| The exchange began in 1974 and is the longest-running military exchange partnership between any two nations. The yearly exchange promotes good will and sharpens military readiness between the nations as well as provides opportunities for cultural understanding among its participants. While in Norway, the Minnesota National Guard Soldiers and Airmen conduct summer or winter operations training with the Norwegian Home Guard in field training exercises. In winter training they will ski into the mountains and sleep in tents and snow shelters. They will also conduct weapons familiarization with their Norwegian trainers. Summer training centers on moutain survival training. The Soldiers and Airmen will have an opportunity to experience some Norwegian culture as they visit some of the sights of Norway and participate in a “Buddy Weekend,” where they will stay with a Norwegian family.
The Norwegian Home Guard Soldiers are staying at Camp Ripley, Minnesota National Guard’s premier training center. They will be conducting winter training operations with the Minnesota National Guard and will be participating in multiple training exercises. In addition, the Norwegians will stay with a Minnesota family and get the opportunity to experience some local culture.