Norway is a monarchy in the western part of the mountainous Scandinavian peninsula, bordered mostly by Sweden but also by Finland and Russia in the northeast tip of the country. Norway extends 300 miles above the Arctic Circle, the farthest north of any European country.
Norsemen - Norwegian Vikings sailing from Iceland and Greenland - are credited by most experts as being the first Europeans to travel to America, with at least five voyages beginning in 999 A.D. to what is now Labrador, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and possibly New England. Norway's merchant marine is one of the world's largest.
Among famous Norwegian-Americans are Babe Didriksen, Eric Heiden, Elliot Ness, Knute Rockne and Earl Warren.
Norway has the most Olympic Winter Games medals with 280. Eighty-seven of Norway's medals have come in cross-country skiing, and 79 are from speed skating. Norway has twice hosted the Winter Olympics: Lillehammer 1994 and Oslo 1952.
Norway has medal contenders in eight of the 15 Winter Olympic sports, including speed skating, biathlon, Alpine skiing, cross-country skiing, Nordic combined, ski jumping, snowboarding, and curling.