018 Danish Maid to preside over this year’s Danish Days celebration on the weekend of Sept. 14-16.

“The women in my family, starting with my grandmother, have all been fortunate enough to hold the position of Danish Maid and have all loved being a part of this annual celebration. I believe that now it’s my turn to carry on the legacy that my family has enjoyed for so long, and to honor the important roles that women have held in Solvang’s history,” said Christiana, who will be entering her senior year at Santa Ynez Valley Union High this fall.

She joins her older sister Gabrielle Heron, who was the 2017 Danish Maid; older sister Angelique Heron, the 2014 Danish Maid; and mother, Betina Nielsen Heron, who was the 1988 Danish Maid, in representing Solvang.

Christiana’s grandmother, Ann Nielsen, served as the first “greeter” to the festival in 1961 – Solvang’s 50th anniversary. After the 50th anniversary celebration, the post of Danish Maid was officially created.

Danish Days began as an event honoring the 1911 establishment of Solvang by Danish-Americans.

Christiana’s great-grandfather, Axel Nielsen, was a part of the beginnings of Danish Days, and her great-great-grandparents, Marcus and Andrea Nielsen, who emigrated from Mors, Denmark, were among the early immigrant settlers of Solvang.

Stay tuned for the Star’s interview with Christiana and full coverage of Danish Days in future issues.

To get more information, make a donation or volunteer to help with Danish Days, go to www.SolvangDanishDays.orgSolvang Danish Days is also on FacebookTwitter and Instagram at and