With the exception of the Copenhagen Airport during layovers, I have never been to Denmark.

So, when Esten´s soccer team signed themselves up for Dana Cup, a week long soccer tournament, I became excited!

Dana Cup claims to be one of the biggest and most prestigious soccer tournaments in the world, and takes place in Hjørring, Denmark.

And since I have never been there I showed up with a list of MUST DOs.

Most important for me was to take a day trip to see some of the German bunkers that are now washing up from their hiding places in the sand and are slowly eroding out to sea.

And thank goodness we arrived a day before the tournament began to experience the history, and the uncommonly good weather.

We ate the famous Skagen Salad,

and marveled at the sight of two seas coming together in Grenen.

Then we found our way home to our tiny ocean front cabin, where we discovered many of our neighbors to be vacationing German parasailers.  So cool to watch!

Our view:

We took our bikes and loved how flat Denmark is compared to Norway! Biking in Norway is not for the gear-less beach bikes from my childhood!

The next morning we went to Esten´s first scheduled soccer game, a game in the qualifying round against a Frankfurt, Germany team, and our boys lost.

It was clear they were nervous. They have never played in such a big tournament before and it showed.

Ironically, at the end of the game one of the the German trainers approached the parents and trainers of the Lillehammer, Norway team. Evidently, he felt our team was special and particularly difficult to beat!?!

ANYWAY…If and when they lose out of the tournament, my itinerary of things to see and do in Denmark for the rest of the week was ready.

But, after the qualifying round, THE DREAM TEAM CONTINUED TO WIN!

And wow was it exciting….

I began to text updates to Dad in LA (Lower Alabama). He was on the edge of his seat til the final second.

We ended up watching a LOT of soccer, and seeing very little Denmark.

NRK 1 news showed up and filmed the games so all of Norway could follow along on the nightly news. Other teams and coaches started showing up to watch our games, and the boys were beside themselves.

You could see our coaches were having a difficult time hiding their excitement as well.

Anyway, our thirteen year olds, made it to the finals of The Dana Cup!

A pretty big crowd showed up for the rainy 10:00 am final game on Saturday morning to see Norway vs Mexico.

We could see our guys warming up on a practice field in the background, then they disappeared into the locker room.

The official introduced the Lillehammer team first, and the boys nervously paraded onto the field. They were stretching and bouncing around like they had ingested too much sugar.

AND THEN,

to everyone´s surprise, there was an announcement that Mexico had booked their return flights the day before due to a scheduling misunderstanding!

You should have seen the looks on the boy´s faces when it finally became clear that they had just won The Dana Cup for 1012!

YouTube Promotional Video of The Dana Cup