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Why 2017 will be another huge year for Norway's royals

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Why 2017 will be another huge year for Norway's royals
A busy year awaits on the other side of the Christmas break. Photo: Lise Åserud / NTB scanpix
10:12 CET+01:00
In 2017, both King Harald and Queen Sonja will turn 80. Their birthdays will be celebrated together on May 10th, in addition to several private and public celebrations.
Queen Sonja and King Harald has already a number of big events already planned for next year. Not unexpectedly, there will be more winter sports activities for King Harald. In early February, he will attend the Norwegian ski championships in Lynga and the Royal Family as usual will attend the Holmenkollen Ski festival in March.
 
But before that, there will be some birthdays to celebrate. On February 12th that Princess Astrid will turn 85 years, and on February 21 her brother King Harald will celebrate his 80th birthday. 
 
“It is not certain how the princess will be celebrated yet. The king will be away on his birthday and will celebrate privately. There will be a combined celebration for his and the queen's 80th birthdays on May 10th. That will be the government's gift to them,” Royal Palace communications manager Marianne Hagen told NTB.
 
Queen Sonja will spend part of her 80th birthday on July 4th inaugurating a new project in Dronningparken, where part of the stables building that was originally built for Queen Maud's horses, will be reintroduced as the Queen Sonja Art Hall, a venue for arts and culture.
 
The royals will also take part in a number of high-profile events, both international and domestic. 
 
In February, there will be a celebration in honour of the 100th anniversary of the first ever Sami national meeting. Finland will spend 2017 celebrating its 100th year of independence and the Norwegian royals will join the main celebration on June 1st. 
 
An official state visit from Iceland is also expected in March.
 
For the Crown Prince Couple, their year will open with participation at the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise's annual conference and, a bit later, the World Economic Forum in Davos. 
 
On the private front, Crown Princess Mette-Marit's son Marius Borg Høiby will turn 20 and move to the United States, while Princess Ingrid Alexandra will officially become a teenager on January 21st. 
 
The upcoming milestone-packed year follows a 2016 in which the Royal Couple celebrated 25 years on the throne
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