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copenhagen EXpat fair 2010

4 October 2010 1

The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010

it’s just like uni... but this time the campus is the whole city

All of the ‘freshers’ are excitedly gathering in the main hall, looking at the displays of the various extracurricular clubs they might be joining. But this isn’t the first day at university, it’s the Expat Fair at City Hall on Monday October 4, and the stakes are much higher than what you’re going to do when you’re not playing pool down the student union. For new arrivals to the city, the decision to join a club will affect their social life in this country more than any other – yes, even more than which pub you make your local. Because along with your colleagues and family, the fellow members of your club are the people you will see the most of during your time in Denmark.   And it’s a great way to integrate, because even if you choose a club with really obvious links to one particular country, like Aussie rules or Gaelic football for example (neither will be present at the fair, but both are played here), you’ll still probably find that Danes account for close to half the members.   And if you fancy going the whole hog and turning native, there are a number of Danish clubs present, including Ajax (handball) and Boldklubben Skjold (football), which are really friendly to foreigners speaking another language (providing it’s English!) – after all, they’re excited at the prospect of adding some international flair to their talent pool. You could be the next Wilson Kipketer.   A total of 40 clubs will be present at the Expat Fair, covering a wide selection of sports suitable for all ages, sizes and abilities; a varied selection of hobbies, including dance classes for ballet, hip-hop and reeling; and a number of adult education course providers – a reminder that Danish classes aren’t the only good reason for going back to the classroom.

The Expat Fair is the brainchild of Spousecare, an organisation that looks after the needs of the spouses and families of professionals who relocate to Denmark. It recognises that when a placement fails, in 67 percent of cases it is due to spousal or family reasons, and that this is also the primary cause of professionals not taking the job in the first place – in 78 percent of all cases. Spousecare is organising the three-hour fair in collaboration with the Copenhagen City Council, the University of Copenhagen, the Capital Region and the Ministry of Integration.   It begins at 16:00 on the spacious ground floor of City Hall, which is located close to Tivoli in the centre of the city at Rådhuspladsen (City Hall Square). At 17:00 Lord Mayor Frank Jensen will give an official welcome to the city, followed by an address from British Ambassador Nick Archer, who we are pleased to say spared some time last month to talk to us about the fair and share some of his experiences of joining clubs in foreign countries as a new arrival. And don’t forget the famous City Hall pancakes, which will be served following the presentations, and to register your attendance at      Our intention in this supplement is to give you as much information about the Copenhagen Expat Fair as possible. And while it might persuade some of you to attend the fair, we hope even more of you will use it to pick up the phone and enquire. There’s a wealth of opportunity out there – don’t waste it! Ben Hamilton

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Nordre Fasanvej 230 • Copenhagen and all over Denmark • 2

The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010

The ambassador who’s looking out for the expats’ needs


ick Archer, the British ambassador to Denmark, will be one of the guest speakers at the Expat Fair. The Copenhagen Post’s Victoria Steffensen recently caught up with him to discuss the importance of the fair and find out about his and his family’s experience of joining clubs in foreign countries.

My meeting with the current British ambassador to Denmark, Nick Archer, was scheduled for an unfortunately very rainy morning earlier this month. The British Embassy is housed in an old building, and its interior décor would make a head of state feel more at home than a local newspaper journalist! Despite the rather less than relaxed surroundings, Archer was keen to put me at ease, pouring me a coffee and speaking openly about his experiences in this northern country which are a little different from his previous postings in the Middle and Far East. Archer chairs an advisory board to Expat in Denmark, which consists of expats and also some Danes. They aim to offer feedback to the organisation that is a little different to what its members might provide. During the interview, it was exceedingly refreshing how positive Archer was about the country in which he is now residing. He made a point of stressing how happy he and his family are living in Denmark, and I really believed him. Can you explain your role in Expat in Denmark? We obviously hear what the organisation is up to; we tell them if there are areas where we might have a particular concern, or share with them some opportunities for the organisation we may have come across. How can joining a club or other organisation help the average foreigner on moving to a new country? In any place it is important to ‘fit in’ so to speak, to find other people that you have something in common with. It doesn’t necessarily have to be your nationality; it can simply be finding someone who shares an interest with you, such as football or art. How important do you think a network is when you move to another country? As diplomats we are in effect cushioned from the challenges facing expats that come here without a support network in place. The diplomats from the

other countries are in an essence our network. However, one of the first things I did when I arrived here was to get involved in the Expat in Denmark initiative, which aims to help those new arrivals in a less fortunate position. Has having a family changed your need to network? Yes definitely. My first two diplomatic postings were as a single man, so I could just jump right in as soon as I arrived. With a family, you are bringing with you people who have moved to the country often solely because of you. It may be that they don’t have a work network they can use for social purposes, and of course this applies even more so for children. You have to ensure that they are happy with their new home too – a network is important for that. I’d read that there would also be some Danish clubs at the fair and asked him whether or not non-Danish speakers might have a problem joining these organisations. I think that language is sometimes seen as more of a barrier than it needs to be. In Copenhagen especially, it is hard to find a Dane that doesn’t speak a word or two of English. My sons actually go to skating lessons at a Danish club – of course the language needed by them or their instructor is quite limited, as with most sports, and they seem to find a way of communicating via a mixture of Danish, English and sign language! Why do you think some expats struggle? What we hear a lot is that some expats find it difficult to feel at home here. I think Denmark is a fantastic country, and I hope that what we’re doing can help others to feel the same way too.

Bring 5 knives and we salute you with La Divina glasses! Do you know the feeling – good food, lovely company and the party is ruined by a knife – not because a murder has taken place, but because your knives are in such a poor shape, that cutting a small piece of macaroni is an impossible job. But it does not have to be this way. You should have the knives as your best friend in the kitchen. And we can help you. At the moment we even give you 2 Villeroy & Boch Glasses “La Divina” for free when you sharpen 5 knives. And if you need the knives right away, do not worry – we can do that too. Welcome to a world of sharp knifes and supreme craftsmanship – it is time to sharpen up the party!


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The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010


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New mosque one of several buldings approved for new Amager complex ‘The Battery’

His method of expression might be a-changing, but Dylan’s art is as poetic as his music

Rotary world president in town to meet Mary and others at Oddfellow Palæ




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bike paths in and around the larger cities, with the aim of doubling the number of cycle commuters from three to six percent of the population. Lise Bjørg Pedersen of the Danish Cyclist Association said: ‘Cyclists feel the same way as drivers do – they would

like motorways. And they hate having to stop for red lights!’ The government has already begun plans for the construction of the bicycle motorways in cities such as Århus, Odense, Aalborg and Copenhagen. In the capital an estimated

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OR HIS MOHAMMED cartoon drawing, which was first published in Jyllands-Posten newspaper in 2005, Kurt Westergaard has been chosen to receive the M100 Sanssouci Media Award. The theme for this year’s ceremony, which was held on Wednesday in Potsdam in eastern Germany, was ‘Freedom of the Press in Europe’. According to Potsdam mayor Jann Jakobs, Westergaard is ‘a person who has become a symbol for freedom of expression and of the press’. Westergaard has become internationally reknowned as the artist who depicted Mohammed wearing a bomb in his turban for a 12-drawing series commissioned by Jyllands-Posten. The keynote speaker for the evening’s ceremonies was Chan20-30 percent of the population cellor Angela Merkel. currently cycle to work. The M100’s decision to award bike paths will help people get Westergaard its prize is in sharp to work much faster, and there Bencontrast to the decision made neweis will be ‘service stations’ along earlier this year by German Circus the way where riders can get national television station , BelZDF, lah their bicycles’ tyres pumped which cancelled a scheduled øj; starts Friday, end up, pick up free water and view interview with the artist for what s Sep 12; traffic information. (alf) it said were security reasons. (rc)


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The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010

enterainment schedule Scene Kunst Skoler English drama classes Københavns Balletskole Ballet Københavns Badminton Klub Badmiton Mayor’s speech and British ambassador’s speech Flow dance academy Hip hop Bollywood Dancing Dancing Brønshøj Judo Club Judo Dancetide Scottish dancing Københavns Balletskole Ballet Ørestad Aikido Klub Aikido

4:15pm - 4:25pm 4:30pm - 4:45pm 4:45pm - 5:00pm 5:00pm - 5:45pm 5:45pm - 6:00pm 6:00pm - 6:10pm 6:15pm - 6:25pm 6:25pm - 6:35pm 6:35pm - 6:45pm 6:45pm - 7:00pm

The sharpest place in Copenhagen! In the Meattown, Kødbyen, you find the sharpest place in Copenhagen, yes maybe in the world. We know we have the widest assortment of knives in Europe, and maybe in the whole world, but we also have the widest assortment of pots, pans and utensils of all kinds. So if you want a small dinner, if you want to bake a cake, or if you want to make a big kitchen, you will have to stop at H.W. Larsen. Welcome on board, the sharpest party is going on, we are open weekdays from 6.30 am - 4.00 pm, pop in and let the good stuff thrill you.


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The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010

no beating about: if in doubt, try it out Clubs offering free trials Copenhagen Expat Fair, City Hall, Rådhuspladsen, Mon 16.00-19.00

So you’re new in town, don’t know anyone, don’t know the language and don’t know what to do? Sound familiar? Well, instead of burrowing a hole into your couch watching crappy TV shows, come out to the Copenhagen Expat Fair this Monday. The City of Copenhagen has decided to help out its large expat community by hosting a fair that brings together a multitude of the communities’ sports and activities clubs all in one place. Sounds good? Well it gets better. Nearly a quarter of the clubs are offering you a free trial to try out the club before you sign up, so there’s no danger of you forking out a thousand kroner and then turning up to discover nobody wants to speaks English and that the club is just a cover for a biker gang or, possibly even worse, a bunch of grown men burrowing a hole into a couch watching crappy TV shows. And besides you should be able to get a decent impression of the club at the fair, where you’ll have the chance to talk to members about what they can offer you and your family and how to sign up. And don’t forget that joining a sports club or taking a course at one of the evening schools is a great way to meet Danes and fellow expats. The following clubs are offer a free trial session: Brønshøj Judo Club Grøndal Centret, Hvidkildevej 64, 1. Sal, Cph N: open Mon-Fri 17:00-20:30, Sat 10:00-11:30, Sun 12:00-13:30; Judo is a tremendous and dynamic combat sport that demands both physical prowess and great mental discipline. Brønshøj Judo Club offers a wide range of activities: judo sessions for both beginners and experienced, children and adults. The club has sessions reserved for girls, motor coordination workshops for young children, and a well-equipped fitness centre. Copenhagen Celtic FC Valby Idrætspark, Julius Andersens Vej 1, Cph SV; annual membership approx 1000kr;

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Founded in the early 1980s by the legendary Coogan, Copenhagen Celtic consists of players from all four corners of the globe. Apart from being a football club, they offer a social base for their players, many of whom come from outside Denmark. Copenhagen Celtic is an open club and do their best to make all the new players feel welcome. Their differences in background give them a strong sense of unity. New players/ members always very welcome. Copenhagen Lacrosse Valby Idrætspark, Julius Andersens Vej 1, Cph SV; www. Sometimes called the fastest sport on two feet, lacrosse was invented by the North American Indians but is now popular worldwide. The membership fee is quite low. and exchange students get a discount as well. There are two weekly practices, usually Mondays and Wednesdays. All equipment is supplied by the club. And usually a beer or two is had after training for those who like to partake! Københavns Balletskole Struenseegade 15A, Cph N; Ballet is a great way to learn grace, poise, coordination and how to stand on your toes! A free trial class is available for everyone, no matter of their age or level.

Natha Yoga Center Nordre Fasanvej 230, Cph N; Offers an extensive range of activities for the body, soul and mind, teaching Basic Yoga, Tantra, Kashmir Shaivism (non-dualistic philosophy of tantra), Ayurveda (traditional Indian holistic science) and Meditation with dates and times dependent upon which class you endeavour to pursue. There are also assorted free lectures throughout the year so check their website for more details! Nordisk Tai Chi Chuan Forening Gunnar Nu Hansens Plads 7, Cph Ø; open Tue 19:00-21:30, Wed 12:0013:00, Thu 19:00-21:30, Fri 12:00-13:00;

The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010

The Cosmo - International School of Southern Denmark

The Cosmo - International School of Southern Denmark is a private school which attaches importance to professionalism, activity and community spirit set in an international environment using English as the principal language.

Tai Chi has a background dating back to the 16th century and is an excellent activity for both young and old. Training times are dependent upon type and skill level. There is also a social side to the club where they like to hold julefrokosts and sommerfests. Pilates House Vodroffsvej 63, 1900 Frederiksberg; Pilates has gained prominence over the past 15 years or so and is an excellent way to tone and tune up that torso involving proper breathing and spine alignment. It’s very popular with pregnant ladies before and after birth. However, ther’s not so much of a market for the pregnant man … Open seven days a week, so its times can fit anyone’s schedule. SKS (Skovshoved Sejlklub) Skovshoved Havn 7, Charlottenlund; open weekdays 09:30-13:30 (Wed 16:00-19:00); The sailing club can be found 10 km north of Copenhagen on the coast of the Øresund – the nautical position 55º 45” 7’ N - 12º 36” 1’ E for all the sailor wannabes out there, or Skovshoved Havn for you landlubbers. Scandinavian Yoga and Meditation School (Skandinavisk Yoga og Meditationsskole) Købmagergade 65, 1150 Cph K; open Mon-Fri 09:00-12:00 & 14:00-17:00;,, 3334 3536, 2635 3744; dk Find yourself through relaxation, meditation and exercise. Free intro yoga courses are every Friday 17:00-19:00. Once you commit yourself to the three-month programme, there are many weekend retreats that you can participate in. Classes can also be taken in English. KTK86 (Copenhagen Triathlon Club) Institut for Idræt, Nørre Alle 51, 2100 Cph N; 2066 4611, A triathlon club that welcomes both ironmen challengers and beginners, with training both in the summer and winter. Attend their trial day on Saturday 9 October at 9:30am to learn more, or try out their 150-minute free trial on Thursdays, which starts with running practice at 19:30 followed by swimming practice until 22:00. Kevin Evancio

The Cosmo offers three educational programmes, Cambridge International Primary Programme (CIPP), Cambridge Lower Secondary Programme (CLSP) and the International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE). The philosophy of The Cosmo At The Cosmo – International School of Southern Denmark we strive, in collaboration with the parents, to provide a secure atmosphere and caring learning environment as the foundation for the development of the full potential of each individual student. We value cultural diversity, academic excellence and mutual respect, which contribute to the education of future citizens, who weight values as freedom with responsibility and a democratic disposition. We strive for the students to obtaining basic values such as tolerance, integrity and compassion, which can contribute to the development of the students’ self-confidence and independence.

. Sign up now ..

k d . o m s o c e h www.t

Vesterbrogade 6 l DK-6000 Kolding l Tel. +45 7552 0500/+45 2052 0549 l


The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010


The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010















Badminton Club of Copenhagen (Københavns Badminton Klub) Krausesvej 12, 2100 Cph Ø; 3538 7292, The club offers badminton practise for all levels and ages, including badminton for children (3-7) and parents together. The club also has great fitness facilities. 



City hall Pancakes


Dancetide Hvedemarken 19, 3540 Lynge;, 3314 2380, 4818 8396; (in Danish) The members of the Dancetide society for Scottish dancing get together each Monday, as well as taking part in balls, ceilids and other events. For both singles and couples, regardless of experience or proficiency level; membership fees are very reasonable.

City hall Pancakes



Mayor’s Speech




30 City hall Pancakes

City hall Pancakes
























12 11 40 20 13 32 17 18 2 29 28 3 16 24 4 15 5 39 31 6 21

Ajax Amager Skakforening Spousecare /Bollywood Dancing Brønshøj Judo Club Copenhagen Celtic FC Copenhagen Lacrosse Coppenhagen Towers Cultura sem Fronteiras Dancetide Flow Dance Academy Fægteklubben Trekanten Københavns Balletskole Københavns Badminton Klub. Københavns Sportsdykkerklub Music studio /John Harman Copenhagen Netball Club Natha Yoga Center Nordisk Tai Chi Chuan Forening Pan Idræt Pilates House Exiles RUC

Handball Chess Dancing Judo Football Lacrosse American football Brazilian dance Scottish dancing Hip hop Fencing club Ballet Badmiton Diving Piano lessons Netball Yoga & meditation Tai Chi LGBT sports Pilates Rugby Union

Boldklubben Skjold Football SKS Sailing Club Skandinavisk Yoga of Meditations skole Yoga & Meditation Triathlon Triathlon Klub Ørestad Aikido Klub Aikido (Japanese self-defense) Greater organisations (day and evening classes) day and evening classes - classes in english 34-36 AOF ( 3 stande i alt) day and evening classes - classes in english 7 FAMILIESKOLEN•LOF Creative Classes Drama classes in English 8 Scene kunst skoler ARTSTudio ART-n-ME 9 Other Expat in Denmark 38 Integrations ministeriet Integration Ministry 22 Kultur og Fritidsforvaltningen Public organisation 10 Københavns Universitet 33 Letsmeet 14 Københavns Erhvervs CenterKbh. Kommune KEC/Cph international service 1 CPH Post 37 ladies International network København LINK 26 30 19 27 25 23


Copenhagen Scuba Diving Club (Københanvs Sportsdykkerklub), The dives range from relaxing beach dives to investigations of shipwrecks on the ocean floor. The club offers education in CMAS diving, and as a minimum educates people as CMAS**. Pan Idræt 5043 2619,; Copenhagen’s LGBT sports club has more than 700 members playing 20 different sports, including rugby, volleyball, football, amd waterpolo. All abilities are welcome, so as the clubs says: ‘Come and play with us!’ Ørestad Aikido Klub, try Facebook page for info A small club offering regular evening classes twice a week for over 16s in Amager, as well as company training and well-being workshops by demand. Training is offered in Danish, English and Spanish. All levels are welcome. Flow Dance Academy 2369 4434; Hip-hop dancing – everything from b-girling, poppin and locking to krump and waacking – plus some battles, panel discussions, and movie nights. BK Skjold P.H.Lings Alle 10, 2100 Cph Ø; 3525 3525; A Danish football club in Østerbro that offers football to both genders, aged four to 70, be it competitive or recreational. Their top ladies side plays in the women’s top flight. FAMILIESKOLEN•LOF 4580 6700 / 6155 8949; Classes in English include ones for pre-natal yoga and pre-natal pilates, and classes that do not require English include Bollywood dancing, tai chi and ante-natal courses for women. Copenhagen Ballet Academy (Københavns Ballet Akademi) 2063 4211; The academy teaches the International Syllabus of Royal Academy of Dance - a syllabus taught worldwide that means children with prior experience can resume where they left off – to all levels, from kids aged 2½ to the highest vocational level. Copenhagen Towers; 20329 708; Copenhagen Towers is an American Football club located in Gentofte, with both youth and senior teams that compete at the highest possible level here in Denmark. Fægteklubben Trekanten (Trekanten Fencing Club) Ryparkens Idrætsanlæg, Lyngbyvej 110, Cph Ø; 2683 4408,;  Started in 1929, it’s one of the largest and most successful clubs in Scandinavia with many fencers participating in international tournaments around the world. Fencing coaching is provided to all age groups, from children to adults, and to all levels, from beginners to elite, by national and international coaches. ARTSTudio ART-n-ME; 6080 8689 An art studio that provides class and individual tuition in drawing, painting, graphics, collage and design to all ages (four and above), which has a heavy focus on encouraging creativity. Every six months, there is an exhibition, and there are also lots of museum visits. 9

The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010

Try out handball at mighty Ajax Ajax København (Ajax Copenhagen) Bavnehøj Allé 30 2450 Cph SV; 3355 0001:

The 1890s must have been rough on physical education teachers. In both Europe and America they felt compelled to come up with indoor games to occupy kids in the winter months. Everyone knows the one that started in Massachusetts, where a PE teacher put up a peach basket and told students to throw a ball in it (basketball, to be clear). Lesser known around the world is the Danish-devised game in which teams of seven throw a mini-football into a net. It’s called handball, and it’s a thrill for those better with their hands than feet. It’s also exciting because while both basketball and handball involve throwing a round ball into a goal, basketball from its 1891 inception banned rough play, while the Danes seem to have embraced it. A handball shooter is mauled by defenders and usually ends up on his back . With its blend of grace and grit, why doesn’t handball enjoy the exposure of the game that made Michael Jordan the world’s most-recognised athlete? One can’t help wondering if the American television-marketing megalith

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had something to do with it. (Things were different in 1936, when both basketball and handball made their Olympic debut, with Hitler pushing for handball’s inclusion.) Still, handball is a widely played sport, with 800,000 teams around the world and 17 million players. Have a look for yourself by taking in a game during Copenhagen’s dark months. One of Denmark’s best clubs over the past 70 years, Ajax, plays every other weekend at a venue called Bavnehøjhallen at Enghavevej 90. The next game is on 9 October at 6 pm. Admission is only 50 kroner. ‘It’s a very dynamic sport’, explains Ajax director Jannik Hansen. ‘While the popularity of football is going down a bit, because there are so few goals, handball is becoming more popular because there are so many goals.’ In a handball game, each team usually scores between 20 and 30 goals. Internationally, the best teams are German, Spanish and Danish, contends Hansen. Ajax posted its second victory of the new season on Sunday with an impressive 33-25 drubbing of Holte, complete with sprained ankles, lots of sweat and screaming, a player flipped onto his back, and Holte’s

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The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010

coach penalised for running outside of his box. (Had he done this two more times, the match would have been forfeited, according to the official who penalised him.)

However while Ajax have won the Danish championship 18 times since their foundation in 1934, they’ve been struggling in recent years because of funding shortages, continues Hansen. They dropped to the second tier (called the First Division) a few years ago, so this year they’re battling to win their 14-team division so they can jump back up next year to the top league (called Jack & Jones), where they have sat for much of their history.

Small-town teams in Jutland are heavily supported by local businesses that have no other options, so teams can buy better players, Hansen explains. A good player can receive 10,000 kroner per month, he said, adding that half of Ajax players are paid. With an average age of 21 years, Ajax have a lot of promise. “We’ve got about five up-and-coming stars.’ But don’t worry if you’re not a supremely gifted ball-handler. The club has around 800 members in all and they’re not all in contention for the first team. Ajax welcomes all abilities and nationalities, and who knows, maybe they might unearth some latent handball tent you never knew you had. After all, if it wasn’t for the 19th century PE instructors, who knows what would have happened to Michael Jordan. For schedule and results, see Team website By Brendan Cooney

Club director Jannik Hansen (left) and Ajax coach and ex-star Christian Dalmosa (right).


9 OCTOBER - 18.00 Bavnehøjhallen • Enghavevej 90 • København SV Admission: Adults - 50 Dkk / Children: 25 Dkk / Members: free

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The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010

back to class, for love not language ‘Welcome to wonderful Copenhagen.’ You were probably dazzled by the double sidewalks. Perhaps you were surprised by how reasonable Danish prices truly are. That is, until you got yelled at by angry cyclists for strolling along the bike path, and until you realised at the cash register that you were paying per apple, not per pound. And sø, yøu begin tø adapt, crøssing yøur 7s and remembering tø draw the diagønal thrøugh every ø. But you still got it so badly wrong. Adapting to a new country can be difficult, and even overwhelming, when you have to adjust to changes in the climate, food, culture and, of course, the language. And although it may truly be the happiest country in the world, Denmark can still take some getting used to. Participating in a class could be your first fun step in your quest to become the envy of every expat trying to learn the ins and outs of Danish life. And with a growing and vibrant expat community, course providers have realised the necessity to provide enriching classes taught in English. These will allow you to pursue your own interests,

while developing a social network and valuable insight into the Danish culture, without having to throw yourself directly into what most likely sounds like a cacophony of swallowed garble to the newcomer. The adult evening course provider AOF offers a fair selection of classes that are given in English, and at the fair it will be giving demonstrations of their classes in art, photography, French and, rather intriguingly, the ‘habits and manners of the Danes’, a lesson which will be given by an expert in acting and body language. Also on their syllabus are classes in English on vegetarian cooking, Danish culture and habits (presented by a Frenchman), Spanish, quitting smoking, singing, and reggae (which includes modules on the guitar, percussion and DJing), and hundreds of other options in Danish that will probably not require a deep understanding of the language. Every course or class will allow you to gain a different perspective of Danish culture, and to meet people from both the local and international communities. You will learn Danish without the pressure of studying, and rather, let it come on its own without focusing too hard. These classes not only allow you to understand others better, but also yourself, by exploring interests and possibly taking risks. Any class that you take is an opportunity for personal enrichment, through which you can choose to grow. When selecting a class, try to choose a subject about which you are passionate, as yourself will get the most out of a course that is truly meaningful to you, and that you work hard for. Consider trying new activities as well, allowing you to discover new passions and aspirations. Do not let yourself be inhibited by language. Despite the fact that most classes in Denmark are taught in Danish, teachers will often accommodate to suit your needs if they are capable of fulfilling them.

Why don’t you try a cookery course?

Although you are unlikely to become the next top chef, you may be keen to discover that delicious herring (en lækker sild), a Danish delicacy, is also one of the greatest compliments you can give a girl. And although you will be probably never get the chance to learn how to prepare the now obsolete dish, ‘rød grød med fløde’, your fellow Danish cookers are likely to enjoy watching you attempt pronounce this infamous phrase, as you strain to stick out your tongue allowing the sounds to muddle their way out of your mouth.


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The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010

So where do you begin? Do you immediately immerse yourself in the Danish language, taking courses at Berlitz and making feeble attempts to communicating your newly-learned catchphrases to the seemingly aloof Copenhagener? Or do you buy a clipcard and teach yourself how to ride a bike? Both of these exciting methods will allow you to explore a part of Danish culture, as you slowly integrate into society with emphasis on the word ‘slowly’. However, if you decide to take a course through AOF or a similar service, you are likely to gain a more diverse range of tools that will help you grow both as a new Dane and as a person.


Dominique Barir Jensen



• Reliable, dedicated and professional teachers • After school care program/ After school activities • Located in the heart of Copenhagen • Østerbro International School • • Præstøgade 17 • 2100 Copenhagen Ø • • Tel.: +45 70 20 63 68 • E-mail: •

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The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010

A fair old choice for the fairer sex At locations and venues in Greater Cph, and potentially all over Europe; every month of the year, bar possibly January and February Only a few sports can claim they’ve conquered the world. After all, we’re all very different aren’t we, and the sports we favour reflect our culture. The Romans preferred gladiators and chariot races (bloodthirsty), the empirical Brits rugby union and cricket (brutal games for gentlemen) and the Americans basketball, baseball and gridiron (they like improving things). Sport is an indelible link to your culture, and finding that sport in a foreign land is like unlocking a door to your home nation, even if half the members are Danes. And it can be even harder if you’re a woman. Sure, some sports are universally popular, like tennis, badminton and golf, but where are you going to find the pastimes you grew up with? Well here’s some help with a few foreign team sports that have successfully travelled to these shores. BH Rugby union (by Graham Smith) Exiles ladies team, Denmark’s Technical University (DTU), Anker Engelunds Vej 1, 2800 Kgs. Lyngby; for more info call Jo Nissenbaum at 2628 2162; In 2008, after a four-year break, Exiles RUFC, an international rugby club (a 50-50 split between Danes and ex-pats) near Lyngby on the outskirts of Copenhagen, reformed its ladies team to rejoin the Danish women’s championship. The catalyst for this was one girl’s frustration with the lack of team-sports opportunities available to her. While rugby in Denmark isn’t huge, women’s rugby in particular is less so, and persuading girls unfamiliar with the sport to start playing seemed like a hard task. However, the lack of opportunities seems to have worked as an attraction to women that may otherwise have been put off by the physical nature of rugby. Soon, a playing base of one became four, then six, then ten and now stands at around 20. Anni Steffensen, after only six months experience of playing says: ‘I started rugby to improve my fitness, but gained much more. I loved the challenge I’ve had in adjusting to a team sport. It feels really good when your team scores a try.’ To many outsiders,


the game appears brutal. ‘The tackling is not too aggressive, but instead is a crucial aspect of the game,’ continues Steffensen. ‘People unfamiliar with rugby think that the tackling is about hurting your opponents, when really it’s a way to break down an attack and launch a counter-attack.’ ‘It consists of a great mix of people from many different countries and backgrounds,’ says the super-talented Dutch player Berbara Kool, who has played for the Danish national team. ‘I think that’s the reason why you feel welcome from the very beginning.’ Her story is typical of most of the ladies. ‘I came from Holland where rugby gets little attention. It felt unnatural at first, and to some would seem scary, but is in fact a lot of fun. Compared to football where often it will be the people up front that score the goals, in rugby anyone can score a try, and everyone attacks and defends equally, which is what makes the game so cool!’ The Exiles ladies play in the Danish women’s championship - a series of one-day tournaments throughout the year. They train twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Training sessions are run in conjunction with the men’s team, and this creates a great club spirit. After all, playing the game is just one aspect of rugby culture the world over, and Denmark is no different. For many, what started off as merely trying out a new sport has developed into much more. ‘Making new friends isn’t as easy as it was in school,’ says Denize Oktav. ‘Then rugby came up: a sport that fits all sizes and ages.  After my first practice, the girls seemed truly pleased to have me in their team - me, the slowest girl in high school.’ The camaraderie and friendship that Denize and others experienced after joining the Exiles isn’t just restricted to practice and training times. ‘It is a very social club. When we don’t practice, we get together for a night out, house party, BBQ, or a beer in the park.’ And beginners are always welcome. Only four or five of the ladies team had played any form of rugby before, and practice sessions are tailored to suit beginners. Nothing is complicated; most of it is skill-based - learning to catch, pass and run. Although the contact aspect is taught from the

The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010

beginning, it is slowly and gradually built up, and beginners are not asked to tackle until they feel ready. ‘We have girls of all ages, sizes and backgrounds,’ contends ladies captain Jo Nissenbaum. ‘Some have played team-sports, others have never played any sport before. The stereotypical rough and tumble image of a rugby player isn’t necessary here. All we need is for people to approach the sport with an open mind and have fun. Results are an issue for some teams, but all we care about is getting as many people as we can on the field. We play hard on the field and just as hard off it too.’ GS Mixed Netball (by David Smith); membership costs 150kr per quarter, 400kr per year; Netball might be Australia’s number one sport for women, but it’s also popular among men the world over – and for good reason. For expats and their friends in Denmark, Copenhagen Netball Club is not only beneficial for their hand-eye co-ordination and aerobic condition, it’s also a chance to network and get involved in the development of something fresh, new and exciting. From trouncing the Swedes to putting on displays at Roskilde Festival or commentating on TV, there have been many opportunities for netballers to combine fitness and fun with developing new contacts and experiencing some of the best Denmark has to offer. Copenhagen Netball Club’s Wednesday night mixed social competition is on now at Bellahøjhallerne in Brønshøj (starts 19:30). Teams and individuals are welcome - just e-mail the club or check out the website or Facebook group. Copenhagen Netball Club welcomes both new players and seasoned netballers from all backgrounds. Male and female members range in age from 20 to 45 and vary in background, fitness and skill level. Commonly known as a low-contact, women’s derivative of basketball most favoured among the Commonwealth countries, people are often surprised to hear that women’s and mixed netball competitions (where men and women play together) are popular in more than 70 countries around the world, including Denmark. And just as surprising is how easy the game is to learn, given that the results can be so fast, exciting and physically spectacular – particularly when men are involved. It never hurts to add that for formal competitions, the women usually play in skirts. It might be one of the most popular sports in England or Australia, but netball is not just for those who’ve grown up playing it. Club president Michael Bryrup is a Dane who has transferred his defensive skills as a soccer goal keeper to the position of ‘GD’ (goal defence) on the netball court. Michael says that Copenhagen Netball Club has enough Aussie, New Zealand and UK members to ensure that English is the dominant language, but Danish is also spoken on the court among the locals. ‘Most types of ball skills translate well to netball,’ he contends. ‘We’ve had people join who are originally from Spain, Italy, Belgium, Canada, India, South Africa, the US… Some have never played netball before, but we’re always impressed with how quickly they pick it up. Overall, we’ve got a good mix of foreigners and Danes who are looking to combine a good cardio workout with meeting new people. And this year we’re getting involved in tournaments and running some more fun club events to help our members feel at home in Denmark.’ DS Football Boldklubben Skjold, Per Henrik Lings Allé 10, 2100 Cph Ø; contact js@ or 3525 3525 Even football isn’t universally popular around the world. In America it’s soccer and still a game for moms to watch and kids to grow out of, while in India it’s struggled in the shadow of the nation’s massive obsession with cricket. Thankfully that’s not the case in Denmark, but it can be a struggle for women. Popular expat football club Copenhagen Celtic have been considering having a ladies team since the 1980s, but as of now, it’s still on the back-burner, so the only option at present is to join a Danish side like Boldklubben Skjold. It’s handily located in Østerbro and welcomes players of all nationalities and abilities. BH Lacrosse Contact Copenhagen Lacrosse via; www. The oldest lacrosse club in Denmark (founded in 2002) has a women’s team, which plays a spring/summer/autumn season at the Valby Park playing fields. And in late autumn/winter they play indoor. The club welcomes both beginners and experienced players, and if you don´t have your own gear, you can borrow equipment from the club. Gaelic football Holmens Idrætsanlæg, Arsenalvej 2; Copenhagen’s only Gaelic football team, GAA, started a women’s team a couple of years ago, and since then has steadily grown in numbers. Apparently the sport is a hit with former handball players. By Ben Hamilton, Graham Smith and David Smith 15




The Copenhagen Post Expat Fair Supplement - 2010


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