As a SHOP: Discover unique gifts…

Vesterheim celebrates the living heritage of Norwegian immigrants to America and shares this cultural legacy for the inspiration and enrichment of people of all backgrounds. Your purchases support the Museum. Merchandise is catalogued within these collections: * Apparel & Accessories * Books * Cards & Calendars * Folk Art Classes & Supplies * Gifts * Handcrafted Art * Just for Fun, and * Kitchen. Museum members receive 10% discount on purchases. If you aren’t a member already, join here today! Gift memberships are encouraged.

Support the Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum & Heritage Center …by simply purchasing your specialty merchandise here:


Be a DONOR: Show that you care...


There is no better way to connect to our community than through the Vesterheim membership program. Memberships at specified levels are offered: * Basic * Household * Friend * Supporter * Sponsor * Sustaining Fellow, and * President’s Circle. 


Vesterheim is first and foremost, a community. Many among us choose to support our community with financial gifts. There are lots of ways to get involved. Choose from the many options:

  • One time or Monthly Donations (in any amount) are encouraged. Everything we do, every single day, depends on generous gifts to the Vesterheim Annual fund from friends like YOU! Thank you for your support.
  • Object Donation: Vesterheim accepts donated objects for use on the museum campus or for fundraising purposes. Examples of    museum use items include tools and supplies to help in museum up-keep. Examples of fundraising items include artwork for  raffles, and items and services for auctions. Items Donated to Vesterheim‘s Collection: Every year, new objects, books, or archival  materials are added to the collection through the generosity of individuals and organizations. These donations help Vesterheim fulfill its mission of sharing the Norwegian-American experience.
  • Planned Giving: There are many types of planned giving.
    • Bequests: Plain and simple, bequests are gifts made to a charity through a donor’s estate. These are the most popular planned gifts and allow donors to make commitments without using assets that they may want to use in other ways.
    • Charitable Remainder Trusts: A charitable remainder trust is an irrevocable trust that generates a potential income stream for the donor who sets up the trust or other beneficiaries, with the remainder of the donated assets going to Vesterheim after a set length of time. Charitable trusts offer flexibility over your charitable beneficiaries as well as lifetime income, supporting retirement, estate planning and tax management.
    • Charitable Lead Trusts: A charitable lead trust reduces your beneficiaries’ taxable income by first donating a portion of the trust’s income to Vesterheim, transferring the remainder of the trust to the beneficiaries after a set length of time.
    • Life Insurance: To make a gift of life insurance, donors can transfer their policy so that Vesterheim becomes the owner and beneficiary. Donors may then take an immediate income-tax deduction. By continuing to pay the premiums, donors may deduct each payment in subsequent tax years.
    • Real Estate: Gifts of real estate are a wonderful way to remember Vesterheim, and a great tax savings because they help donors avoid any capital gains tax burden.
    • IRA Charitable Rollover: Are you looking for a tax-effective way to make a year-end gift to Vesterheim? A charitable gift rollover from your Individual retirement account (IRA) may be your best option.
    • Transferring Stocks and Securities: To request information on transferring gifts of stocks and securities, please call Vesterheim’s Development Director.
  • Valhalla Society: Founded in 1989, the Valhalla Society consists of a special group of donors who have chosen to honor their passion for preservation with planned giving. These gifts provide a lasting legacy for the future of Vesterheim. Vesterheim thanks these Valhalla members for their contributions.
  • Endowed Funds: There is a growing need for the museum to secure long-term financial stability in order to deliver reliable service despite changes in the economy. Building endowments is one of the most important ways to ensure Vesterheim’s financial health. Each gift is an investment in the future of Vesterheim, one of America’s most treasured cultural resources.
  • Corporate Partnerships: Whether you are a small business owner or are a large, multi-national corporation, corporate partnership with Vesterheim provides opportunities for you to promote your company while supporting the museum. Support from corporate partners is vital to Vesterheim’s success.  Explore how your corporation can partner with us to meet your philanthropic and marketing goals.
    • Corporate Membership: The Vesterheim Corporate Membership program allows businesses of all sizes to enjoy the benefits of corporate membership while providing the museum with essential operating support.
    • Corporate Sponsorship: Corporate sponsorship provides valuable partnership opportunities for corporations of all sizes while providing your company with exposure and reach to Vesterheim members and guests who visit the museum’s exhibitions and programs, participate in educational programs, attend Vesterheim events across the country and/or read our Vesterheim magazine.
    • Corporate Giving: Corporate donations are critical to helping us fulfill our mission each and every day. Corporate donations help us tell the important story of the many contributions Norwegian-Americans have made to building and sustaining our immigrant nation. They help us preserve the living traditions of Norwegian heritage for future generations. And they help us bring the Norwegian culture to life, while inspiring and enriching the lives of all people who experience it. All corporate gifts make a positive difference and are appreciated.

Volunteer: Volunteers of all ages and abilities are involved at Vesterheim, and new volunteers are always welcome. There are great opportunities for people from many walks of life. You may be able to offer a specific skill or talent, but often, enthusiasm and a willingness to learn are the only requirements for a volunteer task! Our volunteers are tour guides and folk artists, cooks and servers, clerical and curatorial helpers, translators and teachers, carpenters and painters, and more. Most importantly, each volunteer is an ambassador for Vesterheim.

Support the Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum & Heritage Center …by simply joining, giving, and volunteering here:

Contact info

520 W Water St, Decorah, IA 52101, USA

Additional info

Shopping Information

Giving Information


You don't have permission to register