Luxembourg Ambassador to attend Lux Fest

Thursday, February 6, 2020
Luxembourg Ambassador to the United States, His Excellency Gaston Stronck
(Photo contributed)

The Luxembourg Ambassador to the United States, His Excellency Gaston Stronck, will attend Lux Fest June 6-7, 2020 in Alton, Iowa.

Lux Fest is a celebration of the arrival of Luxembourg settlers in Sioux County, Iowa, in May, 1870, when fourteen families homesteaded an area around Alton.

Ambassador Stronck’s schedule while he is in Iowa will include riding in the Lux Fest parade on June 6, and participating in two receptions. The first, private reception will allow him to greet those holding dual citizenship with the United States and Luxembourg, along with other invited

guests. A second gathering will be open to members of the public who wish to meet Ambassador Stronck.

A dinner for Luxembourger clubs from Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Iowa and a tour group from Luxembourg visiting Lux Fest will honor Ambassador Stronck in the evening. Featured speaker at the dinner will be Deacon Rick Roder of Remsen. Ambassador Stronck will also be asked to address the group.

Other tentative activities for the Ambassador include Sunday Mass at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Alton, featuring a prelude of Oktoberfest music, and tours of area towns with Luxembourg heritage such as Granville, Remsen, and Le Mars.

Ambassador Stronck has been ambassador to the United States since September, 2019. Other postings in his diplomatic career include serving as Luxembourg’s ambassador to India, the Russian Federation, and Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden. He holds a Master’s degree in Social and Military Studies from the Royal Military Academy in Brussels, Belgium and a Ph.D. in History and Defence Studies from the Universite Paul Valery in Montpelier, France. He speaks Letzeburgisch, French, German, and English fluently and has a working knowledge of Russian, Dutch, and Danish. He is married and has two grown children.

The last time a Luxembourg ambassador visited northwest Iowa was in October, 1978, when Ambassador Adrian Meisch, along with consul general Nicholas Colling of Chicago were guests of groups in Remsen and Le Mars.

The Luxembourg Heritage Society of Northwest Iowa will be host for Lux Fest and for Ambassador Stronck. The Society will meet Saturday, February 8 at 9:30 a.m. in the meeting room of the Remsen Public Library. In case of bad weather, the meeting will be moved to February 15. The group will continue plans for Lux Fest and for the ambassador’s visit. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Additional information on meeting dates, Lux Fest and the ambassador’s visit can be found on the Society’s website, nwialux.org.