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Julebyen adds 'troll village'

The Knife River Julebyen, a Scandinavian-themed Christmas festival, has added a "troll village" to the three-day event Dec.1-3.

Carol Carlson, festival chair, said the troll village is family focused on winter outdoor sports gear, books for all ages represented by their local authors and illustrators, a large vintage model railroad display, a Finnish "Whip Sled," and much more. It will be held next to the festival grounds at the site of the Knife River Campground. Carlson warned visitors to the village should be aware of mischievous trolls.

Also new this year will be an expansion of festival Marketplace hours. The colorful Julebyen vendor huts, a signature of the festival, will open at 4:30 p.m. Friday for the Julefest dinner and silent auction in the Gnome Dome, and through festival hours Sunday.

The Troll Train that takes festival goers to Troll Canyon Saturday in search of trolls will make three trips this year. Last year nearly 400 adventurers rode the train. The North Shore Scenic Railroad provides the Troll Trail as well as round trip service to Julebyen from The Depot in Duluth.

Sunday is highlighted by a live nativity sponsored by the Knife River Lutheran Church at 11:30 a.m. Sunday, and capped by a celebration of music at 4:30 p.m. at the church.

Julebyen is free to the public. For complete information, visit