A Royal Affair

A Royal Affair is a biennial fundraiser supporting the College’s Folke Bernadotte Memorial Library.  Started in 1978, this tradition of Gustavus Library Associates (GLA) features live music, silent and live auctions, and a formal dinner.  As a fundraiser, social gathering, and a celebration of the Folke Bernadotte Library, A Royal Affair continues to play an essential role in the growth of the library itself, as well as in the preservation of the library as a celebrated part of the Gustavus community.


A GLA tradition began on April 22, 1978 with the first-ever A Royal Affair.  Held at the Radisson South in Bloomington, Minnesota, the event included silent and live auctions and a formal dinner featuring entertainment.  Never before had GLA or Gustavus produced a fundraising event of such magnitude.  Headed by Patty Lindell and Rhoda Lund, the first A Royal Affair exceeded all expectations and was an immediate success, quickly becoming a well-known biennial event.

The theme for the first gala was An Evening Fit for a King, intended to incorporate the birthday of Swedish King Carl XVI Gustaf.  The title of A Royal Affair emerged at a GLA board meeting and has remained ever since.

From 1978 to 1986, A Royal Affair occurred biennially in the spring.  Due to a conflict of events, GLA decided to hold the sixth fundraiser in November of 1987.  With the change in seasons, A Royal Affair quickly took on a holiday theme, which continues today.

A Royal Affair is still held at its longtime location, although it’s now known as the Sheraton Bloomington Hotel, Minneapolis South.  After 30 years, even the most recent events share similarities with the original.  Guests are greeted with ornate decorations, festive themes, and a bounty of items available for silent and live auctions.  Individuals are also treated to guest speakers, live entertainment, and a delicious formal dinner.

Just as much as it is a tradition of the GLA, A Royal Affair is also a tradition of the Gustavus community.  Each year brings new faces, new themes, and new adventures.  GLA and Gustavus Adolphus College are extremely grateful for each organization and each individual who has been instrumental in supporting such a wonderful event.  Community effort and support allows this beautiful tradition to continue.