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December 17, 2013 at 11:16 AM

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Lucia Fest


LINDSEY WASSON / THE SEATTLE TIMES

"St. Lucia" Cornelia Janze, co-President of the UW Swedish Club, practices in a run-through of the ceremony with other co-President Hanne Ockert-Axelsson, center and Marika Gerken, right, before Lucia Fest, a traditional Christian celebration that commemorates St. Lucia, at the Swedish Club in Seattle on Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013. Each year the program is organized and put on by the University of Washington's student Swedish Club. St. Lucia was a Sicilian martyr famous for strapping candles to her head so she could carry food to persecuted Christians hiding in catacombs. The day in her honor is a church feast day usually observed on December 13 in Scandinavia and Italy. In Sweden, it is traditional for the eldest daughter to rise early in the morning and don a crown of candles while still in her nightgown to bring her parents saffron buns and coffee.

LINDSEY WASSON / THE SEATTLE TIMES

From left, Spencer Williams, Cassandra Williams, Kristen Johnsen and Tina White chat during a bit of downtime before their Lucia Fest performance.

LINDSEY WASSON / THE SEATTLE TIMES

UW Swedish Club Co-President Cornelia Janze, flanked by Marika Gerken, left, and other co-President Hanne Ockert-Axelsson descend the stairs from their practice room to the main floor before their performance in Lucia Fest, a traditional Christian celebration that commemorates St. Lucia, at the Swedish Club in Seattle on Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013. Each year the program is organized and put on by the University of Washington's student Swedish Club.

LINDSEY WASSON / THE SEATTLE TIMES

The group assembles onstage to sing "Santka Lucia" during Lucia Fest.

LINDSEY WASSON / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Participants bright white robes cast reflections onto the floor as they practice their songs before Lucia Fest.

LINDSEY WASSON / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Tina White, center, reads Swedish lyrics from the performers' program as they exit the hall during Lucia Fest.

LINDSEY WASSON / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Co-President of the UW Swedish Club and this year's "Lucia" Cornelia Janze gets some help with her crown of candles from Ia Dubois, a senior lecturer at the University's Department of Scandinavian Studies, as they prepare for Lucia Fest

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