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Big Sale

save an extra 10% throughout the showroom August 7-31. Excludes Design Studio resources and Tempur-Pedic

23rd Avenue SW • Fargo • 701.433.3899 •

Located inside HOM Furniture Join us for Coffee with a Designer! Saturday, February 21 from 10:00–11:00am

Rock ‘n Roll Ruby Y0408

Built kid tough Don’t just make your home beautiful, make it last with Wilsonart® laminate. Call today to view our showroom, located in historic downtown Fargo, at 701.799.2181 or visit

When the unexpected happens - we’re here with you

Walk Right In


West Acres Clinic 3902 13th Avenue South | Fargo Monday – Friday 8:00 am - 8:30 pm Saturday 9:00 am - 4:30 pm Sunday 12:00 pm - 4:30 pm

Orthopedics & Sports Medicine Walk-In Clinic 3000 32nd Avenue South | Fargo Monday – Friday 8:15 - 11:30 am & 1:30 - 4:00 pm

West Fargo Clinic 1401 13th Avenue East | West Fargo Monday – Friday 8:00 am - 4:00 pm

Pediatric Walk-In Clinic 1702 South University Dr S | Fargo Monday – Friday 8:00 am - 4:00 pm

52nd Avenue Clinic Opening Soon | 701.364.8900 |

So£t and Luxurious COME SEE OUR NEW SHOWROOM! 2832 SHEYENNE STREET WEST FARGO, ND 58078 | 701-532-3330 | HOURS: MON, WED & FRI 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM | TUES & THURS 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM



We’re ready to make your life better. Stop by a Gate City Bank location, call us at (701) 293-2400 or (800) 423-3344, or visit for more information. 36 locations in North Dakota and western Minnesota. Member FDIC

Because their smiles don’t always tell the real story, we’re here.

Prairie St. John’s is offering a summer of Intensive Outpatient Programs for children who would benefit from a more intensive structure than provided by outpatient services. The groups will include (but not be limited to): • Coping with Trauma • Taming tempers and anger management • Developing friendship skills • Building self esteem • Understanding and expressing emotion The treatment team is multi-disciplinary and includes nursing, therapy, occupational therapy and psychiatry. Call us at 701.476.7200 to learn more. Confidential assessments available 24/7.




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62 48

contents AUGUST.SEPTEMBER 2016



16 Contributors 20 Calendar 32 Jeremiah Project Generation Builders Luncheon 34 Women's Health Conference 36 Plains Art Museum Spring Gala 38 Go Far Woman 40 Pray for Gray 42 All the World's a Stage 44 Fight Back with Joy 46 Why You Should Have a Last Will & Testament 48 Insight into the Experience of Refugee Women 50 An Artist in the Midst 52 Take Me Out to the Ball Game 54 Homeward Animal Shelter 58 Mainstream Boutique 60 Summer to Fall — Fargo Style 62 Photography We Love 66 Where to Shop 70 Show Them How to be Strong 72 Lifelong Migraine Pain 74 Nancy Finds Success 78 Layers of Light 80 Function Meets Beauty 82 Design for Life 90 Cover Story: Christina Hemmer

IL, 8 simple steps to building t.u..11, Thomsen home Schedule an appointment with Thomsen Homes or your favorite Realtor 2. Decide on a home and a location 3 Meet the T homsen Team & design your home in our in-house Design Studio if You sit back while we start building the shell of your home S • Walk through your home and create a customized electrical layout b • Preview your home during finish work 7 • Final walkthrough of your home f • Closing and most importantly, making the house your very own home /

We have simplified the homebuilding process, making it so easy that you can sit back and enjoy the build. Offering homes starting at $200,000 to $450,000's.

Thomsen I Homes ��J24··''

Jessica Metcalf Director of Sales & Marketing

Nate Anderson Thomsen Homes Broker

701.478.3000 °

PUBLISHER Area Woman Publishing, LLC EDITORS IN CHIEF Mike Sherman Becky Sherman PROOFING EDITOR Jill Ockhardt Blaufuss ART DIRECTOR Megan Elgin GRAPHIC DESIGN INTERN Anna Hinsverk

Photo by Abby Anderson

ADVERTISING Mike Sherman 701-306-5119 Debbie Trombley 701-729-1910

Area Woman is a proud member of the Fargo Moorhead West Fargo Chamber of Commerce. It is published bimonthly by Area Woman Publishing, LLC and printed in the U.S.A. ©2016 Area Woman Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written permission from AW. Area Woman is a trademark registered at U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Area Woman Publishing assumes no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts or photographs and does not necessarily agree with content or advertising presented.

FIND US 701-306-5119 READ IT ONLINE PHOTOGRAPHY 5Foot20 Design Lounge Abby Anderson Ben Nash Photography Haney's Photography Jill Ockhardt Blaufuss Kensie Wallner Photography Kylee Dahl Photography Legacy Photography Lindsay Kaye Photography MJOY Photography Mike Smith Rick Westra Rosetta Ann Photography Scherling Photography Thuen Studios


and Thomas Strinden, MD and Steve Bagan, MD FIRST in the region to provide

ADVANCED CUSTOM LASER CATARACT SURGERY Our Surgeons have over 30 years’ experience in Cataract and Implant Surgery and continue to provide the highest level of care for complex eye diseases and surgery.







3011 25th Street South, Suite 1 Fargo, North Dakota 58103 701.280.0088 •




women ’ s


1 Weekend for 1 Hefty Down Payment

up to $3500 for Available Studies. A New Lease on Life.




ENROLL TODAY | K-12 Call for an Educational Consultation.

218.236.0500 Expanded shuttle routes available to and from Horace, West & South Fargo. Free busing in Moorhead.

3037 13th Ave S • Fargo, ND • 701.239.0110



women ’ s


BE A PART OF THE TRADITION Enroll now for 2016-17 school year We are a community that inspires excellence through faith, learning, and service. 3 yr old Little Deacons - 12th Grade For information or a tour call 701-893-3271 HOLY SPIRIT ELEMENTARY




As simple as keeping your word, your promise. Doing what you said you would. Time and time again. Without fail. For years, decades, generations. We’re honored to have been entrusted to serve this community for nearly 100 years.



Summer’s Here. WE CAN HELP! Social Media Marketing

Personal Concierge Cleaning eBay Sales

Contact us at Kathey Llewellyn


CONTRIBUTORS our writers

are the voice of Area Woman Magazine. They bring to life the Fargo-Moorhead area and the incredible stories of the women we feature. These are the talented writers featured in this issue. Learn more about these and our other contributors at

Kim Malakowsky

Alicia Underlee Nelson

Melissa Davidson Marie Laska Joyce Eisenbraun

Amanda Peterson 16

Amy Peterson

Susan A. Stibbe

Redefine Senior Living


page 82

EdgEwood Vista Independent Living | Assisted Living | Memory Care


is a speaker, Bible teacher and Mom-blogger who has spoken in schools, churches, camps and conferences throughout the states and internationally. Rebecca’s passion is to speak to teens and women about their identity in Christ, their worth as children of God, and the freedom found in Jesus. Rebecca also teaches sexual purity to teens and parents, equipping participants with knowledge and practical skills to walk in purity and freedom. In the midst of a culture that suffers the brokenness of families, marriage and sexuality, God has given Rebecca a message of freedom, hope and joy for teens and women. As a blogger, Rebecca reaches out to women, wives and young moms with the hope of a Savior who meets us in the mundane, redeems our moments of weakness, and heals us in our daily brokenness. Rebecca and her husband Paul live in Fargo, ND. Paul is a captain in the Fargo Fire Department and Rebecca is a stay-at-home mom to their four young children. Rebecca is active in her church and loves the outdoors, running, hiking, biking, baking, touring area parks, camping, reading, watching movies, drinking coffee with girlfriends and dating her husband.

701.365.8200 | 4420 37th Ave S | Fargo |




Your donations and purchases provide HOPE and HEALING for the kids at Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch. The Ranch is a residential treatment and educational center for youth and their families (with campuses in Fargo, Bismarck and Minot), a place where we look the most troubled, complex and amazing kids in the eye, walk with them, and help them become their best selves.



. Local thrift stores, local mision

SOUTH FARGO, NORTH FARGO, WEST FARGO, and DILWORTH LOCATIONS. | For donation pickups, call 701-277-9424

Pioneer �ay2016 at


�ugust 27 ó 10:00am - 5:00pm

ENJOY LIVE ENTERTAINMENT by Myron Sommerfeld & his Orchestra, Guitarist & Vocalist Jeff Miller, and others!


Taught by Historian Tom Melville

WATCH THE SILENT FILM "The Great Train Robbery" in Arthur Town Hall


�mmerse Yourself in the PIONEER SPIRIT:

óPlay Games Popular in the 1800s such as the Hoop and Stick Game óBlacksmith Demonstrations óHomemade Ice Cream óExperience Campfire Cooking

1351 west main avenue, west fargo nd • 701.282.2822 •

area LIFE

A CULTURAL OASIS ON THE PRAIRIE, the FM area has a lot to offer. Whether you're looking to take in amazing

art, support your favorite cause, educate yourself on a new topic or get to know your fellow community members better, this issue is chalk-full of amazing articles and great ideas.


SEPTEMBER CALENDAR: ART & EXHIBITIONS Note: All events are subject to change. Confirm dates and times before attending.


Kari Lugo’s photography exhibit, Life, showcases her street photography depicting everyday public life, both urban or rural. Using only her cell phone camera with artistic intent, her work challenges the concept of fine art photography and encourages the viewer to observe the beauty in chance moments in their own lives. Nichole's Fine Pastry 13 8th St S | Fargo 701-232-6430


ART EXHIBIT: TOWN & COUNTRY featuring Lynn Fundingsland

The photographs in local artist Lynn Fundingsland’s exhibit capture the simple beauty of walks along or near the Red River: the slow, meandering river and its gentle landscape provide a meditative presence; the calm waters mirroring the sky and shoreline flora provide a metaphor for the kind of selfreflection many of us feel when near the river. 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM City Hall 200 3rd St N | Fargo Nicole Crutchfield 701-297-7782




ART EXHIBIT: TOWN & COUNTRY featuring Bob Crowe

Known for his plein air landscapes and farmscapes in pastel, charcoal or oil, local artist Bob Crowe’s exhibit can be seen in a special City Hall art exhibit. Drawing inspiration from the landscapes surrounding us, Crowe conveys our connection to nature in the midst of an urban setting along the banks of the Red River and in the middle of an agricultural valley. 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM City Hall 200 3rd St N | Fargo 701-297-7782


A photo and story exhibit featuring area residents who have come to the region from other parts of the U.S. and world. Main Library 102 3rd St N | Fargo 701-241-1472

Shop the best in re-purposed furniture plus vintage, antique and handmade artisan crafts. Eighty vendors from around the Midwest along with great food and DIY workshops. Visit www.fargojunkmarket for more details. 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM BOTH DAYS Scheels Arena 5225 31st Ave S | Fargo


The parade includes entries constructed by HBA of F-M Builder members representing a wide range of home styles and prices in developments around the Fargo-Moorhead area. Bright yellow and blue directional signs and pennants will mark homes participating in the parade. REMODELED HOME TOUR (Sept. 24-25 only) The tour features renovation projects that could include kitchen renovations, main level remodels and basement refreshes. Bright orange and blue directional signs and pennants will mark homes participating in the tour. NOON – 5:00 PM EACH DAY Fargo-Moorhead area developments 701-232-5846


with a

FRIEND! 317 Roberts Street Fargo, ND • 701-232-2493

JUST for KIDS AUGUST 17 & 18


at the Carlson Library (August 17) and the Northport Library (August 18). Kids grades 1–6 can have some fun playing bingo to receive back-to-school supplies at this School Supply Bingo event. No registration is required and snacks will be served. FREE 11:00 AM Dr. James Carlson Library 2801 32nd Ave S | Fargo Northport Library 2714 N. Broadway | Fargo 701-241-1495


Preschoolers will love this science event. All materials will be provided and treats will be served. We’re doing this program three different times on two different days so you can be sure to catch one. Pre-registration is required, call 701-241-1495. FREE THURSDAY, 11 A.M. Dr. James Carlson Library 2801 32nd Ave S | Fargo THURSDAY, 6:30 PM & FRIDAY, 11:00 AM Main Library 102 3rd St N | Fargo


Kids in grades K-6 can sign-up for a 15-minute session to read to a reading therapy pet from Therapy Pets of the Red River Valley starting at 1 p.m. at the Main Library. Pre-registration is required, call 241-1492. FREE 1:00 PM Main Library 102 3rd St N | Fargo

The Complete History of America FAST. FUNNY. PHYSICAL…REDUCING EXPECTATIONS SINCE 1981! Who will be our next President – Donald Trump? Hillary Clinton? Kim Kardashian? In The Complete History of America (abridged): Election Edition, the Reduced Shakespeare Company provides historical context guaranteed to confuse (and amuse) any American voter. You’ll get 600 Years of History in 6,000 seconds! And in this Election Edition, the presidential frontrunners may show up to answer your questions!

Thursday, September 22, 7:30 p.m. Hansen Theatre, Roland Dille Center for the Arts 2016-17 Cheryl Nelson Lossett Performing Arts Series | Purchase tickets online at or call (218) 477-2271 M-F from noon to 4 p.m.

This project is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund. This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. This activity is also supported in part by a grant from the North Dakota Council on the Arts, which receives funding from the state legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Are you planning or attending an upcoming event? Submit local events online at

Minnesota State University Moorhead is an equal opportunity educator and employer and is a member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System.







Sloppy joe, chips, beverage and cookie for a $6 donation, served by U.S. Bank employee volunteers. Money raised will go to the “Operation Salute Our Service Members” program, providing funding for organizations that support military families throughout North Dakota. Color Guard Presentation, National Anthem, and Missing Man Ceremony prior to serving lunch. Planned throughout lunch are speakers, demonstrations, and financial donations to fund local military programs. Call in your “car side to-go” order to 701-280-3500 now through August 10. 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM Two Fargo locations: U.S. Bank Plaza, 2nd Ave N & Broadway and U.S. Bank Service Center, 43rd St SW & 15th Ave

Enjoy a night of hors d’oeuvres, wine sampling, a photo booth, silent auction and a special client story. All proceeds will help local women gain economic independence. Tickets are $30 general admission. A limited number of $60 VIP tickets available which include swag bag, runway seating and champagne. 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM Hilton Garden Inn 4351 17th Ave S | Fargo 701-478-8076


KICKOFF PARTY: American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Against Breast Cancer

Get together to learn information about the upcoming walk in October; how to sign up as a participant, team, or breast cancer survivor; and our mission. 5:30 – 8:00 PM Sidestreet Grille and Pub, 404 4th Ave N | Fargo Tammy Osvold 701-809-8270 or



Golfers from around Fargo-Moorhead can come together at The Meadows to fight back against cancer through the American Cancer Society’s Nine at Night Glow Golf Invitational. Dollars raised help the American Cancer Society save lives by supporting education and prevention efforts, funding groundbreaking cancer research, and providing free information and services for people with cancer who need them. 9:00 PM The Meadows, 401 34th St S | Moorhead 22



Join in fun evening to raise awareness and funds for brain tumor research and help area families affected by brain tumors. Event sponsored by Pray for Gray Foundation. 6:00 PM – 10:30 PM Hilton Garden Inn 4351 17th Ave S | Fargo REGISTER: or 701-799-0414

Out of the Darkness Community Walk in Lindenwood Park. Proceeds benefit local and national suicide prevention and awareness programs of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. CHECK-IN 1:00 PM WALK BEGINS AT 2:00 PM Lindenwood Park 1905 Roger Maris Dr | Fargo 701-371-1194



INSECT POLLINATORS: Catch the Buzz About Bees

In partnership with NDSU and the NDSU Entomology Club, Deirdre PrischmannVoldseth, an NDSU Entomologist, and members of the club will present information and provide various interactive stations for kids to learn about bees. FREE 10:00 AM Dr. James Carlson Library 2801 32nd Ave S | Fargo 701-241-1495

Visit to register to be an eye, tissue, and organ donor. You can be a hero to others!


Hosted by Flint Group, FargoConnect is Fargo-Moorhead’s premier marketing communications and technology event. Now in its third year, the event focuses on providing the area’s students, entrepreneurs, corporate leaders and tech execs with the latest information about communications and technology in a fun, collaborative setting. Attendees leave the event empowered, inspired and with a greater connection to their community. 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM Fargodome 1800 University Dr N | Fargo 701-499-0613



Visit downtown Fargo and see how many flags you can name. Flags will represent the home countries of FM area residents and will be on display all day, every day. Downtown Fargo Contact: Are you planning or attending an upcoming event? Submit local events online at



October 28, 2016 7:00-11:00 PM

Courtyard by Marriott-Moorhead

Wine Tasting sponsored by Cash Wise Liquor-Moorhead, Live & Silent Auctions, Hors d'oeuvres, and Live Entertainment 50 for Single or $90 for Pair $ 600 for Reserved Table of 10


Tickets & information: 701-293-7273 or

Grieve On! Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2016 7-9 p.m. at Ramada Plaza & Suites, Fargo

NEW Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016 7-9 p.m. at Ramada, Grand Forks “ Final Journeys” featuring Maggie Callanan Free and open to the public. No registration required. Daytime conference for health care professionals will be held Wednesday, Oct. 5 in Fargo. For more information: Sponsored in part by:

NEW FOR 2016!

Zip Line • King’s K arpool Competition Renaissance Bingo • Bloody Mary Bar Whiskey & Scotch Tastings • 250 Artisan Booths for Endless Shopping • Over 50 FREE Family Activities • 16 Stages of Entertainment • Food Fit for a King • Live Armored Jousting • Mermaids, Fairies & more Open Weekends August 20 - October 2nd, 2016 Plus Labor Day & Festival Friday, Sept. 30th 9am to 7pm • Rain or Shine • (952) 445-7361

FREE Parking! Discount Tickets Available Online & At Participatings


COMING EVENTS Author. Bible Teacher. Joy-Seeker.

FIGHT back with

britta the photographer


kandel photography

218-477-6500 |




KULTURFEST 10am-5pm | $5 admission | 12 & under free

Shop in the shade at the 160 juried fine arts & original crafts booths for a special gift or chic art piece that you can’t find anywhere else! • • • •

Handmade Jewelry Fine Woodworking Handcrafted Arts & Crafts Stage Entertainment

November 19, 2016 10am-4pm | Free Admission

Island Park • 302 7th Street S

AUGUST 27-28 10am-5pm

202 First Avenue North Moorhead, MN 56560 | (218) 299-5511





Join NDSU English professor Kevin Brooks for a community book discussion on his work, The Latehomecomer: A Hmong Family Memoir, selected as the One Book One Community Read for 2016. The book explores the experience of one immigrant family, a story repeated throughout our community for more than 100 years. We recommend reading the book prior to attending. 6:30 – 8:00 PM Community Education Building Parent Room 1, 1587 30th Ave S | Moorhead Contact:

The 41st Annual Heritage Education Commission Family History Workshop features genealogical author, lecturer, and researcher D. Joshua Taylor of the PBS series Geneology Roadshow. The workshop schedule includes 20 classes for all skill levels. An exhibitor’s hall will provide offerings of history and genealogy books and materials. Workshop cost is $49 and includes four classes of your choice, the workshop syllabus with all handouts, morning and afternoon coffee breaks, and the noon luncheon with preregistration. 8:00 AM TO 4:30 PM Horizon Middle School 3601 12th Ave S | Moorhead 701-799-0912 |




Voices from the FM Community will be a discussion panel on Wednesday September 21. 10:30 – 11:30 AM Concordia College, Moorhead Sonja Wentling,



Open forum on immigration and refugee resettlement hosted by the North Dakota Human Rights Coalition. 7 – 8:30 PM Fargo Public Library 102 3rd St N | Fargo





Event hosted by the New American Consortium for Wellness and Empowerment. 7:00 – 8:30 PM Fargo Public Library 102 3rd St N | Fargo


Learn about the country and culture of India through pictures, festivals, food samples and textiles. There will be a presentation about the history, culture, food, and global migration of people from India as well. All ages. FREE 2:00 PM Main Library, 102 3rd St N | Fargo Diane Briggs 701-241-1492


THE RED RIVER ZOO’S CHALKFEST is the largest art-making event in our community. Create beautiful art throughout the zoo, listen to live music, and enjoy fun activities. Free admission and carousel rides. FREE 1:00 – 8:00 PM Red River Zoo, 4255 23rd Ave S | Fargo 701-277-9240 |

NOW – OCT 29 (Saturdays)

THE RED RIVER MARKET is Fargo-Moorhead's largest farmers market with nearly 50 vendors, offering locally sourced produce, breads, meats, eggs, flowers, coffee, household goods, handmade crafts and ready to eat foods. The market creates a space for all community members to experience the joys of locally produced food. 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM Broadway and 4th Ave N | Fargo 26


This event is hosted by the MOMS Club of Fargo-Moorhead, a support group for at-home moms. Enjoy snacks, activities for children, time with other moms, and an opportunity to learn more about the club. Open to moms and children in the Fargo-Moorhead area. FREE 10:00 – 11:30 AM First Congregational Church of Fargo 1101 13th Ave S | Fargo




The walking, biking, blading, running, wedon't-always-need-to-be-driving event in downtown Fargo-Moorhead brings 3 miles of city streets alive with movement!



Celebrate with this concert at the Main Library featuring the Full Throttle Rattle Brass Quintet. All ages are welcome. Open to the public. FREE 2:00 PM Main Library, 102 3rd St N | Fargo Lori West 701-476-5977 Library 701-241-1492



This event is hosted by the MOMS Club of Fargo-Moorhead, a support group for at-home moms. Enjoy snacks, activities for children, time with other moms, and an opportunity to learn more about the club. Open to moms and children in the Fargo-Moorhead area. FREE 10:30 AM – 12:30 PM Oak Grove Park, 170 Maple St | Fargo QUOTABLE

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1 2 3 4


Long Island Iced Tea

5oz. Wine


"For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. Then you will seek me and find me: when you seek me with all your heart, I will be found by you, declares the Lord." — JEREMIAH 29: 11-14






In conjunction with Fargo-MoorheadWest Fargo Welcoming Week, this free family program will combine live music with artistic instrument making in the Katherine Kilbourne Burgum Center for Creativity. Guest artists will demonstrate instrument making techniques and sounds. Join us and make an instrument out of the world around you! 1:00 – 4:00 PM Plains Art Museum, 704 1st Ave N | Fargo




Inspirational and educational program from oral tradition and sacred scriptures in hopes to strengthening the ideals of peace among all people. Presentation by Jessica Thomasson of Lutheran Social Services and live performance by Ukulele Drive. Sponsored by a multi-faith committee: The FM Baha'i Community, the Presentation Sisters, the Center for Interfaith Projects, and the Unitarian Universalist Church. 4:00 – 5:30 PM Carlson Library/Ed Clapp Senior Center in Fargo, 2801 32nd Ave S | Fargo 701-235-3725 or



Wrap up the community gardening seasons with food and friendship. 5:00 – 7:00 PM Growing Together Community Garden, 4th Ave/25th St S, Fargo

A celebration of all things GermanAmerican. $5 for 13 and older, free to 12 and under when accompanied by paying adult. 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM Hjemkomst Center 202 1st Ave N | Moorhead 218-299-5511


HEADING HOME: A FINAL CELEBRATION at Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch

After 64 years of service, we are celebrating the completion of our Fargo expansion project. Please join us for a ribbon cutting ceremony, open house/ luncheon, campus tours and a celebration service in new chapel. 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch 7151 15th Street S | Fargo


CHARISM & FARGO POLICE MOVIE NIGHT 6:00 – 8:00 PM Jefferson Elementary School 1701 4th Ave S | Fargo


Growing Together and the Cultural Diversity Resource Center will host a community meal harvested from community gardens for hundreds of guests. 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM Rabanus Park 4315 18th Ave SW | Fargo Contact:



Share food and conversation with new Americans, LSS staff and the community. 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM Lutheran Social Services of ND 3911 20th Ave S | Fargo Contact:

Teams representing refugee, immigrant, and local communities will play for the World Cup of Fargo. 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM Jeff Johnson Soccer Complex 1420 11th Ave N | Fargo Contact:





The New American Consortium for Wellness and Empowerment will be celebrating its one year anniversary with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and a community barbeque. 3:30 – 7:00 PM New American Consortium for Wellness and Empowerment, 15 21st St S, Suite 102 | Fargo



Lectures for the 2016-2017 Season are held at the Fargo Holiday Inn. Each lecture begins at 10:30 am. Tickets $30. Available at the door. Entire season lecture tickets $80. For season tickets contact Jan Harrison at 293-6130 .




Former Stars of “Happy Days”

SEPTEMBER 26, 2016


Co-Founder of Big Blue Couch Coaching, LLC

NOVEMBER 7, 2016


Top 10 Movies that Changed America

APRIL 3, 2017


New York Times Bestselling Author of “Girls of Atomic City”

MAY 1, 2017 Find us on Facebook – Fargo Town Hall |

women ’ s help today for a



We BELIEVE that every individual is able to unlock their potential through movement

NEW Occupational Therapy & Sensory Gym

Now enrolling new occupational therapy clients. Set up an appointment by contacting Gymnastics * Special Needs * OT * Cheer S.O.A.R * Birthday Parties * Ninja Kids

Fall Session:


August 22 - October 22 Register online at

women ’ s



Steve Bagan, MD | Sarah Swanholm, OD | Tom Strinden, MD

New Dynamics Counseling

CUTTING EDGE TECHNOLOGY Custom Laser Cataract Surgery Specialists in Eye Disease and Surgery No referrals needed. Most insurances accepted.

4344 20th Ave. S. Fargo | (701) 293-8242

Relationship Counseling | Couples Families | Parenting | Blended Family Dynamics | 701-446-6500




Music Therapy group and 1:1 sessions for INDIVIDUALS, CHILDREN and ADULTS with special needs.

CALL US TODAY • 218.791.0908


Jeremiah Project

GENERATION BUILDERS 2x2 LUNCHEON 2016 Words by Jill Kandel | Photography by Rosetta Holmes


ollowing a silent auction, Robin Huebner welcomed a full house to the Second Annual Generation Builders 2x2 Luncheon. The luncheon, which supports the Fargo-Moorhead area Jeremiah Program, was hosted at the Courtyard by Marriott. The Jeremiah Program, with its mission to end poverty two generations at a time, assists single mothers and their children. A nationally recognized nonprofit with a holistic approach, the Jeremiah Program’s goal is opening a FargoMoorhead campus in 2017.


Mary Lou Dahms, board of trustees chair, and LeDora Wohler, program supervisor at the Nurse Family Partnership of Fargo Cass Public Health, spoke. Wohler said there are three main barriers young single mothers face in the Fargo-Moorhead area: affordable housing, affordable childcare and transportation. “Our community will soon have a Jeremiah Program to help mothers with these barriers and offer a bridge from poverty to self-sufficiency.” Diane Solinger, executive director, spoke about the Jeremiah Program’s two generation strategy which includes support for career track college education, early childhood education, and life skills training. Jeremiah Program graduate Alisha Koerber gave a heartfelt talk about coming into the Jeremiah Program eight years ago. She was alone, scared and pregnant, with a history of drug use and incarceration. “Jeremiah empowerment classes taught me that I was valuable, loveable and important. The staff kept me accountable. I learned life skills, went to college, and got a good job.”



Koerber said, “I’m very happy to be working and supporting myself and my son. I deal with life struggles differently now. I’m thriving. I hope you see in me what your support can do to transform a family.” Trustee Jan Promersberger reminded the audience that Jeremiah Program members are responsible for their own college/educational funding and pay rent. “It’s not a handout, but a hand up.”


[ aw ]


and comfortable clothing for ALL and cute accessories too.

1133 19th Avenue N, Fargo 701-200-2146


Open 9-6 Tuesday-Friday 9-2 Saturday

Find us on Facebook: RedBantyBoutique


HOURS, speakers,



Inspiration and Motivation to North Dakota Women Words by Melissa Davidson | Photography by Kensie Wallner Photography


ach year the Women’s Heath Conference brings solid content and hands-on experiences to North Dakota women, giving them the tools to nurture their minds, bodies and spirits. The 2016 Fargo event, held May 23 at the Ramada, was no exception. Three incredible presenters delivered a substantial dose of inspiration. Melanie Carvell, a triathlete Olympian and physical therapist, showed attendees how get moving and stay motivated to render the healthiest versions of themselves. Amy Dee, motivational speaker, taught women how to generate their horsepower for happiness through everyday decisions. Attendees also learned how to achieve a healthy lifestyle with balanced nutritional tips from Zonya Foco, the author, TV host and nutritional speaker. “We were excited to bring some new types of breakout speakers who offered fresh approaches to health and wellbeing that we’ve never experienced before,” says Anita Hoffarth, one of the 12 local organizers of the event.



I have enjoyed every single minute. I have laughed and cried,

leaving inspired and motivated.


RE-ELECT TIM FLAKOLL a Trusted and Proven Champion for Children Emily Wangen, music therapist and one of the five breakout speakers during the event, allowed women to feel the therapeutic benefits of drumming firsthand. And the benefits of our “North Dakota nice” attitude was taken a bit further by Kelly Meyer, who explained how everyday kindness can truly enhance mental and physical health. The event also included nearly 30 local exhibitors and two preshow workshops the day prior to the event, which covered healthy eating and natural running techniques. “Our goal is to make this great information accessible to our community,” Hoffarth says. “Because we’re all worth it!”

LEARN MORE: 701-271-8190 womenshealthconference

As Chair of the Senate Education Committee, Senator Tim Flakoll is focused on raising the quality of education and NOT raising your taxes. SENATOR FLAKOLL PICTURED with the YOUNGEST GENERATION OF FLAKOLL KIDS. [ aw ]

Paid for by Flakoll for Senate, Laurie Thielman chair


The Plains Art Museum gets


THE SPRING GALA goes back to the


Words by Alicia Underlee Nelson Photography by Dennis Krull, 5Foot20Design Lounge



he Plains Art Museum lobby was full of sequin-clad revelers — and only one of them was a woman. This was destined to be a good party. On May 7, the Plains Art Museum Spring Gala traveled back in time to 1976 to celebrate the museum’s 40th anniversary.

What makes Beans (extra) special? » Fresh, homemade mini donuts on top of every hot beverage » Homemade or fresh from bakery food items » Free refills on brewed coffee in-store » Kid’s area and drive thru » Jazz music every day and Christian music Sundays

A blur of partygoers dressed in leisure suits, platform shoes and flowing empire maxi dresses in aqua and peach sampled lavender infused craft beer, French wine and luscious desserts. There were sparkly, spangled glam rockers chatting by the stairs and bell bottomed beauties in the buffet line with folks dressed as Annie Hall and Tony Manero from “Saturday Night Fever.” “Oh, the outfits are fantastic,” said Karen Kohoutek, who attended the gala for the first time. “It’s really great that people embrace the theme. Life is more beige than it needs to be.”

It’s a party you can feel good about. “If you’re gonna go, go all out,” agreed Plains Art Museum board member Cheri Schoenfish, who hosted the event with her husband, Errol. “And some people are wearing clothes that they wore in the 1970s, which is amazing that they still have them and they can still fit them! And it’s all for a good cause.” The Spring Gala and its silent art auction are the museum’s largest fundraising endeavors. And the atmosphere in the silent auction gallery was just as colorful and charged as on the packed dance floor, where Heart and Soul got the crowd going with rock, funk and soul.

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Words by Kim Malakowsky | Portrait Photography by Kensie Wallner Photography


s Tami Alveshere crosses the finish line in the Go Far Woman Run on August 20th this year, she will cross off another milestone on her personal journey. Her unstoppable spirit is honored by this women-only event formed in 2013. The event, created by director Sue Knutson, celebrates the strength, determination and beauty of women and girls. It was begun to honor her sister Renee who, faced with an unexpected illness, passed away at the young age of 38. Dr. Renee Schwandt had a natural talent for running, played the clarinet, participated in basketball and pursued her goal of becoming a doctor. She gave 110 percent in whatever she did. Dr. Schwandt believed all women should be strong, with a soft heart, a kind soul with grit and determination, and filled with a true love for all those around us. “I wanted to do something in her name,” says Knutson. “She was important not only to me but to so many in the community and the world.” Alveshere exemplifies all those qualities and more. Her journey changed course when shortly after the birth of her daughter, McKenzie, she began having sharp pains in her side. For more than nine years the attacks grew in intensity, but remaining undiagnosed. Then, finally, elevated enzymes indicated Alveshere had chronic pancreatitis. Alveshere’s condition deteriorated, leaving her with a poor quality of life. After researching options together with her doctor, the decision to remove her pancreas was reached.

Photo by Peacock Photography

ABOVE: Tami Alveshere (right) with her daughter, McKenzie RIGHT: Director Sue Knutson


“It was the hardest and scariest decision in my life to have the surgery, as it’s so very rare, especially a few years ago when I had it. There are many people who end up with severe complications after the surgery. I’m one of the lucky ones. I’ve been very blessed in this whole process and know God truly had a hand in all of it.” Following a long, complicated surgery in Tucson, Arizona, at the University of Arizona Medical Center, Alveshere spent over a year recovering. “When you face a battle with such a severe disease thinking you could possibly lose your life, it really makes you realize what is truly important,” she says. Though the surgery improved things drastically, it was not a complete fix. She continues to fight pain flare-ups and occasional fatigue, but her determination keeps her fighting spirit strong. LEFT: A trio in pink heads for the finish line during the 2015 Go Far Woman run.

“Life throws so many obstacles in our way but we can keep fighting through it,” expresses Alveshere. “I see many of my friends in my support group passing away and fighting so many complications, and I refuse to let that happen to me. So I’m believing and going to keep living and fighting.” We’ll be cheering for you, Tami Alveshere, as you cross the Go Far Woman finish line. We’ll be cheering for many others too, each with their own story, their own reasons for being there.

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As she speaks, Knutson gives us a glimpse of a past race. “A young gal passed by, running with her twins in a stroller. Just behind her was a lady pushing her mother in a wheelchair.” We learn the scope of those who come to run. The woman in the wheelchair was in hospice care, but by her own personal strength lived to participate in the race again the following year. Every year women approach Knutson telling tales of strength and determination. Through tears and smiles, bonds are created between runners and one-by-one they bring their daughters, sisters, friends and mothers to run with them. Last year a youth run was added. More than 200 girls ages 12 and under participated. Knutson explains, “There’s nothing like crossing the finish line, no matter how fast or how slow, and getting that medal. It gives the girls a sense of accomplishment.”


he adds, “The Go Far Woman Run is about what we draw from as women to keep going. We like to band together and to support each other. We want everybody to succeed.” Each year the Go Far Woman Run raises money to benefit the Essentia Health NICU, where Dr. Renee Schwandt worked with some of her smallest patients. To date, over $26,000 has been donated.


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courage, HOPE and


H Words by Kim Malakowsky Photography by Dennis Krull, 5foot20 Design Lounge


er bright smile and endearing sense of humor give no clue to the harrowing days and months Julie Fletcher of Ottertail, Minnesota, endured in the late spring and summer of 2007.

On May 23 of that year, Fletcher and husband Rick headed down the highway to Fort Collins, Colorado, after Rick concluded a routine business trip. Plans to spend the night and fly home the next morning quickly changed. With Fletcher at the wheel, Rick instinctively realized something wasn’t right with her and asked her to pull over so he could drive. Hours later with no recollection of the grand mal seizure that occurred, she woke to a room of doctors and nurses unsure of what was taking place. The on-call neurosurgeon soon answered her questions, telling Fletcher and Rick she had a brain tumor the size of a small orange in her right frontal lobe. A week later at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, she was given the choice of postponing surgery until fall, but quickly decided to opt for the next available appointment. On June 21, 2007 a mixed grade four oligoastrocytoma dendroglioma brain tumor was removed from Fletcher’s brain. The news that followed was devastating to Fletcher, Rick, family, and friends. Her doctor advised “start living,” gently explaining she had 12¬–18 months to live.


Fletcher rallied after receiving the difficult news deciding to approach the prognosis with a positive attitude. “I thought there is no other choice,” she explains. “You’ve got to just step it up and say it is what it is and I’m going to enjoy every day and make the best of it.” The next six weeks Fletcher endured radiation therapy followed by six months of chemotherapy. There were times Fletcher would find herself wondering if this was going to be the last time seeing something happen in a particular month. She would ask herself: “Will this be the last year I get to see this crop growing in July? Will this be the last Christmas with my family?” But as the days marched on and no sign of the tumor returned, Fletcher sailed past her prognosis date of 18 months and remains free of the tumor today. During her journey, Fletcher found it important to reach out to others going through the same or similar experience. Being able to find peers and individuals to share their stories of brain cancer, and being able to ask them questions along the way about what to possibly expect, was something Fletcher found helpful and positive.

It was after attending the Minneapolis event Humor to Fight the Tumor that Fletcher developed the idea of forming a nonprofit charity dedicated to brain tumor research in North Dakota. Pray for Gray began in 2008 and will proudly hold its 8th annual gala on September 9. Fletcher is devoted to helping those affected by brain tumors, often connecting those with similar circumstances and offering her own words of encouragement. “I hope I’m living proof for other people to get through the prognosis they are given,” says Fletcher. Fletcher expresses her sentiments saying, “The success of the Pray for Gray Foundation would not be possible without the support of family, friends, volunteers, board and committee members, and all of the sponsors. And I extend a thank you to all whom have helped make this foundation a true success.” “We don’t always get to pick what we’re going through, but we can change our attitude,” Fletcher offers, giving sound advice to anyone going through a difficult illness. “Surround yourself with a good support system of family and friends, have faith, eat as nutritionally as you can, daily exercise if possible, and stay with a mentally positive attitude. Letting oneself be consumed by negativity will only weigh a person down. Embrace your journey and what you are going through head on, simply because there is no other option. Tell yourself you can beat this every single day as I did.” Nine years later, reflecting on the road she has traveled, Fletcher continues writing to her surgeon. She tells him, “Between your professionalism and my good attitude the recipe is perfect. I’m still here and I’m still doing good.”

As the seasons change ... preparing for TOMORROW becomes REALITY.

LEARN MORE: Pray for Gray 8th Annual Gala Friday, September 9, 2016, 6:00 pm Hilton Garden Inn, Fargo, ND Visit to register, read more, or to donate. Proceeds benefit brain tumor research and local families affected by brain cancer.

SERVING WHEN the NEED is GREATEST. 409 South 8th Street, Moorhead •

[ aw ]


all the


a stage

TROLLWOOD PERFORMING ARTS SCHOOL STUDENTS use their talents long after the lights go down Words by Alicia Underlee Nelson | Photography by Dennis Krull, 5foot20 Design Lounge


he young performers singing under the floodlights on the outdoor amphitheater stage and the black-clad technicians scurrying around behind the scenes are just some of the next generation of students who will be initiated into a very special performing arts institution this summer. Trollwood Performing Arts School celebrates its 38th anniversary in 2016. The program began as a youth arts enrichment program in Fargo back in 1978. It has since moved to the Bluestem Center for the Arts in Moorhead, where it continues to delight regional audiences, serve as a pillar of the local arts community, and provide a solid arts education to kids from age 6 through graduating seniors.

Executive Director KATHY ANDERSON


the rigors of working professionally and many alumni are actively working in the film, theater and television industries. You’ll find former Trollwood students dancing, singing, teaching, stage managing, acting, directing and designing across the world, everywhere from community theater and collegiate stages to regional theater and the bright lights of Broadway. Trollwood alumni have appeared at Carnegie Hall, on television and in Hollywood films. And often they return to Moorhead to help train the next generation.

“Those deep roots continue as the foundation of everything we do today,” says Trollwood Performing Arts School Executive Director Kathy Anderson. “For 38 years, thousands of young people have spent their summers learning, growing and making friends at Trollwood.”

Trollwood Performing Arts School employs over 100 staff members each season, many of whom already have a connection to the program. “There is nothing quite as gratifying as hiring those students we trained to come back and be part of our staff,” says Anderson. “In 2015, 34 percent of our workforce were alumni of our programs.”

Most Trollwood students are from Fargo, Moorhead, West Fargo and the surrounding communities, but the program’s reputation for excellence also attracts young artists from across the country, including the Twin Cities, Connecticut, Tennessee, and this summer, even a student from as far away as Norway. A Trollwood education helps prepare students for

Those programs served 1,210 students last year. Trollwood Performing Arts School offers workshops, labs, children’s theater productions and, perhaps most famously, its well-known Mainstage Musical, which is presented as the sun sets over an outdoor amphitheater. “This program features a team of teenagers who stage a Broadway-style musical under the guidance of

professional artists and present one of the region’s largest attended arts events,” says Anderson. “Last summer, over 23,000 people attended performances of ‘Mary Poppins.’”


his year’s Mainstage Musical offered a special treat for audiences, since the show was both a familiar favorite and new to the region. “This summer, we brought to life the underwater world of Disney’s ‘The Little Mermaid,’” says Anderson. “The rights for ‘The Little Mermaid’ were released last fall, so we were one of the first full productions of this new musical to perform in our local area.”


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The chance to see a beloved classic and take in a night of expertly produced musical entertainment is a win-win for musical theater fans and families alike. And the gently rolling hills and fresh air heighten the experience both for audience members and the kids who participate in the educational programs. “Many of these programs take place at the beautiful Bluestem Center for the Arts, where the connection to the natural environment fosters creativity, selfdiscovery and an understanding of a healthy living,” says Anderson. Trollwood Performing Arts School educates children in the arts, but it also helps prepare them to live a productive, fully engaged life. And the Students at Risk (STAR) program makes sure that kids of all income levels are able to enjoy the Trollwood experience. “No child is ever turned away from a program at Trollwood for their inability to pay, which is something our STAR program makes possible,” says Anderson. “It also brings mentors to students, provides meals, transportation and instructional supplies for those students in need.” Trollwood’s Mainstage Musicals take place at the Bluestem Center for the Arts.

FOR MORE DETAILS about their latest production and other Trollwood Performing Arts School programs, go to

[ aw ]


Words by MARIE LASKA Photo of author Margaret Feinberg



A Women’s Fall Retreat with nationally renowned speaker Margaret Feinberg


she’s funny.

She has an amazing gift with words to articulate truth and faith with victory.


“Author. Bible teacher. Joy-seeker.”


hese words headlining the website of nationally-renowned Christian author Margaret Feinberg provide a tiny glimpse into the woman who has been described by Charisma magazine as “one of the 30 voices who will help lead the church in the next decade.” Christianity Today heralded her as “one of 50 women most shaping culture and the church.” A Fargo attendee at one of Feinberg’s Bible studies, “Wonderstruck,” has described Feinberg’s work as life-changing, stating that the study “completely changed her

life” and gave her “a fresh perspective of the presence of God in and around her life.” The women of Hope Lutheran Church of Fargo, located at 3636 25th St. S, are therefore understandably excited to announce that Feinberg has accepted an invitation to headline a women’s retreat on their campus over a two-day period of Oct. 7 and 8, 2016. Running from 7–9 p.m. on Oct. 7 and 9–11:30 a.m. on Oct. 8, the theme of this year’s retreat is “Fight Back with Joy.” Judy Siegle, director of the Women’s Ministry for Hope Lutheran

Church, said the inspiration for the retreat was that “all women can connect with the idea of fighting challenges in their lives and living victoriously.” After hearing Feinberg speak at a conference four years ago, Siegle stated that she was blown away. “She’s real; she’s funny. She has an amazing gift with words to articulate truth and faith with victory.”




Tickets are on sale Sept. 1–25 for $25 for both days (childcare is available if registration is confirmed by Sept. 25), with ticket prices going up to $35 after that. Tickets will be available on an ongoing basis starting Sept. 1 at the Hope Lutheran Church office, Family Christian Store in West Acres, Melberg Christian Book and Gift store in Moorhead, and at the door on the day of the event. Over the course of the two-day retreat, the theme of “Fight Back With Joy” will be carried throughout four separate, thirty-five minute sessions led by Feinberg. In between the sessions the Women’s Ministry will be offering — amongst other activities — coffee, chocolate and time for worship.

FOR MORE INFORMATION on this retreat and on the Hope Lutheran Women’s Ministry in general, please contact the Hope Lutheran Church of Fargo directly at 701-235-6629.

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ith a history of leading conferences such as Catalyst, Thrive, and Women of Joy, Feinberg is a popular speaker and Bible teacher with several books to her name including “The Sacred Echo,” “Wonderstruck,” and “The Organic God,” which, among others, have sold over one million copies. She has been featured on CNN and the Associated Press with national media coverage including stories in the Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post and USA Today. Her work has received rave reviews and critical acclaim. As a breast cancer survivor, she has given voice to her fight through her blog, sharing her struggles and focus on joy and a future, inspiring countless readers and followers along the way.




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hile many people do not have a will, and intestate succession laws have been developed in most states to address situations when people do not have a will upon death, it is advisable for most people to have a will—especially if you have young children and even if you don’t have significant assets. Along with a will, it may be advisable to have a trust as well, either separately or as part of the will, to manage property for beneficiaries after a person’s death. There are plenty of examples of people dying without a will (like the musician Prince), which provide lessons as to why we should take care of these things during our lifetime—so that others don’t have to struggle with it after we are gone. 46

A primary example of when someone should have a will is if the person has young children. Even if parents don’t have significant assets, the guardianship provisions for your children are something that can be set out in a will and should be taken very seriously by parents. Typically, if the husband were to die without a will, his wife would receive his assets. But what happens if both mom and dad die in a car accident or if there are stepchildren involved? These scenarios are why it is imperative to have a will, so a husband and wife can have the serious discussion of who will raise their children if they are gone. The decision can be memorialized in a will, and the same will can set up a trust for managing the assets that mom and dad leave to their children. This is an advisable method because if your children are young, a trust can prevent the child

from receiving a full inheritance earlier than the child is ready for it. It also allows the parents to pick a trustee to make prudent decisions for the children with regard to the assets left for them. It is possible to designate life insurance proceeds to a trust set up in your will for the benefit of your minor children. In the case of parents who are not together (and therefore the risk of both of them dying simultaneously is reduced), it is still advisable to have a will with guardianship provisions, and to establish a trust for the benefit of minor children. Take the example of divorced parents where the mother dies and all of her assets go to her minor children. The ex-husband, as the remaining parent of the children, will effectively have control of the minor children’s assets under state law if they were not left in a trust to regulate them. Even if parents don’t agree who should be the guardian, it is advisable for both parents to list who they desire for the guardian(s) of their children to be. It is best for the parents to make that decision during their lifetimes to avoid the burden on, and potential disputes among family, after their death. [ aw ]

This article was written and prepared by Berly Nelson, a shareholder attorney with the Serkland Law Firm in Fargo, North Dakota. Nelson practices in the areas of commercial and general civil litigation, including a focus on trusts and estate litigation. FOR MORE INFORMATION 701-232-8957 This article should not be considered legal or tax advice and should not be relied upon by any person with respect to his/her specific situation.



PROVIDES INSIGHT INTO THE experience of refugee women Words by Heath Hotzler | Photography by Justin Eller


onix Owino, who was born and raised in Kenya, arrived in Fargo two years ago. It was the middle of winter, and the bitter cold made her feel far from home. She immediately looked for a community of other African women to bring the warmth of friendship into her new life. She met a refugee who had been in Fargo-Moorhead for a decade but couldn’t name a single friend outside of her close family circle. It surprised Owino, who expected the woman to have the strong community ties and friendships that are an important part of African culture. She soon met other female African refugees with similar stories of isolation, misunderstanding and loneliness. The women inspired Owino to research the integration of refugees into the community for her master’s thesis at North Dakota State University. Her research revealed the challenges many refugees face. Now she is sharing her findings so a conversation can start about how to create positive changes that will strengthen the community. “As I visualize it, I want those isolated experiences to end for refugee women,” says Owino, who earned a master’s degree in sociology from NDSU in 2015. “That means people opening their doors, welcoming each other into their hearts. It means people who are living in the same community, who want many of the same things, have to come together. We need to bridge that gap.”


KNOWLEDGE CHANGES LIVES Long before she arrived in Fargo, Owino saw how knowledge can solve problems and make the world better. That’s what motivated her to pursue a master’s degree in sociology at NDSU and to create new knowledge through research.

NDSU Graduate Student JONIX OWINO

She started forming this world view as an undergraduate at a university in Nairobi. She was curious and wanted to know the reasons behind every answer to every question, but she thought of research as a means to an end, an assignment required to earn a grade. Her attitude changed during her senior thesis project about children raised in prison. In Kenya, an incarcerated mother keeps her child with her until suitable arrangements are made or until the age of four, whichever comes first. The importance of her research started to come into focus as Owino studied the developmental differences between children born inside prison and those born to the general African population. Those differences have the potential to negatively affect individuals and society long term.

After earning her undergraduate degree, Owino helped a nonprofit women’s organization document the stories of women who suffered trauma and abuse. Through that experience she became aware that many government projects and programs in Africa started with good intentions but lacked followthrough due to a lack of research.

We are all human beings and we can do a lot together, learn a lot from each other... THIS CAN HELP BUILD

a better community. “If you want something to change, you have to have the facts to back up your solution,” Owino says.

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MAKING A DIFFERENCE Owino’s graduate research has given her the ability to make a difference in the lives of refugee women and the community by using her strengths as an applied scientist. She found that refugee women in FargoMoorhead looked at the community as a safe haven, a place that took them in after they faced the horrors of war, death and poverty in their home countries. They weren’t being mistreated. The women were often overlooked and misunderstood. Many times a language barrier made it difficult to communicate. Many people Owino talked with in the nonrefugee population also didn’t know much about African refugee culture and customs. Her research titled “The Silent Narratives” was recently featured in the North Dakota Humanities Council magazine’s issue on new Americans. She’s still in touch with the women she interviewed and plans to continue using her research to have a positive effect on the community.

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Female African refugees can play a vital role in Fargo-Moorhead, Owino says. They contribute new talent and new perspectives. “There is a group of people in the United States, and in our own community, that people don’t know or understand,” Owino says of the area’s refugee population. “But we are all human beings and we can do a lot together, learn a lot from each other. This study can be the start of the conversation. This can help build a better community.” [ aw ]

Call 701-373-7114


an artist

in the




hen you’ve lived your whole life surrounded by the same walls, it’s necessary to have an escape plan. For 17-year-old Thea Schermerhorn, that plan involves a pencil, some paper and a big dose of talent. “I like art because it’s kind of an escape for the moment. I can be somewhere else or within the piece as I create it.” Along with two older brothers and an older sister, Schermerhorn has spent her growing-up years discovering what it is that makes her tick. Turns out she has a knack for a variety of things including skateboarding, video games and cars. But one thing that has been there since the beginning is a desire to draw and create with her hands. “Art has intrigued me ever since I can remember. I would draw all the time as a kid and still do now. I would draw anything and usually give what I would create to my mom,” Schermerhorn said. “I love starting with nothing and taking the weirdest idea and ending up with something amazing.” Like many artists, Schermerhorn finds the creative process is best attempted on her own timetable. So when an opportunity came up for her to create a piece at the Second Annual Kiwanis Regional High School Visual Arts Exhibition, which was held during MSUM’s annual Visual and Media Arts workshop day this past January, she wasn’t sure how to start. “For some reason being creative under pressure


doesn’t go well with me. I would sit down to work on it and my ideas were dry; for weeks I had nothing. I was at work joking with my buddies on how weird the eggplant is and how like, no one buys them. That night I went home and was like, ‘Hey I should draw a hand holding an eggplant.’ I was doing what I love and freely creating art with no pressure and that’s how the eggplant turned out so rad.” Schermerhorn received on honorable mention for her drawing, and was able to participate in hands-on workshops with over 200 students from 24 high schools around the region. Two people in particular, have played a role in inspiring her to create art. Moorhead High School art teachers Mr. Carlson and Mr. Dunn “both love what they do and have such a unique perspective,” Schermerhorn said. “I have never been a confident artist, and Mr. Carlson has always encouraged me and pushes me to be better, which I feel has greatly impacted me.” She said their love for what they do and their desire to continue improving their talent inspires her to do the same.

I LIKE ART because it’s kind of

an escape for the moment.

As for her future as an artist, Schermerhorn said, “I love art. I love creating art, but I do not see myself living off art. I love being able to do it when I feel inspired, but not as a job. I would like to attend a college for auto mechanics and car fabrication. I love everything that goes into a vehicle.” Pursuing such a career would give her a chance to combine her passion for cars with her artistic eye. “What you see all around you everyday is what inspires me to create art,” Schermerhorn said. “To me, it’s taking your average eggplant and creating the perspective and twist you own on it. When I observe your everyday life, I see more than what’s there and that inspires me to lay it out so others can view it the way I do.” The world needs more people that are willing to use their gifts to create something beautiful and unique. Schermerhorn is just such a person. [ aw ]


take me out to the


Words by Susan A. Stibbe | Photography by Dennis Krull, 5foot20 Design Lounge


he Fargo American Legion Post 2 Jack Williams Stadium is turning 50! The lights first turned on at the stadium in June 1966. It has always been considered a true jewel of American Legion Baseball stadiums in the country. The stadium, at 1137 Elm St. N. in Fargo, is one of the few Legionowned and Legion-operated stadiums of such quality in the entire United States.

The stadium was named for veteran North Dakota American Legion department adjutant Jack Williams, a manager of amateur baseball teams prior to his service during World War I. He was one of the originators and great supporters of American Legion Baseball. He died in June 1967. But his name lives on in the hearts and minds of all Legion Baseball players, parents, and fans who affectionately refer to “his” stadium as “Jack.”


“Jack has a wonderful baseball tradition and most boys want to live that tradition,” says Pam Birch, a mother whose oldest son, Colin, played here and whose younger son, Cole, is in his second year on the varsity team, one of the three Legion teams that call Jack home. “There is something about this field. Kids from all over Fargo come together here to play as a team and form lifelong friendships,” she continues. Laurie McKeever’s son, Jacob, is starting his first year with the Legion program. “As a new family, we are excited to be a part of this program and this tradition,” she says. Both Birch and McKeever have spent a considerable amount of time at Jack, watching their sons play as they came up the ranks of Legion Baseball. They have also worked at the site when Fargo Post 2 has hosted tournaments.


ccording to the post’s website, Jack Williams Stadium, which was built exclusively for American Legion Baseball, received rave reviews when Post 2 first hosted the American Legion Baseball World Series in 1983. Legion officials and fans were awestruck again in 1992 when nearly $100,000 worth of improvements and additions could be seen at Fargo’s second World Series. About 100 games are played in the months of June and July, including anywhere from two to five tournaments, but not including full practice schedules for both Fargo American Legion teams. “Jack Williams is why kids from all over Fargo want to come and play here,” says Birch. “Kids who come to this program love baseball and are willing to do the field work. They practice every day.” “If they don’t love it, they are not going to make the commitment,” says Laurie. “We will continue to have success here at Jack because of that commitment.”

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It is always a great experience for baseball fans to sit and enjoy a game at the beautiful jewel box that is the Jack Williams Stadium. After all, it is America’s game and certainly Fargo’s favorite. [ aw ]

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Laurie McKeever (left) and Pam Birch (right)

“It has been a great experience!” Birch says. “We will really miss it when we’re done.”

Observe Remotely! 701.373.0397 888.99.ARVIG | ©Arvig 2016. This institution is an equal opportunity provider and employer.





he pawsibilites are endless when you open your heart… Are you ready to open your heart to a shelter pet? If you can’t adopt, you can still support the shelter animals in a number of ways: donate, foster or volunteer. Remember, a shelter pet is waiting to share its love with YOU!


animal shelter







STARK 1201 28th Ave N | Fargo 701-239-0077 Homeward Animal Shelter is a local and community-funded, nonprofit animal shelter. Its mission is: “Rescue. Shelter. Protect. Rehome.� It provides a second chance at happiness to lost, abandoned and owner-surrendered animals and educates the community in the proper, loving and kind treatment of animals.




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area STYLE

FINDING PIECES TO GRADUALLY TAKE YOUR WARDROBE FROM SUMMER TO FALL will never be easier than this month. Savvy advice from our own fashionist Alicia Underlee Nelson plus tips on where to shop, and a great article on an amazing local boutique owner fill the pages of our style section.

It gives me a real


something I’ve worked for. — HOLLIE NELSON

Words by Kim Malakowsky | Photography by Kensie Wallner Photography


ith an eye for fashion and an entrepreneurial spirit, Hollie Nelson left behind a job as an occupational therapist and donned the hat of a boutique owner.

New to the world of retail, Mainstream Boutique offered Nelson the comfort of not going it entirely alone. After researching many options for her new business venture, Nelson knew this would be a good fit. Mainstream Boutique, with corporate offices in nearby Minneapolis, MN, has branched out to 72 stores in 20 states, giving Nelson support when needed, a network of other boutique owners to share ideas with, and workshops and monthly meetings to cover everything else. Aside from a little support, Nelson is clearly “in the drivers seat,” one of the things that appeals most to her. “It’s mine,” exclaims Nelson. “It gives me a real sense of pride—something I’ve worked for.”


Mainstream Boutique sits near the busy intersection of 25th Street and 32nd Avenue in south Fargo, giving easy access to its many loyal customers. Once inside, you’re greeted with a friendly smile and knowledgeable staff. It’s immediately evident the experience will be much more than an ordinary shopping trip. Nelson and her staff of five make Mainstream Boutique feel like a little neighborhood shop where customers become friends and staff members know their clients’ likes and dislikes, often pointing them to something they’re sure they will love. The mood is casual and friendly and it’s easy to linger among the beautiful items. The boutique carries a unique collection of clothing, shoes and accessories. Nelson does the purchasing for the store. While she has a keen eye, she draws not only on her own personal taste, but also incorporates the knowledge she has of her clients’ tastes. One source of pride is a lean toward multi-generational merchandise. As Nelson explains, a transitional piece of clothing can be worn across

generations depending on how it’s styled. “We have something for everyone ages 18-80!” says Nelson. “Sizes range from XS to 1X and sometimes larger.” As a mother and stepmother, Nelson enjoys seeing mothers and daughters shopping together at the boutique.


ike many boutiques, quantities of a single item are limited and items can move fast. Social media has begun to play an important role at Mainstream Boutique. New inventory is shown on Facebook as it comes into the store and savvy shoppers watch for favorites. Nelson embraces the interaction social media has made possible. It’s important to her to know customers as friends and neighbors. Community involvement and support also play an important role at Mainstream Boutique. Nelson organizes store specials where a portion of the proceeds goes to local charities. Last year, Mainstream Boutique supported Giving Hearts Day and the Rape and Abuse Crisis Center. In addition, a clothing drive was organized benefitting Matthew’s Voice Project. With three years under her belt, what can we expect to see in the future? “More of our own lines,” says Nelson. “Founder Marie DeNicola has introduced a new line, Mac and Me, named for her daughter Mikayla.” The mission of Mac and Me is to offer a collection of on-trend items that customers love. Merchandise consists of denim, seamless wear, accessories and casual wear. The new line is showing great promise and will continue to expand, giving you one more reason to stop in the little neighborhood boutique and linger for awhile.

MAINSTREAM BOUTIQUE 2603 Kirsten Lane S | Fargo 701-356-6684 Monday – Friday: 10 AM – 6 PM Saturday: 10 AM – 5 PM Summer Saturdays (Memorial Day – Labor Day): 10 AM – 3 PM

Last Days

ofSummer 2603 KIRSTEN LN. S #103 | FARGO, ND


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fargo style

Words and Photography by ALICIA UNDERLEE NELSON

Warm days and cool nights require a wardrobe that can do double duty. Take your closet from summer to fall with key transition pieces from a few of our favorite downtown Fargo boutiques.


LACE DRESS A lace dress is a flirty, feminine statement piece that can look romantic or bohemian, depending on how it’s styled. Try it with bare legs and flat sandals when the weather’s warm and opaque tights and ankle boots when the mercury drops. A cropped leather or faded denim jacket gets that mix of sweet and street just right.



PLAID BUTTON DOWN This unassuming layering piece works for summer music festivals and fall bonfires. Pick a plaid you love (ideally one containing a color that shows up elsewhere in your closet) and rock it with jeans, over a flirty dress, as a bathing suit cover-up or tucked into a pencil skirt for work.

LOT 2029

BOOTIES Sandals are great summer shoes, but not if you’re going to be in a crowd. Booties with a cut-out detail protect your toes at outdoor concerts and farmers markets and keep your feet cool. And they look great with tights all fall and winter long.


CHUNKY KNIT SWEATER A cozy sweater is a must-have for fall, but it’s surprisingly useful during the last days of summer as well. Throw it over jean shorts on a chilly night or layer it over a filmy skirt on those exasperating summer days that dawn close to freezing and heat up to roasting by noon.

BLACK JEANS Wide leg, high-waisted or cropped, gaucho style jeans are on-trend for summer and will transition seamlessly into fall when paired with a comfy sweater or soft wrap. The ultra dark wash makes even trendy cuts seem polished, so try black denim with a tailored blazer or classic cashmere for an updated casual Friday look. SHANNALEE

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Kensie Wallner Photography

for i have found THE ONE WHOM

mt soul lovew


Abby Anderson


Scherling Photography



Lindsay Kaye Photography

Jill Ockhardt Blaufuss


Lindsay Kaye Photography

Jill Ockhardt Blaufuss

THE SOUL IS HEALED by being with children

Kensie Wallner Photography

Scherling Photography


capturing the first moments first breath. first cry. love at first sight.

Jill Ockhardt Blaufuss

birth stories captured through photo and video 701.491.8050 •

dream BIG




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where to




2603 Kirsten Ln S #103 | Fargo 701-356-6684

510 Center Ave | Moorhead 218-236-6000 |

Our Mac and Me Dress with bell sleeves and neutral colors


Eczema can be worse in late summer and fall. Your natural alternative is Emily Skin Soothers.  Made with beeswax, calming oils and healing herbs.  Safe for your entire family. 1111 Westrac Dr #201 | Fargo 701-566-3872

Finally, a stencil for your eyebrows! Create perfect, natural eyebrows in seconds with Belle Madame eyebrow make-up and stencils.


Shaw floors Carpet Stain and Soil Remover safely cleans the toughest stains (such as fruit juice, oil, ketchup, wine, coffee, salsa) from carpet and other water-safe fabrics. It protects against future oily stains and soiling by penetrating and safguarding the fabric with R2X repellent. 2832 Sheyenne St | West Fargo 701-532-3330 |


Mouth-watering Fat Toad Farms caramel pairs excellent with our fine artisan cheese at Pinch & Pour in Downtown Fargo. 219 Broadway N | Fargo 701-356-7779 66


Stasher, an innovative alternative to plastic baggies and containers, is a reusable, pinch-press seal bag made of food-grade silicone and is safe for the dishwasher, microwave and freezer. Rethink plastic, and embrace the change by picking up your own Stasher bag today at Heirlooms Thrift & Gift! 3120 25th St S | Fargo | 701-356-2670 Mon – Fri 9am – 6pm, Sat 9am – 5pm, Closed Sun

FUSION BOUTIQUE cass county historical society


Looking for a unique gift? Visit the Bonanzaville Gift Shop for t-shirts, jewelry, hand-made items such as dish towels, antique telephone insulator candles, and much more!

Experience casual luxury. Latico's signature leather handbags are designed with an emphasis on simple silhouettes and quality craftsmanship for a truly timeless look. Shop a unique mix of colors and styles including totes, crossbody bags, clutches, and more. Located inside Scheels Home & Hardware 3203 13th Ave S | Fargo 701-232-8903

For SALE spacious Prairiewood Dr S Fargo townhouse with over 3000 sq ft living space. Comes beautifully and fully furnished.

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Call Gordy 701.367.0710 Leave message if no answer.


S'well Bottle: Sophisticated and tough water bottles made from double walled, insulated stainless steel keeps your water cold for 24 hours and your coffee hot for 12 hours. 219 Broadway N, #101 | Fargo | 701-356-7778


A full service pharmacy including immunizations and pet medications. Now carrying Crystal Rock Healing Essential Oils for you and your pets. Located inside Costco 750 23rd Ave E | West Fargo 701-281-2222



Friday, September 9th

Copyright © 2015 Joseph Ribkoff Inc. All rights reserved. Any reproduction and/or use of the Joseph Ribkoff logo for commercial or promotional purposes is forbidden without the written authorization of Joseph Ribkoff Inc.

10:00 am – 6:00 pm

SOUTH CREEK CENTER 32nd Avenue & 25th Street [starbucks corner]




Read on about how strong minds, bodies and the help of amazing health care providers helped these women overcome debilitating migraines, high risk brain surgery and diabetes.

show them how to be


The 2016–2017 CMN Champion Words by Erin Heinert | Photography by Mike Smith

Talia Hay is a special young girl showing sick kids how to be strong as the 2016/2017 Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals North Dakota Champion.


alia Hay’s hair is much shorter than it used to be. The strands of dark curls have regrown, covering her head and the scar that now winds its way from above her left ear up and over to the right side of her forehead. You’d never know it was there or that less than nine months ago, Talia was in a helicopter being rushed to Fargo for an emergency craniotomy.


“The school nurse called me at work,” remembers Talia’s dad, Alfonzo. “She said Talia was acting out, and I was like, ‘My daughter?’ That’s just not her. So I’m driving to school when I get another phone call saying that she is in and out of consciousness. At this point I start panicking.” First responders took Talia to the hospital in Grand Forks where a CT scan discovered the blood on her brain. She was immediately flown to Sanford Children’s in Fargo.

“All I remember is that the doctors said there was a cluster of blood vessels in my brain,” says Talia. “And I could have had them all my life without even knowing, but they just popped.”

“My wife and I drove to Fargo so Talia got there before we did,” says Alfonzo. “And on the way, the doctors at Sanford called us and said that they needed to do surgery. And we said that was fine. Just do whatever it took to help our daughter.”

Talia had an arteriovenous malformation, or AVM, which is a tangle of abnormal blood vessels connecting arteries and veins in the brain. And as Talia’s did, these tangles can rupture, causing blood to flow into the brain.

Dr. Alexander Drofa, North Dakota’s only endovascular neurosurgeon at the Sanford Brain and Spine Center in Fargo, along with a team of specially trained providers performed the complex and high-risk surgery.


alia spent a total of 11 days at Sanford Children’s. Many questions had to be answered about her brain function. Could she still feel her toes? Her fingers? Would there be damage to her speech? “Those 11 days taught us how to pray,” says Michelle, Talia’s mom. “I’m very big on planning but we had to step back and go hour by hour. And any little breakthrough, her first step, the first time she talked, it was a huge accomplishment.” Because of Dr. Drofa’s expertise and the advanced tools and equipment at Sanford, Talia received the exact care she needed. The center has a dedicated inpatient neurosciences unit, prepared to handle life-threatening conditions like Talia’s. And because of Talia’s determination to get better, she was chosen as the 2016/2017 Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals North Dakota Champion.

She can tell her story to kids, show them how to be strong,

and matbe


to fight a little harder. MICHELLE HAY, Talia's Mom

When Mourning Dawns “When Mourning Dawns” is our six-week series that looks at the seasons of the year to guide our conversations about the seasons of your grief. Preregistration is required and space is limited. Please call or email us if you have questions or interest in this series.

“She went through a lot and fought through it all,” says Talia’s younger sister Emelia. “I feel like she’s such a good example of staying strong through everything when all she wanted to do was go home. So I think she’ll be a really good champion for other kids to look to.”

FALL DATES FOR OUR NEXT SERIES: SEPTEMBER 19 – OCTOBER 24 from 6:00 – 7:15 PM each Monday.

“The staff at Sanford Children’s was amazing and for them to nominate Talia for this was a real honor,” says Michelle. “And the fact that she can tell her story to kids, show them how to be strong, and maybe that will make them want to fight a little harder.” [ aw ]

for more info: This series is led by our Grief Support Coordinators Ann Jacobson and Sonja Kjar.





Words by Amanda Peterson | Photography by Dennis Krull, 5foot20 Design Lounge

Dr. Ghazi has helped me the most in the shortest amount of time than anybody in my life. He truly wants to help me and cares about me.



— CASSANDRA ERICKSON, Center for Pain Medicine patient

assandra Erickson of Fargo was first diagnosed with migraines at the age of two.

As her headaches, neck pain and back pain worsened over the years, she tried an ever-growing list of medications, therapies and procedures—desperate for relief. Erickson, a 30-yearold pharmacy technician, went from doctor to doctor and clinic to clinic, even seeking help at Mayo Clinic in Rochester. She tried pain medications, physical therapy, chiropractic care, traction, holistic medicine, acupuncture, an acustaple (a tiny surgical staple placed in her ear cartilage to treat migraines), a mouth guard to alleviate jaw clenching, and dry needling (a Western medical therapy using needles similar to those used in acupuncture). The list went on. Nothing rid her of the debilitating pain. 72

Last fall, a local family receiving migraine care for their teenage daughter referred Erickson to the Center for Pain Medicine. The center, opened by Dr. Majid Ghazi in 2014, offers a wide variety of personalized treatments for common painful conditions such as headaches, neck pain and back pain. Erickson immediately scheduled an appointment with Ghazi.

During that appointment, Ghazi began mapping out treatments specific to Erickson’s condition. Right away, he suggested doing an occipital nerve block, an injection of medication in the back of the head to reduce inflammation in the nerves triggering her migraines. Erickson happily endured a few seconds of additional pain for what she describes as instant relief.

It was a call that would change her life.

She returned to the clinic the next day to have the same type of block done on the other side of her head. The effect wasn’t as extreme, but still a help, she says. Though the blocks are only temporary (usually lasting a few months) and she will need them regularly, Erickson says they are key to helping her regulate the pain.

“Dr. Ghazi sat and listened to my whole story,” Erickson says. “He didn’t interrupt me. He didn’t say my pain was fake or that I shouldn’t be feeling pain. People my whole life have been telling me this is all just in my head.”


he blocks are only one part of the plan Ghazi is creating for Erickson. He’s layering several different treatments, including physical therapy, traction, Botox, dry needling, additional nerve blocks, epidurals, neurostimulation, trigger-point injections and nerve ablations (destroying a nerve to remove pain). It’s an approach Ghazi says is crucial in helping patients. “Some centers believe only in injections or medications,” says Ghazi. “We think patients receive benefits from a multi-disciplinary approach. Every patient has a different problem. You can’t come up with a recipe that fits everyone. You have to spend time with patients and then come up with a diagnosis and treatment.” Even his approach with each of these techniques is different from what Erickson has experienced in the past. While two rounds of Botox treatments with different providers were very painful, Erickson says Ghazi’s were gentle and nearly pain-free. When Erickson was ready to give up trying to treat her neck pain, Ghazi refused. He asked more questions and found out an MRI had never been done on her neck. He ordered one right away. It revealed two herniated discs which need to be treated. Erickson credits Ghazi’s willingness to listen and overall concern for his patients with helping her finally find pain relief. She says all eight staff show the same compassion. “Dr. Ghazi has helped me the most in the shortest amount of time than anybody in my life,” Erickson says. “He truly wants to help me and cares about me. He’s my miracle doctor.”

FOR MORE INFORMATION 701-551-6980 2829 S. University Drive Suite 201, Fargo

Amy Hestbeck, NP Board Certified

Majid Ghazi, MD Board Certified in Pain Medicine Board Certified in Anesthesiology

Specializing in BACK PAIN and HEADACHES

701.551.6980 | —

no referral required by most insurances

experience MATTERS

SPECIALISTS IN the treatment of: myofascial pain & dry needling all staff comprehensively trained and certified

headaches neck & back care hand therapy orthopedics (shoulder, hip, knee, ankle)

2829 University Drive S Fargo, ND 58103

701.478.7868 [ aw ]



hen Nancy Olson was diagnosed with diabetes last November, she knew she had to do something. Both her mother and grandmother had suffered from the chronic disease and her mother died at age 41. “I thought it was a death sentence,” the 44-year-old Fargo woman says. “I didn’t want to be diabetic and end up like my mother.” So Olson decided to change her eating habits and her lifestyle. With help from her health care team at Essentia Health’s South University Clinic in Fargo, she’s lost more than 40 pounds and dropped her blood sugar level to below what’s considered to be diabetic. Her cholesterol is also down. On a recent shopping trip, Olson discovered she’d dropped five sizes in pants. “As I zipped those 16Ws up, I prayed to God that they’d fit,” she recalls. “I was in tears because it felt so good to get into that size.” To help meet her goal of boosting her physical activity, Nancy Olson walks a trail near her Fargo home. It’s one part of her plan to better manage her diabetes.


findw success in losing weight and

MANAGING DIABETES Words by Connie Wirta Photo by Scott Thuen of Thuen Studios

Like many women, Olson had tried to lose weight before. She says she found success by working with her family medicine nurse practitioner, Penni Weston, and Jenny Bednar, a dietitian and diabetes educator. “They told me I could manage my diabetes and live with it—that it’s not a death sentence,” Olson says. “It’s a lifestyle change, not a diet.” “I let Nancy know that she can live a full and long life is she’s doing a few things right,” says Weston. “Losing weight was the number one thing. If you lose just 10 percent of your body weight, it has a huge impact on your overall health and numbers.” Weston and Bednar counseled Olson to set small goals so she wouldn’t get discouraged. They also helped her develop a plan for eating and exercise. “They educated me on what I needed to do and how to do it,” Olson says. “They took time to learn about me as a person and listened to my concerns. They explained things to me in layman’s terms, not big fancy medical terms.” Olson was surprised when Jenny told her she needed to snack three times a day to better regulate her blood sugar levels and make her feel more full. “What! Snacking?” Olson says. “I thought snacking is bad because you’re putting food in your mouth and getting fatter.” The key, Bednar explains, is small snacks packed with protein, such as an apple with peanut butter or low-fat cottage cheese on a cracker. Not a bag of chips. “Eat more protein than carbs,” Olson says, adding that learning how to count carbohydrates has been critical to her success. Bednar explains the system counts each 15 grams of carbohydrates as one carb serving. “Eating carbs isn’t bad, but this helps get an appropriate portion size,” the dietitian explains. For example, Olson’s plan allows her eat 165 grams of carbohydrates a day, which is 11 carb servings.


Olson says these

TIPS & ADVICE HAVE HELPED HER: ww You don’t have to give up all your favorite foods, just eat them in moderation. “I can still have pizza but Jenny says get a thin crust or don’t eat the crust. Have a hardshell taco instead of a soft-shell and get chicken instead of beef.” ww Eat less fast food and drink less soda pop. ww Know when to stop. Don’t eat until you’re full, eat until you’re satisfied. ww You don’t need to clean your plate anymore. Take half your restaurant meal home for tomorrow. ww Plan your meals so you’re not hungry when you’re deciding what to eat. Working the night shift as a fraud representative at a bank gave Olson an excuse for not exercising. She also works seasonally for a window-cleaning service. Now she’s finding ways to boost her physical activity. For example, Olson has set a goal to walk from her apartment near 25th Avenue South to her brother’s house at 62nd Avenue South. She’s already made it to 40th Avenue South via a bike trail. Olson says she’s learned to set “baby goals” so she doesn’t get discouraged. She aims to lose a pound a week and now wants to get below 200 pounds. She also wants to get off her medications for diabetes and high cholesterol.


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Sunday, September 18th

Fargo/Moorhead Community Walk | Lindenwood Park REGISTRATION BEGINS AT 1 PM | WALK STARTS AT 2 PM


~ Audrey Hepburn


Olson says her team helps her stay on track with their support and encouragement. She regularly emails them questions via Essentia’s MyHealth. “We’re cheerleaders for her,” Weston says. “Nancy is so motivated, but she understands she doesn’t have to be perfect,” Bednar says. “If you mess up, don’t feel guilty. Focus on what you can do the next day to get back on track.” To make an appointment with Essentia Health’s dietitians and diabetes educators in Fargo-Moorhead, call 701-364-8900.

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No hidden broker or bank fees. No commissions. No surprises.


Independent & Locally Owned

– Investments – Rollover IRAs – Financial Planning – Trust/Estate Services – 401(k)

Steve Halverson

Paula Stebner

Diane Sandven

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Jan Nelson

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area HOME


kitchens and interior building materials are nestled in the great reads on the pages that follow. Plus, find out how one designer's knowledge and passion can help you design the kitchen of your dreams.

Words by Kim Malakowsky | Photography submitted by Valley Lights



ore than ever before, lighting options are plentiful, offering function and ambiance for every room in the home and beyond.

ABOVE: Kichler ® Wiscombe Park™ RIGHT: Kichler ® Parker Point™ Chandelier and Wall Sconce


When choosing lighting for your home, consider the task as well as the decor. Cooking requires different lighting than bedtime reading. Layering is a great solution for multitasking rooms combining ambient overhead light with indirect light. Fixtures with dimmers offers even more control and can be adjusted for day or night. 2016 brings in boldness with oversized fixtures making a statement in everything from handcrafted woods and warm metals to mottled glass. Pendants possess the power to perfectly accent where extra lighting is needed. Use them as a single fixture for low light or group several to brighten things up.

ABOVE: Kichler ® Krasi™ Pendant LEFT: Kichler ® Triad Linear Chandelier


What are we seeing in the Midwest? Todd Rasmussen of Valley Lights tells us, “Vintage industrial continues to be popular. We’re also seeing many types of fixtures with LEDs.” Good lighting has the power to transform a room. Talking with a lighting expert to learn about available options can be enlightening, and while the ever-widening selection can seem overwhelming, a little knowledge will make the perfect choice easier. And don’t overlook the outdoors. Lighting has expanded greatly beyond the front door. With the expansion of outdoor kitchens and entertaining areas, accent lighting is dressing up the exterior. With a flip of the switch your home will be bathed in beauty.


What are you

saving for?

Family Vacation An account from First International Bank & Trust can help get you there. Open an account online or talk to a Personal Banker to get started. [ aw ]

Words by Melissa Davidson Photography by Kensie Wallner Photography




JW KITCHENS Brings Design to New Level dishwashers, speed-cook ovens and induction cooktops. This “live” showroom is something Newman says is key to customer satisfaction.

a kitchen is

often said to be the heart of the home and for good reason. People spend a large part of their days in this space — cooking, eating, talking and creating memories. But the heart of the home arguably extends beyond the islands, refrigerators and backsplashes. At JW Kitchens, one of Fargo’s newest design centers, the clients are the heart of every home, whether they’re watching the big game in their media room, cooking a meal in their outdoor kitchen, or pampering themselves in their master bath. It’s about giving clients a place where functionality meets beauty.


“Our approach to design focuses on the experience and that means allowing our clients to interact with our showrooms, truly understanding how they use their homes, and giving them attentive ongoing service,” says Audrey Newman, owner of JW Kitchens. The company serves nearly all price points and works with homeowners, builders and remodelers in the region to create beautiful, functional spaces, including bathrooms, closets, indoor and outdoor kitchens and media rooms. The company offers the full spectrum of materials, from cabinets and flooring to lighting and tile. In the JW Kitchens showroom clients can get a firsthand look at how some of the spaces function, including full-size kitchens, pantries and closets. They also can use some of the latest appliances on the market, including steam ovens,

“It’s hard to envision how these spaces come together until you can experience them for yourself, and it all starts with appliances,” says Newman. She adds that appliance selection is a critical part of the design process that can have a huge impact on the design of the rest of the space. In fact, it’s so important, it’s what drove her to incorporate a wide range of working appliances into the JW Kitchen showroom. It’s also where the company’s roots started. Newman’s parents, Jim and Cathy, started JW Kitchens as an appliance service business out of their Iowa garage more than 40 years ago. Since then, it has evolved into a full-service design company helping homeowners in our region and northeast Iowa create spaces that match their lifestyle for a lifetime. “Our goal is to design the ideal space that works for everyone in their home, whether they are six or 60,” Newman says. For instance, dishwashers can be raised for easier access and dishes can be placed in pullout drawers, allowing little ones to help out; automatic cabinet lighting gives homeowners greater visibility in closets, drawers and pantries; and French oven doors allow for easy access from a wheelchair.

“Every client is different, and how they use their spaces are just as unique as them, which is why our showroom gives homeowners a full picture of what’s possible,” Newman says. JW Kitchens strives to offer a wide variety of some of the newest and highest quality options in appliances, cabinets and design layouts you can’t find anywhere else, including more modern materials. The center also is Fargo’s exclusive dealer for Wood-Mode cabinetry, one of the country’s largest, most reputable custom high-quality cabinetmakers.

While finishes are one aspect of design, Newman says a lot of it also relies on the person taking you through that process. “It’s more than just throwing some cabinets and appliances together so they look pretty,” Newman says. She adds that a certified designer, such as herself and her team, can address the complexities of spaces and work through potential issues or concerns before they turn into big headaches. “Foreseeing that a stove is going to slightly protrude from the cabinets is far easier and less costly to fix during the design phase rather than installation,” Newman says. “We not only ensure it meets our clients’ needs, but also that it all seamlessly fits together.”

When they leave home... they don’t leave alone.

Your Absolute Solution 1241 Prairie Pkwy Suite 120, West Fargo § 701.365.0515 §

Kitchens should cook better... not just look better.

While the heart of the home may change from day to day, what really matters stays the same — spaces homeowners can enjoy today, tomorrow and beyond. If you’d like to see the JW Kitchens experience firsthand, check out one of its upcoming food and wine tours, appliance training sessions, or kids in the kitchen cooking classes.

JW KITCHENS 701-388-5984

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APPLIANCES | CUSTOM CABINETRY | LIGHTING | HARDWARE JW Kitchens at the Galleria on Veterans | 5675 26th Avenue South | 701.551.0625


Design for Life

elegant & environmental, custom & creative,


detailed & distinctive IT’S ANOTHER CUSTOM CREATION by BUILDING CONCEPTS. Words by Joyce Eisenbraun | Photography by Ben Nash Photography



ur philosophy is based on a passion for the details,” says Building Concepts co-owner Kim Hochhalter. With her architect husband, Alan, the design team begins each home project by considering the home site, and how the environment can be enhanced within the design. With the beautiful custom model on 3676 Houkom Dr. E. in West Fargo, the back of the lot faces west, boasting established trees, and Alan has incorporated them into the gorgeous views from the home. The ground level patio snuggles into the shade trees. The open floor plan with corner windows allows natural light from the south and east into the entire home.

From the initial design meetings with Alan, a home design is created, incorporating all the details desired. “If there’s an heirloom hutch that needs to be in the dining area,” Kim says, “Alan will want to know so he can incorporate that piece into the planning of the room.” One of the benefits of dealing with an architect who has a passion for residential construction is the timeless beauty of the design. “Changing a paint color is easy,” Kim says. “But moving walls or changing out tile gets expensive.” It’s why Building Concepts’ designs are both loved and livable, years after completion. Once a contract is signed, Kim takes over as the construction manager, assisted by their interior designer, Kristin Ditch. For all the color and design decisions, Kirsten and Kim provide as much or as little assistance as the owners wish; again, it is their choice.



“We attend international/national homebuilder shows and educational seminars, so we have access to the most current information,” Kim notes. Some trends she notes are in colors. White cabinets will be around for a while, she says, while the wall colors are still using shades of gray with white trim. Natural wood tones remain timeless and warm. Another trend in home styles for younger homeowners is the combination of urban and eclectic. “They combine the disposable with vintage, to personalize their home, yet be flexible with their ever-changing style,” Kim says. “There’s also a lot of natural woods being used to blend with the white and add some warmth.” Carryover trends include an open style of home rather than small room boxes. The more open, with minimal hallways, the better to maximize the square footage, she explains.

bank fees

Hate _________? THE MODEL A covered front porch with asymmetrical ledgestone columns opens to a large entry, complete with closet on the right. The moment you step into the home on Houkom Drive, the eyes are drawn to the natural, inviting and beautiful view of the established trees through the bank of windows along the entire back of the home. Alan’s design artfully incorporates the outdoor vista within the 3,808 finished square-foot home. On the left of the foyer is a short hall to the guest bath, two bedrooms and an open staircase leading to the lower landing, patio space and garden level basement. Just ahead is the

local checking accounts Compare ______________.

the savings

See ____________. Presented by Bell Bank | Member FDIC



from design

open living area with a cornered gas fireplace set into a ceramic and walnut surround. On the right is the beautifully appointed custom kitchen that faces the front of the home. Off the kitchen is the “service hallway” leading to the drop zone, laundry and garage entrance. Between the kitchen and living room is a doorway to the master bedroom suite.


Throughout the home, light gray walls are complemented by white trim and doors and contrasted with beautiful rustic walnut cabinets and shelving. Flooring is a high-quality laminate in a rustic grayed wood tone, adding warmth with easy maintenance for the high-traffic areas, while the bedrooms all have a soft gray carpet. The countertops are finished in quartz, with the backsplashes in clear glass.

through construction, we are a working to satisfy each and every customer each and every day. — KIM HOCHHALTER


The architectural touches can be seen in all the rooms, from the placement of the windows which maximize the views, to thoughtful details homeowners will find delightful. The kitchen has a large center island topped with a beautiful quartz in an off-set rectangle to maximize the space available: narrower on one end than the other. Seating around accommodates up to eight, or provides great prep or buffet space. An apron-front sink adds a touch of vintage

charm. Rather than a walk-in pantry, there is a beautiful pantry wall of walnut cabinets, offering easy storage and beauty at the same time. Innovative and thoughtful design is also apparent in the master bedroom, from the placement of the walk-in closet to the views of the trees from the large southern corner windows. Downstairs, the garden level windows provide natural light and a great view. A built-in bar lines one wall of the family room, while the bonus room on the side is perfect for a home office or workout space.


From the new Parade of Homes model in West Fargo to previous homes such as the Villas at Osgood, the creative custom designs from Building Concepts offers homeowners a fresh and innovative perspective. Their project management software includes every step of the homebuilding adventure from design selections to budgets, and is useful throughout the construction process. The owner knows what their home will look like before it is built, using the owners’ selected colors, textures and finishes. “It’s much easier to make changes in the planning phase,” Kim says. “We work with the homeowner and show them all their selections, and then we build, once we have their approval.” Listening to the clients, incorporating their ideas, researching the details to create a home that meets their dreams, and building a home that will stand the test of time: those are the goals that Alan and Kim strive for every day. “From design through construction, we are a ‘hands-on’ team,” she says, “working to satisfy each and every customer each and every day.”

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Kim Hochhalter Building Concepts Inc. P.O. Box 669 Fargo, ND 58107-0669 Office: 701-280-2091 Cell: 701-866-2484

[ aw ]


Powerful Women. Proven Results. Kristy Albrecht – Employment, Litigation Katie Perleberg – Trusts & Estates Beth Alvine – Corporate, Real Estate, Employment Aubrey Zuger – Litigation Jessica Foss – Trusts & Estates For more information call 701.237.8200

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Christina Hemmer shows us how one small step at a time, with each and every positive action, you too can make a big difference to many.

cover story Words by Rebecca Meidinger


Photography by Ben Nash Photography


changing kids’ worlds, ONE CHILD

aq a TIME

DAKOTA BOYS & GIRLS RANCH STAFF From Left to Right: Tom Kopp, Treatment Manager, Fargo Youth Home; Amy Ambuehl, Office Manager; Christina Hemmer, Vice President of Clinical Services; Christy Wilkie, Clinical Director; Mickey Bahe, Treatment Manager, Fargo Psychiatric Residential Treatment Facility


ver since she was young, Christina Hemmer has been a natural go-getter and world changer, far more inclined to make things happen rather than wait for things to happen. As the vice president of clinical services for Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch, Hemmer comments, “People so often want things to just ‘turn out.’ But you can’t wait for things to just ‘turn out.’ You have to actively pursue things — make things happen.” That go-getter spirit is exactly what has enabled her to get to where she is today, changing kids’ worlds, one child at a time.



rowing up in St. Cloud, Minnesota, Hemmer was a schoolmate of Jacob Wetterling, a 1989 kidnapping victim whose case has not yet been resolved. She recounts his disappearance as an experience that significantly shaped her interest in mental health, awakening her desire to walk with people through their darkest moments. “I didn’t want to walk the other way; I wanted to be able to do something for those who were hurting.” As a teen, Hemmer found herself wrestling with depression and anxiety, but she lacked the vocabulary to express her struggles. Instead, her coping mechanism was to throw herself into as many activities as possible. Now, with her knowledge of mental health, she sees her struggles clearly on the pages of her journals and knows her busy involvement was, in part, an effort to ignore issues going on under the surface and avoid the feelings she could not name. At NDSU in the late ‘90s, Hemmer had her sights on a biotech degree until she realized that hanging out in a lab with rats might not be the best way to satisfy her extroverted, peopleloving nature. Taking a year off to re-evaluate, she answered phones at Blue Cross Blue Shield and found herself wanting to discuss the callers’ personal issues rather than simply tell them their deductible amount. Determining that her heart and mind were designed to help people — especially children and teens — through the muck and mire of life, she re-enrolled at NDSU to pursue sociology. Also during that year off of school, while playing pool with friends at Bison Turf after work one night, Hemmer met the man who would become her husband. After losing a round of pool to her, Jason Hemmer walked her to her car, asked her on a date, and they’ve been together ever since. Hemmer says, “He is the most intelligent and kind person I have ever met. He is a Boy Scout leader, football coach, plays church league softball, and would drop anything to help a friend. He inspires me. He is a very calm presence, and really my complete opposite in many ways.” The same fall she re-entered NDSU, Hemmer saw an advertisement in the newspaper for a job at Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch. The prospect of working with at-risk kids in a Christian environment piqued her interest, so she applied for the parttime, entry-level job and has never looked back. Ever since that

first part-time job, Hemmer has loved the work and mission of Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch. On a mission to “help at-risk children and their families succeed in the name of Christ,” the Ranch provides a safe place to live, learn and heal for children who have psychiatric, behavioral and trauma struggles. The Ranch serves children ages 10–19, offering 24-hour access to highly trained staff who provide structure, therapy and training in necessary life skills. The Ranch consists of two types of youth homes. The residential child care facilities (group foster care) are located in Fargo and Minot. Children ages 12–19 come to these facilities with moderate mental health or behavioral struggles such as susceptibility to self-harm, drug and/or alcohol use, refusal to attend school, and aggressive behavior. The psychiatric residential treatment facilities, located in Fargo, Bismarck and Minot, offer the highest level of psychiatric care available in the state. Youth here are ages 10– 18, require 24/7 supervision and are battling complex behavioral and/or psychological conditions with significant increased risk of suicide, self-harm, aggressive responses, impulsivity and anxiety. They benefit from an intensive program of high-level therapy, psychiatric care, and nursing support for an average of four to five months. The Fargo campus is located near Davies High School in south Fargo and houses 16 students. Statewide, 93 kids live at the facilities at any one time. Additionally, about 100 children and adolescents receive outpatient psychiatric and psychological services each month. While at the Ranch, students are enrolled in its fully accredited Dakota Memorial School. The Fargo school, which opened two years ago as the newest DMS campus in the state, held its first graduation this past May. With rocking desk chairs, swivel stools and under-the-table bicycle pedals, DMS classrooms are designed for students who’ve suffered through trauma and struggle with focus and attention. DMS teachers avoid phrases such as “eyes on me,” “pay attention” or “sit still,” and students are allowed to listen to their iPods while they work. As Hemmer mentioned, “Sometimes total focus is more than a student can handle. We can’t expect that.” In addition to the students who live at the Ranch, the school serves another 45 students who live off campus but benefit from a smaller, more adaptive learning environment.


treatment provided to all kids in all locations. Last fall, Hemmer became vice president of clinical services for the entire organization. One of her primary efforts in this role has been streamlining the treatment plan for each individual — uniting each child’s nursing, therapy and educational staff, as well as the family, to be a SOMEONE DONATED PANTS professional, integrated team. She cares deeply about giving clients a voice as AND A SHIRT TO THE THRIFT part of their treatment plan. “The family STORE FOR THIS. SOMEONE is wondering, ‘Who is going to value my voice?’ These families have heard a hunWROTE OUT A CHECK FOR $20, dred different voices about what they EVEN IF THEY DIDN’T HAVE ‘should’ be doing. We say to them, ‘Tell us what you’ve been through…I bet it’s MUCH MONEY. SOMEONE been exhausting.’”





aving been with the Ranch her entire career, Hemmer has lived faithfully by her mantra of “making things happen,” readily walking through every door the organization has opened to her and trusting that God has been the one leading her steps. Early on she discovered that God had given her a love for mental health and a deep passion for serving those in dire need. Wanting to be an advocate for teens battling mental health struggles and a knowledgeable resource for families, Hemmer pursued a master’s degree in counseling and then spent years earning her license as a professional clinical counselor. She laughs at those years, remembering the craziness of full-time grad school, working full time, getting married, buying their first house, and having their first child, Meghan. Shortly after Hemmer finished her master’s in counseling, in their best attempt to keep up the craziness, they welcomed their second baby, Zachary, and Jason went back to school to earn his mechanical engineering degree at NDSU (while also working). Jason has worked for Trane for 19 years, where he is now a project engineer. A few years after becoming a counselor, Hemmer was promoted to a position in operations and human resources. Desiring to more strategically blend the organization’s love for kids with the most effective business tactics for maximum impact, Hemmer decide to pursue her second master’s degree. Soon after acquiring her master’s of business administration degree, Hemmer moved into the position of clinical director, overseeing all


Another emphasis in her new role is the integration of trauma-informed care — one of Hemmer’s passions — into all areas of practice. Specializing in sensory-based trauma care, Hemmer helps students recreate sights, sounds and smells related to their past trauma, enabling them to work through the trauma of their past. Much of this trauma is sexual and physical abuse, as well as neglect and abandonment, usually requiring 14–18 sessions of hard work for the youth. Staff members also receive training to cope with the vicarious trauma that they experience as counselors. “We laugh a lot. We have too, because so often it’s either laugh or cry. We believe in humor here.” Hemmer also oversees suicide assessment, which involves talking to kids in a loving, direct, straightforward way to determine their risk for self-harm. Because kids are her first love, Hemmer has kept one-on-one therapy a priority in each role she’s filled. A short walk through the girls’ dorm area quickly reveals her tremendous rapport with and genuine love for each student. She knows their names, their stories and their hearts, and it’s clear the children there know she is for them.




emmer’s love and gratitude for every single donation is also evident. The Ranch accepts insurance for many of its services, but the facilities, operations and services not covered by insurance are entirely dependent on a very generous donor base. This donor base allows the Ranch to expand its physical facilities, staff and outreach to meet the growing needs of the youth and families of North Dakota. The Ranch is currently constructing a large addition on its Fargo campus that will house a gymnasium, dining hall, fitness room, sensory room and chapel. Hemmer routinely reminds her staff, “Someone donated pants and a shirt to the thrift store for this. Someone wrote out a check for $20, even if they didn’t have much money. Someone is praying for us. These buildings are built by love and prayer.” This past June, in her constant quest to do new things and impact lives, Hemmer took her 12-year-old daughter on a mission trip to Ethiopia. “I just needed something that would teach me in a way I’d never been taught,” Hemmer explains. True to her “make things happen” nature, Hemmer wasn’t particularly interested in travelling around the world unless it had the potential to make a long-term life-changing impact for those she was travelling to. So when the opportunity arose to travel with a local ministry (Project 1:17) to Ethiopia for the purpose of training educators, she knew it was exactly what she was looking for. With her love for serving high-risk kids and her passion for trauma-informed care, the opportunity of training educators thrilled her. While there, Hemmer was struck at how easily the social barriers of economics, race, language and religion came tumbling down: “When we open ourselves to learning from others, the differences decrease and we are able to serve without judgment. When we put ourselves in another's shoes, demonstrating active empathy, we are able to see that people are people.” Bringing her daughter on the trip was a tremendous opportunity to reconnect, stretch themselves, develop their strengths, face weaknesses, serve others in life-changing ways, and take “safe risks” together. “Risk is where growth happens. This was her first opportunity to really be caught off guard and get uncomfortable, and I got to experience that with her. Our relationship can’t only be about the dirty socks on the floor. It’s so easy to focus on the things that don’t matter.”




It seems that Hemmer actually spends very little time focusing on things that don’t matter. In every area of her life, Hemmer is certainly a woman who makes things happen — things that have a lifelong, even eternal, impact on others. Yet there’s no way she could ever do it on her own; she credits God as being the one who works through her, guides her, and gives her the privilege of serving others. She also knows none of this could happen without Jason: “Seriously, he has to try to balance me out, which is quite an undertaking. If it wasn't for him I wouldn't have the foundation to build all these life adventures around. [Our spouses] help hold us accountable to who we are and who we want to be. I am so grateful for an amazing husband, kids, parents, close friends and mentors.” While changing the world may seem like a daunting or impossible task, Hemmer is living proof that we can change one child’s world. From guiding teens in our own state and community, to training educators all the way across the world, Hemmer certainly is “making things happen” everywhere she goes; changing kids’ worlds, one child at a time. [ aw ]

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Area Woman Magazine – Fargo, ND  
Area Woman Magazine – Fargo, ND  

August.September 2016 – Area Woman is the first known, free-released, women's interest magazine in the country.