The first week of October is Nobel Week, the week where the Nobel Prize winners of the year are announced. This year we took it as an opportunity for a little family adventure.
Stockholm and the Nobel Prize
The Nobel Prize is a celebration of humanity and science. Alfred Nobel mandated in his will a fund to be set up and the yearly interest to be paid out awarding achievements in science, literature, and for furthering peace. An award in Economics came in 1969 with a grant from the National Bank of Sweden.
Each year I follow the announcements and try to get a grasp of what the prizes were awarded for. The Nobel Prize organisation does a good job of explaining it, this in itself are major achievements of the year. Scientific progress is not made overnight. I have a science major from the University of Copenhagen. Still, the achievements awarded are not easily described or understood.
I followed the announcements of the Nobel Prizes also back when I lived in Copenhagen. But it is clear that the Nobel Prize has a special place in city of Stockholm. Alfred Nobel was born in Stockholm. The Royal Swedish Academy of Science who oversees the Nobel Prize is based in Stockholm. There is the Nobel Prize Museum in Old Town. The Nobel Banquet takes place in the Blue Hall in the Stockholm City Hall each year on the 10th of December following the award ceremony. The Nobel Prize draws an international audience and contributes to making Stockholm a vibrant metropol.
A vibrant museum
Yesterday I visited the Nobel Prize Museum with my wife and kids. There was a vibrant atmosphere, the rooms filled with people from all over the world. Centrally placed near the entrance were six stands, each announcing the laureates of one award and with a video explaining the achievement for which the prize were given. One displayed a single, large question mark, it has not yet been announced.
The kids were handed a quiz that took them to explore the exhibition on their own. My wife happily took to explore on her own this being her first visit. This was my third visit so I could enjoy and a take in the atmosphere.
Happy wife, happy kids, happy me.
In the Hall of the Mountain King
Visiting the Nobel museum was not the main purpose of our visit to the city center. Rather, I had booked a concert for the family in the Stockholm Concert Hall with the Stockholm Symphonic Orchestra. Kids friendly, a tv star from Swedish national kids tv took us through a fairy tale exploring the images of John Bauer while the orchestra played Grieg, Sibelius and Nielsen. Lots of kids in the audience, singing along, joining troll play-pretend, and shouting out advice for the heroes of our story. Great experience. Celebration of how wonderful the world can be.