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Summer 2015

Promoting a vibrant, localized economy!

Redhead Creamery Sweet Dreams are Made of Cheese

Creative Minnesota Quantifying the Value of Art

Unity In Community The Art of Running a Successful Craftshow

Angora Gardens Unique fibers from the farm

Promoting a vibrant, localized economy! SUMMER 2015 a


Promoting a vibrant, localized Minnesota economy

Your online community to SHOP & SELL Promoting a vibrant, localized Minnesota economy Minnesota Made Products Your online community to SHOP & SELL Minnesota Made Products

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no start up costs or listing fees be part of a minnesota marketplace

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Editor’s Note I went to bed and it was snowing I woke and spring was gone We find ourselves in summer Already a fleeting song

More than anything else the summer reminds us that the world keeps turning. For some of us, our steps grow slower in the summer as we try to stretch the minutes into hours while others’ speed up, trying to pack weeks into days. But, time keeps on without slowing or speeding, marching only to the pace of the Divine. This magazine has been a touchstone for me, connecting me to time in a way I have not felt since leaving grade school, when the seasons marked a change of life rather than a change in weather. Our steps grow stronger now as we produce our fourth issue but every issue changes us a little and the idea of Make It Minnesota changes with us. Moving down roads unknown we find paths unexpected, and so I want to share with you the path we find ourselves on. Make it Minnesota will continue to be a place to highlight Minnesota businesses, growers, and makers but we found we were missing something. As Make It Minnesota matures we will be dedicating some of our efforts to finding Minnesota. We will be highlighting places and people and communities as well as the makers, growers, and businesses that live there. I don’t think one can ever define Minnesota in a word or even a page but over time as we share the stories of this place we call home maybe we can begin to understand it. In that spirit please watch our website and social media for details on an upcoming essay contest “My Minnesota Summer Vacation” the winner of which will be featured in our Fall issue.

Benjamin Matzke

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Contributors Publisher/Editor Benjamin Matzke Production Manager Leah Matzke

Benjamin Matzke was born on the 4th of July -70 days. He loves the Minnesota outdoors and enjoys a trek into the boundary waters whenever possible - even in January.

Print & Web Design Leah Kurth Megan Poehler Contributors Amanda Johnson Leah Kurth Kara Larson Megan Poehler Illustration Leah Kurth Cover Photo Becca Dilley

Copyright All images contained in Make It Minnesota are subject to copyright of the artist, illustrator or photographers as named, but not limited to. Reproduction of any part of this magazine without prior permission is prohibited.

Kara Larson may be a South Dakota transplant, but today, she is proud to call Minneapolis home. With a B.A. in English, she now finds passion in the spreading the word on the magic of Minnesota. She is also passionate about honest creative endeavors, movies, and omelettes.

Megan Poehler is just your regular social media savvy twenty-something. She is a small town southern Minnesota native who loves traveling and cooking.

Amanda Johnson is in her early twenties and lives on a Minnesotan hobby farm. She loves training dogs, riding horses, and sewing.

Copyright 2015. All rights reserved. Disclaimer The views and comments expressed by the writers are not always that of Make It Minnesota. While every effort has been made to ensure accuracy of the information in this publication, Make It Minnesota accepts no responsibility or liability for any errors, omissions or resultant consequences, including any loss or damage arising from reliance on information in this publication.

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Leah Kurth’s your friendly neighborhood designer, illustrator, and all-around art nerd. A migrant from central Wisconsin, she’s grown to love the people and places of Minnesota. Loves mangoes, fresh air, and geekery. Habla español.


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Contents 04 Out And About: Craft Fair 10 Creative Minnesota 15 Featured Small Businesses

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Stories from Across the State

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Northwest:

Far North Spirits

Northeast:

Chicago Bay Marketplace

Central:

La Ferme Restaurant

Southwest:

Redhead Creamery

Southeast:

Angora Gardens

Metro:

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Jule’s Loft

31 Minnesota Kitchen:

Summer Drinks

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33 Classifieds

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Out And About by: Kara Larson

Putting the Unity in Community: The Art of Running a Successful Craft Fair

The Minnesota craft fair is unique. Oftentimes, it feels like home. The focus on supporting local makers and building Minnesota communities is essential—and in this feature, we highlight three exceptional Minnesota craft fairs. As representatives of the objectives and ideas from each, we have Sarah Kosch from Maker Fair, Becky Sturm from HAMMS Event and Andy Krueger from Craft’za/Craftstravaganza.

And that’s how HAMMS was conceptualized. From her own experience as a maker and with the idea of crowd-funding behind it all, Becky found her passion in providing a quality craft fair to the Minnesota community. “This is as close to supporting and shopping local as you can get. And you get to meet the owner and maker of the company, so you can find out first-hand about the products and services you are purchasing.”

Now, let’s meet these three innovative people. First on the list is Becky Sturm, CoFounder of the HAMMS Event. Hailing from St. Paul, Becky’s path that lead her to organizing and facilitating a successful craft fair like HAMMS, which is an acronym for Help A Minnesota Maker Succeed, started on the inside of it all. Becky shares, “Being a maker myself and part of the pop-up shop and craft fair community, I have been a part of many of them. I have worked closely with another maker, my HAMMS Event co-founder, Sairey Gernes, and we have done many markets together. She and I took our favorite aspects of all of the pop-ups we have done together and added a crowd-funding aspect to it.”

It is this close connection to makers that Becky finds most inspiring. For her, the detachment from maker and retailer is not conducive to building a community that thrives from and appreciates local. “We have spent a couple of generations buying merchandise from retailers that are not affiliated with the folks that make the goods they sell. Those retailers also don’t know who made the products they are selling. There is a disconnect, quality lost, a story not told.” She adds, “Purchasing from the maker keeps more money in the community. It strengthens the community because a story is being shared when you purchase their goods and services and this encourages the support of others in the community.”

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And at the end of the day, what has Becky taken away? “I believe the best coordinators of an event are makers themselves. We see first-hand what is great about a pop-up market as well as what could have been improved. We also now have close relationships with other makers and entrepreneurs because we are all doing the same thing—trying to make a living doing what we love designing and developing goods.”


Next up is Andy Krueger, Founder of Craft’za/ Craftstravaganza. He and his wife, Jenna, were both born and raised in the Twin Cities. After returning from college at UW Eau Claire, they found themselves looking for a cool event selling modern handmade art, but disappointingly, there really wasn’t one in the area. So what did they do? They made their own. Andy reminisces, “I had a degree in entrepreneurship and Jenna double-majored in photography and graphic design, so we just put our skills together and made it happen. Of course this involved a lot of trial and error, collaborating with the local artist community, and improving the formula over the years—but that’s the short story!” They created two events they are very passionate about. “The major promise of our show is that it features strictly handmade goods, juried for quality, and the artists are

required to attend. We also aim for a mix of new and returning artists, high and low price points, and a good overall variety of products. It’s also important to us that admission is free so all the money spent at the show goes directly to the artists. We run our show this way because it’s the kind of event we want to attend—and it turns out a lot of other people like it this way too!” The positive effects a craft fair like Craftstravaganza inspires in a community are substantial. Since they don’t allow direct sales or wholesalers, the exhibitors end up being mostly local, usually including artists from WI, IA, and the Dakotas, as well as all over MN. Andy says, “There’s a great benefit to both the artists and attendees in meeting face-to-face. Shoppers can ask questions, learn about process, and know

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where their money is going. Artists get to meet their fans in an environment that is emphasizing the value of handmade products and attracting an appreciative audience.” Andy has a few tips for people who might like to start their own craft fair. “First, make sure you understand the community and its needs. The first thing we did was meet with artists to brainstorm and learn what they wanted from an event like this.” Andy also offers some of the questions that he and his wife asked: • What’s a fair price for a booth to participate? • What time(s) of year and show hours would work for you? • Where should we promote and advertise to attract the right shoppers? • Where (general location or specific venues) would be best? • Is there anything we should be sure NOT to do? Andy has learned a great deal in his journey with Craftstravaganza and Craft’za, even if it isn’t necessarily something tangible. “I don’t know if I’ve gained any unique, universal lessons, but starting and running this event has been very instructive in my personal development. After nine years of managing Craftstravaganza, I took my passion for fun, consumer-oriented events and turned it into a full-time job! To anyone considering doing something similar (or any project that you’re passionate about) I’d give the same advice: go for it! If nothing else you’ll learn something about yourself and what you enjoy doing.”

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It is time to meet Sara Krosch, the former manager and organizer of Maker Fair. Sara is originally from Vernon Center, MN, but having lived and worked overseas for most of the last 12 years as a community development and health promotion consultant, hers is a life of branching out and building something special for the communities in which she resides. This connection to community is something Sara has come to truly appreciate in her years abroad. “Personally, as an expat living in 10+ countries, I missed being part of a familiar community. The Maker Fair became an opportunity for me to reconnect with people from my home area and to feel a sense of accomplishment from truly creating something new. I met so many people and was excited to bring artists, media, and the community together.”


The path that lead Sara to organizing and facilitating a successful craft fair began when she started a virgin coconut oil and natural skin care business in 2010 while living in the Philippines. She shares, “I would come home for a couple months each year to sell at craft fairs in Minnesota and I was surprised to find that I was often one of the few handcrafted artisans at these events. Where were the crafts at the craft fair? Most of the sellers were third-party resellers. This motivated me to organize the first all-handcrafted Maker Fair in Vernon Center.” So, while still living in the Philippines, Sara set out to organize the first Maker Fair in Vernon Center in 2012. “There were 20 artisans in two small rooms and over 200 attendees,​which nearly doubled the size of the town that day. Many people pass through Vernon Center on Highway 169 and have little reason to stop, but that day, they did​. I heard so many people say they were looking forward to the event the next year, how quaint the town was, and how they enjoyed lunch from a local restaurant. The event introduced many to the town and brought in money to local

Sara (right) with co-organizer Kara Van Sickle

businesses. More importantly, it was a chance for local artists to sell and take advance holiday orders. Several artisans at the first Maker Fair had never sold at a craft fair before and they did so well at the event, it really launched their creative businesses.” As Maker Fair moved to the Blue Earth County Fair Grounds in 2013, Sara found that location was ideal for a fall festival. “Aside from the great variety of artisans, the beauty of the Garden City setting was greatly complemented. With declining SUMMER 2015

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attendance at the Blue Earth County Fair over the years, the Maker Fair reintroduced attendees to the beauty of the grounds. Many attendees had not been to the location before or not for many years and the event brought people out who had not seen each other in a long while. It is a common sight to see longtime friends chatting between shopping and enjoying the festive atmosphere in a place that holds many fond memories.” As a handcrafted artisan herself, Sara knew that the key to success​at any show was the all-handcrafted nature of the event and extensive advertising. And this applies to her experience as a craft fair attendee as well. She appreciates a well branded, conveniently laid out, and ​festive atmosphere. In her work overseas, she organized many events, so she had extensive familiarity with the time-line and logistics of it all. With three years experience organizing and managing Maker Fair, Sara offers her best pieces of advice to anyone inspired to create a similar event: • Have a strict handcrafted-only theme.  Do not allow third party sellers, flea marketers, or any other aspect of the event to stray from the handcrafted theme. Do not worry, you will fill your space and artisans and attendees will both appreciate having a focused shopping event. With the growth of Etsy and Pinterest, there is a rebirth in arts, crafts, and up-cycling that the public is hungry for!

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• Have a well-branded internet presence. Create a website to recruit artisans, food sellers, entertainers, and volunteers as well as market your event to the public. And, have an active Facebook page • Advertise extensively. The Maker Fair had a website, Facebook page, posters, fliers, billboard, signs, newspaper and online ads, event listings in print and online, sent out post cards...the majority of your budget should be put towards promotion. Do not rely on word of mouth only. Find someone with graphic design skills to create a logo and unique designs and utilize on-line sources to print materials professional and in bulk for a low cost. Write media releases and send them to all local TV, newspaper, and radio stations. Don’t be shy to be interviewed! The fall is a very busy time of the year so you will need to make your event stand out.   • Keep the event growing and fresh. As your event grows, you will need to have new attractions to keep the public’s interest. The Maker Fair has added Shopper’s Drawings, Goodie Bags, Kids Make-and-Take Crafts, Adult Craft Booths, Horse Drawn Trolley Rides, Harvest Pie Contest, Kids Pumpkin Decorating Contest and local music acts over its first 3 years. Keep the attractions that are popular and discontinue others to make way for something new each year. 


HAMMS Event

Beginnings: It began in the Spring of 2013—they just had their 3rd event. Dates: It occurs in April every year. Location: The first two years it took place at the former Hamm’s brewery shipping docks. This year took place at the Schmidt Brewery Artist Lofts - at the former Schmidt brewery. Next year, TBD. Attendance: Growing every year, this year it was 700. What makes it unique? Certainly the crowd-funding aspect of our event. The HAMMS Event is a pay-toshop model and we give up to $5K to one Maker at the end of the event.

Craft’za and Craftstravaganza

Beginnings: The planning for St. Paul Craftstravaganza began in late 2005 and the first event was held in 2006. The fall show, the Minneapolis Craft’za, began in 2012. Both events have been hosted annually since they started. Dates: Craftstravaganza in May and Craft’za in November (dates TBA) Location: The St. Paul Craftstravaganza is held in the Eco Experience Building on the Minnesota State Fairgrounds, and the Minneapolis Craft’za takes place at the Grain Belt Bottling House. Attendance: On average, between 2,000-2,500 a day. More importantly, after 10 years, we attract very high quality shoppers—discerning folks who appreciate the quality of handmade goods and enjoy supporting local artists. What makes them unique? Our shows are special because they’re juried, handmade-only, and the artists are required to attend. Craftstravaganza always offers free workshops so attendees can learn new crafty skills!

Maker Fair

Beginnings: The first Maker Fair was held in Vernon Center in 2012 on the second Saturday in October. The event moved to the Blue Earth County Fair Grounds in 2013 and in 2014.  Dates: October 10, 2015. Location: Blue Earth County Fairgrounds Attendance: It has grown from 20 artisans and 230 attendees in 2012 to 125 artisans and over 2000 attendees​in 2014. What makes it unique? The Maker Fair is unique because of its strict handcrafted only theme, its large size, and its location at the beautiful Blue Earth County Fair Grounds.​It is the largest e​ vent of its kind in Southern Minnesota and free to attend.

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Out And About

Creative Minnesota

Quantifying the Value of Art by: KARA LARSON

“It’s a major industry in Minnesota and we just have never been able to talk about it.” Creative Minnesota is a project that aims to illuminate and explain the great impact of the arts across our Northern state. An essential aspect of Minnesota’s identity and allure, the arts and culture sector encourages community connectedness, enriches quality of life, and attracts creatives and intellectuals alike to strengthen the workforce. At the base of this study is Sheila Smith, who is coming into her 20th year as the Executive Director for the Minnesota Citizens for the Arts and is also serving the chair of the committee and manages the entire Creative Minnesota project.

Her background certainly lends her the position as mediator between these two worlds, but Creative Minnesota also brings in a third area of interest— economics. Sheila offers, “Unlike any other industry, the non-profit arts and culture sector did not have good data about itself. If you look at dentists in Minnesota or the construction industry, you’re going to find a great deal of information. How many contractors are there? What’s the economic impact of construction in the state? How important is it to the economy? For the arts, we didn’t have that kind of information.”

Born and raised right here in Minnesota, Sheila attended St. Olaf College, where she attained a degree in Shakespeare. She also formerly worked at the Minnesota legislature, which sparked her beginnings in combining the worlds of art and politics. In her current work, Sheila explains, “Minnesota Citizens for the Arts lobbies the legislature and congress on behalf of the non-profit arts and that’s why we’re interested in research, because it helps us advocate. We’re in this place that’s like halfway between the political world and the arts world.”

With a hope to quantify the economic impact of the non-profit arts and culture sector, Sheila, along with an established team, joined the national Cultural Data Project. Sheila shares, “This connected Minnesota to a national effort to centralize the kind of data that needs to be collected by arts and cultural organizations when they’re applying to grant makers. So it’s an on-line centralized database in which the organization enters all their information and then the foundations use that along with additional information to make their grant making

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decisions. And a happy byproduct of that is a great big database of financial information about arts and culture organizations in Minnesota.”

surrounding states, we have 10 and a half times the arts economy of Kansas. We have 12 and a half times the arts economy of South Dakota.”  

After working on this project for a couple of years, Sheila and her team had enough data to begin to dig deeper. “We were able to start really looking at the sector and analyzing it and creating some statistics that would help us understand how the non-profit economy is working and how many organizations there are and whether they’re spread across the state geographically—all kinds of interesting things. We then contracted with Americans for the Arts to use our data to create an economic impact study. We also did some independent analysis of that data plus other data to come up with the Creative Minnesota report.”

For Minnesota, this is huge. These numbers provide insight into what sets our state apart. In addition to the statewide information, Creative Minnesota also includes regional studies. “No matter where you live in Minnesota, you can get an assessment of the level of arts and culture activity in your area and its economic impact. And we also did audience surveying to supplement the data and found out a lot of interesting things about our audiences, including that people coming from outside our area spend more money when they attended arts events than people who are from the area.” Sheila adds, “So that’s an obvious directive to economic development professionals to think about how to attract more people to their cities from outside of the city to spend their money.”

“The arts are something that really sets Minnesota apart from surrounding states; it’s something that makes us unique.”

These results fill many gaps in previous research, so Sheila is confident that this project is going to go far. “We’ve already used it in legislative advocacy. We’ve talked to mayors and city council members and economic development professionals all across the state about using the arts in their economic developments thinking and planning for the future.” Sheila believes in this project because of the incredible arts community that Minnesota houses. “The arts are something that really sets Minnesota apart from surrounding states; it’s something that makes us unique. We have double the arts economy of Wisconsin, even though Wisconsin has more people than we do. Then you look around at other

Outsiders are particularly drawn by the arts to all of the state’s border areas. Southwest Minnesota, for example, has the largest percentage of audiences that come from outside of the region—drawing people from Iowa and South Dakota. In Sheila’s eyes, this shows that when people are trying to figure out where they should spend promotional dollars, this is data to consider. The results of Creative Minnesota are being shared with the public in a very hands-on way. Sheila is making her way around the state on a journey that will include around 60 presentations by the end of June in all corners of Minnesota

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to over 3000 people. And the results have been received very well. “It’s a joy to be able to go out and tell people good news. Particularly the way that the arts and culture set Minnesota apart from the surrounding states, thinking about audience spending and how to capitalize on that—it is something that any city, large or small, can spend some time thinking about. And I’ve enjoyed particularly the meetings that we’ve had along with the state’s Initiative Funds, which are economic development groups that work primarily in rural Minnesota where we brought groups of arts people and economic development people all into one room to talk about this issue.” Sheila adds, “For example, at the West Central Initiative Fund in Fergus Falls, folks said, “Wow, we’ve never had these two groups together before and this was a great meeting and we’re going to keep talking to each other.” So that’s the kind of thing we want to see. This highlights the importance of the arts and culture to the economy and into communities.” Once again, Sheila is faced with the opportunity to combine two worlds. “If you want to teach people about the arts and culture, you need to speak their language. Not everybody understands the intrinsic value of the arts, which those of us who work in the arts do understand. You need to figure out how to speak their language, so that’s the benefit of doing research which is a little bit out of our usual think, so that we have those ways to talk to people.” The new language includes economic impact, jobs created, local spending, and many more economic areas that were simply uncounted before this study. One of the most exciting pieces of data for Sheila has to do with the number of kids served by non-profit arts and cultural organizations annually. “We found 2.6M K-12 students served annually, by non-profit arts and cultural organizations, and there’s only 900,000 K-12 students in Minnesota. So we’ve learned every kid gets on average three experiences in the arts and culture from non-profit arts and cultural organizations a year.”

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Another aspect that excites Sheila is the growth that the study measured. “There was an economic impact study of the arts and culture in 2006 and it found $838M annually in economic impact. And here we get a result of $1.2B in economic impact. So we had this tremendous growth in the arts and culture economy in Minnesota. We had a growth of 11,000 more people whose jobs are provided by the economic activity of arts and culture organizations. It’s a major industry in Minnesota and we just have never been able to talk about it.” The results have been quantified. The data is being presented. So, what’s next for Creative Minnesota? The group will update this data every two years, so in 2017 they will take another look and see how the numbers have moved. Within this two-year cycle, they hope to add another component to it each two years. Sheila shares, “So two years from now, we’re hoping to look at the economic lives of individual artists in addition to the economic impact of the non-profit arts and cultural organizations. Because the study we have now is just the organizations, it doesn’t include the artists, and of course artists are extremely important.” Continued growth and progress are on the menu for the future of Creative Minnesota, but Sheila is also incredibly grateful for where the project is today. She shares, “I’d like to particularly thank the members of the Creative Minnesota team who met monthly and worked very hard to make this happen. It was a very hands-on group of arts and culture leaders and they were very, very smart and I enjoyed working with them and they need to get some kudos.”  For more in-depth information on Creative Minnesota, including access to all the data sets, details on the $1.2 billion economic impact generated every year, the 1,269 participating organizations, each region’s impact, and the 22 funding partners, please visit the Creative Minnesota website, www.creativemn.org.


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Far North Spirits

DISTILLING THE ESSENCE OF MINNESOTA by: KARA LARSON

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Hallock, MN


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It all began in 1917 when Gustaf Swanson arrived in Skane Township to begin farming some of the richest land on earth. Nearly one hundred years later, his great grandson, Michael Swanson, and his wife, Cheri Reese decided to build a distillery on this very land. “We built the distillery during the summer of 2013 and began production on November 9, 2013,” Cheri begins. “The inspiration came from a desire and longing to move home, do something meaningful with the 100-year-old family farm, and create a legacy for the next 100 years.” This bold choice served as a vast contrast to the life the couple had formerly been living in the corporate world of the Twin Cities for several years. It was here that they began to explore the foodie scene developing in 2003. Cheri offers, “Inspired by chefs like Lucia Watson and Lenny Russo, we started to see ‘local’ in a whole new light. The idea of heritage ingredients, and a finished product made right on the farm, was very new to us and the possibilities seemed endless.” When the idea for Far North was conceptualized, Cheri and Michael would make the 6-hour drive from Minneapolis to Hallock approximately every other month. She remembers, “We’d use the time to talk about the business plan, the potential. It was a very creative time— lots of brainstorming sessions in car about names of spirits, branding, what we wanted the distillery to be. We took a great deal of inspiration from the area itself—it is wide open prairie up here, flat as a table, but beautiful in its own way; the vantage point is limitless and it gave us a feeling of anything is possible.” As Cheri brings up, the land played a prominent role in what Far North Spirits set out to be. The farm, and now distillery, is located a mere 25 miles from the Canadian border and on very rich northern soil. “Being this close to Canada, we grew up with the idea of whiskey being made from rye. In Canada, they actually call whiskey RYE. We got our rye grain from Holland, Manitoba; it’s called AC (for Ag Canada) Hazlet. It’s a wonderful variety that gives our spirits a lovely hint of vanilla and spice—our signature. The influence of rye in our spirits production is huge. This is an incredibly harsh climate, but thankfully the rye loves it here; it grows beautifully.” The duo also realizes that without this ideal locale, their operation wouldn’t be achievable. Michael shares, “Living here in Hallock, where we both grew up, is the “alpha and omega” of Far North. The farm makes the whole enterprise possible. The field to glass aspect of what we’re doing— farming and distilling the grains—is unique in this industry. We love that we can help bring the agriculture and distilling industries together. The potential for Minnesota is huge.” photos by: Megan Sugden SUMMER 2015

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photos by: Megan Sugden

And this unique attribute of bridging the gap between field and glass, agriculture and distilling, grain and spirits is something that Far North Spirits does with panache and transparency. “The idea of “reclaiming the craft of distilling” comes from the history of distilling and farming in America, and it goes back to before the country was even founded. Farmers would turn their grain into cash by distilling it— this was especially popular in places like Pennsylvania and Virginia. George Washington had a distillery at Mount Vernon during his presidency.” Michael adds, “We think

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Minnesota farmers are uniquely poised to reclaim the craft of distilling because of their tenacity in producing quality grains that will make exceptional spirits.” From a farming, distilling, and kinship perspective, Cheri and Michael sincerely believe in Minnesota. This connection to community is a vital aspect of Far North Spirits. Cheri offers, “Pride of place is very important to us; we’re proud of Minnesota’s heritage. Wouldn’t it be great if “local” became the next “Minnesota Miracle”?” There is a butcher up here


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in Hallock that makes incredible sausages, smoked salmon, and really knows how to cut fillets. There’s a young guy who keeps bees and makes his own honey; his dad grows mint and produces a lovely mint essence that can be used in myriad ways. You go to any, and I mean ANY, church or community fund-raiser and you’ll see tables and tables of the best homemade buns, bread, lefse, and other baked goods. A lady we’ve known all of our lives recently shared with us her fresh picked and canned high bush cranberries; they may find their way into a holiday liqueur some day.” Cheri adds, “All of this might seem unexpected—as unexpected as making exceptional spirits in a town of under 1,000 people. But that’s part of what we love about living here and doing what we’re doing. We’d love to see Minnesota get recognition on a national level for its quality of handcrafted products.” This micro-distillery is doing its part to put Minnesota rye on the map. In February of 2015, Far North Spirits received a three-year $188,495 crop research grant in order to complete an innovative study on varieties of winter rye grown in Minnesota. The study will focus on grain quality, yield, and other agronomic factors in the field and also on the sensory quality based on flavor, nose, and more in the distilling industry. This study will highlight the efforts of Far North Spirits, and more than that, it has the potential of making Minnesota an international leader in rye grains and rye whiskey. A study of this caliber certainly adds to the validity of Far North Spirits. However, this is an operation fueled by so much more than grains. In the conception, craft, and production of their quality spirits, it is authenticity that has the power to make the real difference. For Cheri and Michael, this is what take their spirits from special to legacy-level. “Authenticity is rare; it’s the luxury item of our time because marketing has become so sophisticated and ‘crafty’, often blurring the line between what’s real and what’s fake,” shares Cheri. “It’s important to us to be completely transparent and honest about how we make

things. It has to do with integrity and being proud of what we do—it sounds naïve, but that is how we approach making spirits.” Beyond appreciating the authenticity for themselves, they consider the individual enjoying their spirits as motivation for the transparency of the entire process. Cheri says, “We know that there are customers who want to feel absolutely certain about what they’re buying and who they’re buying it from; they want to KNOW for sure that they are getting a handcrafted spirit made with the best ingredients, and KNOW for sure that there is nothing mass-produced about what they are buying.” The individual Cheri is referring to is a person who craves authenticity and enjoys savoring an exceptional cocktail—a beverage built upon their signature non-GMO Hazlet rye grain. Far North makes a neutral spirit for the Navy Strength Gin, Solveig Gin, and Syvä Vodka, followed by an impressive list of botanicals and other variables for each spirit. And for the Roknar Minnesota Rye Whiskey, a majority of the mash bill is made up by the AC Hazlet rye with a bit of Blue River hybrid organic corn seed to sweeten the mash of the rye. In every bottle, there is an uncompromising level of quality—all because Cheri and Michael genuinely believe in Far North Spirits and have an incredible amount of passion for farming and distilling. “The best part of running Far North is being able to have an idea and just do it. No committees, no consensus-building meetings with departments, boards, and “stakeholders.” Just have an idea, and execute that idea. It is the most liberating thing ever.” This freedom can be experienced firsthand at Far North Spirits. Every Saturday from April through December, this micro-distillery is open for tours, tastings, and their cocktail room features recipes made from their own spirits, of course. And if Hallock isn’t quite on the drive home from work, the spirits of Far North are available in 450 locations throughout Minnesota, including more than 300 metro locations, and elsewhere in ND, SD, NY and NJ, with more states coming on-line soon. Please visit www.farnorthspirits.com to learn more.

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The sights and sounds of

The Chicago Bay Marketplace Hovland, MN

by: AMANDA JOHNSON

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The sound of singing and the smell of freshly baked bread floats across the parking lot in Hovland, a small Northern Minnesota town on the shore of Lake Superior. The quaint building is blue, with a sign on its side reading “Chicago Bay Marketplace” and a basket of flowers hanging above the door. Inside, Lisa Mesenbring, the store’s owner, plays the piano and sings in the dining area. When Lisa bought the building in 2008 it was rundown and unused, but with determination and many hours of work she transformed it into the beautiful place it is now. A section of the store is filled with groceries and other practical merchandise. One of the freezers is full of ice, an asset important to summer vacationers. Meats, cheeses, vegetables, and milk fill the refrigerators. A raspberry pie, brownies (so fresh they’re still gooey), and caramel rolls sit in a bakery cabinet. Everyday necessities like paper plates, canned food, and toothpaste pack the shelves. Some of the store’s less practical and exotic products include Hymalayan pink salt, blue cheese, and cherry-jalapeno chocolate. Lisa leaves the piano to welcome customers into her store. Lisa hands them menus and seats them in the dining area. It is decorated with vintage pictures of Hovland. The wall above the fireplaces hold agates from Lake Superior and a large flat rock with a picture of a loaf of bread on it (which was sandblasted by one of the locals). Today, since the weather is nice, eating on the patio is also an option. Umbrellas as red as cherries shade three tables so customers can comfortably admire the abundant purple lupines, a wildflower common by Hovland.

The Chicago Bay Marketplace provides a dining area, food, and most importantly – a location to meet new people.

The menu includes sandwiches, pizzas, and side servings. “Our food is good because we home-make it all and people keep coming back for more,” said Mesenbring. Mesenbring’s daily routine includes baking bread in the morning. Among her tap beers, she sells Schell’s, a beer brewed in New Ulm, Minnesota. One the most popular pizzas is called the Chicago Bay Entrepreneur, which includes pesto sauce, tomatoes, and mushrooms. The Chicago Bay Marketplace provides a dining area, food, and most importantly – a location to meet new people. “Our store brings a community gathering place,” Mesenbring says. If visitors ask Sandy Bockovich, one of the store’s workers, what the best thing about the store is, her face breaks into a huge smile and she says without hesitation, “My favorite part of working at the store is all of our customers. It’s so fun to see and talk to everybody!”

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La Ferme

A Journey from Farm to Fork by: KARA LARSON La Ferme means “The Farm” in French. And for this Alexandria, MN restaurant, it is a name that evokes the humility, simplicity, and truth of the farm. The humble name also references the chef and owner’s beliefs on real food—food that purely travels from farm to fork. Chef Matthew Jensen’s passion for food began many years ago and through his unique and extensive experience, he is able to bring something great to this central Minnesota community. Born in Alexandria, Chef Matthew was raised with the understanding and appreciation for family and a hometown oriented way of life. However, before he would bring his culinary talents to his home community, he wanted to spend time away refining his skills and defining his vision as an artist. Matthew began the adventure by obtaining his culinary degree in Pasadena, California and he believes that the real establishments of his culinary journey began after finishing his degree in 2002. He remembers, “I interned at Vincent A Restaurant in Minneapolis, helped a few of my friends start restaurants in the Twin Cities, and got my first big break in the industry as a Sous Chef at Bay Port Cookery in Bayport, Minnesota. After these experiences, I traveled back home to Alexandria, MN to work for a couple restaurants in the area.”

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Alexandria, MN Matthew’s wife, Tanya, who is now a teacher for district 206 in Alexandria, shares, “Matthew was always drawn back to the Alexandria area for the hunting, fishing, lakes, family, and country living. And for Matthew in particular, he knew he wanted to come back someday to provide a great food option for his favorite small towns in Minnesota.” And finally, this dream became reality. Armed with experience and passion, Chef Matthew took over La Ferme, which was called Broadway Bistro at the time, on April 1st 2012. From the beginning and at the heart of this endeavor, Chef Matthew wanted to ensure his support for local farmers by honoring the food, the land, and the work behind the dishes that would make his restaurant successful. In Matthew’s eyes, it was essential for La Ferme to use healthy, real food made from raw, local ingredients. Chef Matthew was dedicated to farm to fork cuisine from the start. With his California education and working with some of the best minds in the culinary field in the twin cities, his vision is a strong one. He says, “Farm to fork has been strongly instilled into my belief system and it’s something I won’t detract from. I am committed to serving the very best


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food, made out of the very best local product, and supporting local small businesses in the process. Alexandria is ready for this level of cuisine and has proved it by making La Ferme the #1 restaurant on Trip Advisor in Alexandria. The downtown businesses also are great “word of mouth” supporters, directing customers to our doors for a fast delicious lunch or a relaxing fine dining evening meal.” Matthew adds, “Supporting local for us is a value system that was taught to us by our parents long ago! Give back to the community, feed the people what they deserve, and be content with the positive conscience that results with doing it right!” In turn, Matthew and Tanya also believe in shopping local in all aspects of their life. “We shop local for things other than food, especially supporting the small family owned businesses like ourselves; we know how hard it is to make it. We feel local is healthier and more flavorful and just the right way to go when it comes to food. We will only serve the best and we know local, seasonal food is the best.” From the success of La Ferme and beyond, Chef Matthew has a reputation of excellence in Alexandria. The community is certainly happy to have him and La Ferme building new culinary traditions within their community by pushing the boundaries of Fine Dining to a new level. Matthew offers, “We host 5-course dinners with beer and wine pairings each month and they get sold out quickly. We have fast, timeefficient lunches, great table service at our evening meal, and top-notch food at very reasonable prices with high-end beer and wine lists. We support our neighbors and community small businesses. I also teach local community education cooking classes for the school district, can schedule cooking classes for private parties by appointment, and also have inhome chef services.”

The beauty of a homemade and thoughtful meal is what fuels Matthew and makes La Ferme a dining experience worth a visit. “Using made from scratch, raw ingredients means that we know what is in all of our food down to each individual ingredient. This helps people, especially those with dietary restrictions of any type, feel confident and comfortable dining with us at La Ferme,” shares Chef Matthew. “I am an educated chef who can cater to any food needs, and that is refreshing in a world full of food-sensitivities/allergies. My wife is dairy and gluten sensitive, so I understand how hard it is to find a place that you can feel safe for meal choices. I take everything very seriously when it comes to food and when you use local (real) ingredients it is very easy to make healthy and safe food.” Tanya and Matthew invite all, near or far, to make a visit to Alexandria, Minnesota to experience the distinctive La Ferme. “We do have a unique setting; it used to be an old bank, then office space, and now La Ferme.” Matthew adds, “We have a Vault we use as our “Chef ’s Table” where I am able conduct 3 or 5 Course Dinners, by diner request. We also have a “Refuge” for larger groups, meetings, or special events. We have updated our decor to a more “French Farm” theme, and have hung some of my family’s farm pictures on the wall as a focal point and emphasis on farm, family, and fabulous food!” In closing, Chef Matthew Jensen offers the significance of finding and following his passion. And this is something he is grateful for in every day of his work at La Ferme. “I never have to work a day in my life. I do what I love and it makes me happy to serve people the food they deserve to have on their plates: real, local, healthy, and creative. I have stayed true to my customers, the farmers, and ingredients, even if it means making less money or it takes more work to get it on the plate! I will never sacrifice quality at La Ferme.”

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Redhead Creamery S weet D reams are made of C heese

by: MEGAN POEHLER In high school, Alise Sjostrom had a dream. A dream that one day, she would open her own creamery and devote her life to making cheese. Now, that dream has come true thanks to her talent, family, a little luck, and love of cheese. Alise visited Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese company in high school for a 4-H leadership conference. “It was one of the ‘aha’ moments for me and I came home completely

PhotoMAKE by: Becca Dilley 22 IT MINNESOTA

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inspired. My studies and free time was since dedicated to cheese.” She went the to University of Minnesota Twin Cities to study Agricultural Industries and Marketing with a dairy food quality emphasis. After graduating, she worked as a food broker, then moved to Vermont with her husband, Lucas. There, she work for Grafton Village Cheese and learned more about making artisan cheese.


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They then moved to Wisconsin, where she worked for the company she visited in high school, Crave Brothers. When their daughter was born in 2012, they moved back home to Minnesota and put their plan for a creamery to work. They did this by using Kickstarter to get startup cash. “I still remember sitting in our Vermont apartment when my husband Lucas was reading about Kickstarter on the internet.” It was a way to get their brand name out there while raising money. They made a video and launched at the Minnesota State Fair and Minnesota Cheese Festival. Almost 500 backers signed up. Although it was a lot of money, it was only a small percentage of what they needed for the creamery. The rest was covered by loans and grants from the state. After making some practice batches of cheese at the University of Minnesota, Redhead Creamery officially became public in the fall of 2013. Redhead Creamery is an addition to the Jer-Lindy Dairy Farm, owned by Alise’s parents. “It was a way for the farm to grow without adding more cows,” she says. “We are able to provide a one-of-a-kind experience of land to cow to milk to cheese that we love sharing.” She also wanted to share with her daughter, Lucy. “There is nothing that can substitute growing up on a farm.” She likes working with her parents, who are very supportive. “They’re not only part-owners, but fully involved in the day-to-day process of the company. They were thrilled that one of their four daughters was interested in coming back home to the dairy farm.” Alise loves living in Minnesota, with the friendliness of the Midwest. “I think it’s the best place to raise dairy cows and a family.”

Photo by: Becca Dilley

For their cheese, the only use their own cows’ milk. They have a pipeline and tunnel that connects the milking parlor to the cheese plants. This helps them achieve best possible freshness while saving a lot of energy, which is different from other creameries that have more pumping and multiple heating and cooling steps. “The aging rooms are tucked underground and provide a unique environment for our cheese.” The wheels of cheese are aged for a minimum of six months before selling. Alise’s favorite cheese to make is the Lucky Linda Farmhouse aged cheddar. Since their creamery is new, this is the oldest cheese she has. “It’s just starting to

Photo by: Alise Sjostrom

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“We are able to provide a one-of-a-kind experience of land to cow to milk to cheese that we love sharing.”

Photo by: Rolf Hagberg

Alise’s parents, Jerry and Linda Jennissen, Alise, her husband, Lucas, and their daughter, Lucy. develop the flavors that I’m shooting for. I’m really looking forward to trying it at one year.” This cheese has a more savory and earthy flavor than the sweet and sharp cheddar we usually see. At the moment, she is working on a new brie cheese called Little Lucy and a semi-soft bourbon washed cheese, using bourbon from the local Panther Distillery.

cooking classes, and dinners. The creamery offers a full guided walk through of the dairy farm, cheese-making, and cheese sampling. “It’s a great way for people to see cows and baby calves and to make the connection from cow to milk to cheese.” Tour and event information can be found on their Facebook page and website, www.redheadcreamery.com.

For the future of the creamery, Alise plans to expand the kitchen to make more products, like breads, butter, and apple pie for the holidays. She wants people to come to the creamery and experience the products freshly made. This summer, they will start serving beer and wine to guests to taste with the cheese while they relax. She also plans to host cheese tastings,

Redhead Creamery’s products can be found at their location in Brooten, as well as Kowalski’s Food Markets and food co-ops in the Metro area, and on their website. “We’re so excited to be part of the artisan cheese boom that’s happening in Minnesota right now. Having the ability to invite people to our farm and cheese plant is something that we thoroughly enjoy and look forward to in the years to come.”

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by: LEAH KURTH What animal is small, nibbles on veggies, and periodically looks more like a living cotton ball than a four-legged friend? Angora rabbits! These docile bunnies are bred for their long, thick wool hair, which is shorn like a sheep’s every few months. Nestled among the hills outside of Clarks Grove, MN, you’ll find Angora Gardens, a small farm known for producing exquisitely soft and warm wool blended from their own rabbit and sheep wool. This material is ideal for knitting and hand spinning, and makes beautiful scarves, sweaters, toys, and more.

Clarks Grove, MN Angora Gardens began in 2005, when Mary Hubly and her daughter brought home two angoras from a fiber fair. A homeschooling mom, Mary always looked for extra ways to help educate her children, including taking part in raising the animals on their farm. When asked what inspired her to start raising angora rabbits for fiber, Mary remarks, “The rabbits themselves are an inspiration! Matched with children who really need so much more than a textbook education, but rather someone and something to love, something to do and something to think about.”

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What started as a family hobby has grown into a successful small business, though they weren’t always known as Angora Gardens. “Angora Gardens is our second name. We were first Shepherd’s Garden, of course living out of our love for our Good Shepherd, Jesus. We were trying to do God’s will in our everyday, especially embarking on a little cottage business. We all know our lives are places where God’s love grows, a sort of garden – weeds and all, and we especially need him to help us… daily! The first inspiration the Dear Lord gave us was that no one would know we were selling Angora Rabbits if we didn’t say so in our name, thus, Angora Gardens!” Mary hasn’t always been so familiar with gardens though. She says, “I have lived in Minnesota for nearly 40 years having grown up in tropical Chicago. I entered the Board of Trade building day in and day out as a legal secretary… until one day, a very wonderful farmer asked me to marry him and brought me to Minnesota to raise a family. Even though I had dealt with the Stock Exchange, now it was livestock… so much better!” She has called Minnesota home ever since, commenting, “We have loved raising our family on a little farm … such a blessing sometimes I feel like we’re spoiled.” Living in this northern state has influenced more than her lifestyle. When asked what about living in Minnesota has had the greatest impact on Angora Gardens, she quickly replies, “MITTENS! Love mittens, need mittens, have children who lose mittens and require warmth ten months out of the year. So, if I had to grow my own wool to produce those many mittens and try to sell some along side the need, AND be able to do this with my husband and children… I made the most of being carried off to the tundra!” Angora Gardens has worked hard over the years to produce and develop the best quality fiber from their rabbits and sheep. Mary comments, “ Our most original product is really our yarn – angora wool all by itself is not a very practical wool for any kind of textile, but blended with other wool it makes a truly one-of-a-kind yarn. I wasn’t sure how our adventure would go because the only other place you can find an angora blend yarn is in the manufactured market. These are expensive yarns and so more of a specialty yarn. We like to think of our yarn as special yarn, not luxury - it comes from the farm and is sent to the fiber mill to be spun, it is simple, lovely and very practical. Someone can make a sweater if they wish, keep extra warm and have a durable, beautiful knit without the itch of all wool.”

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When asked why she blends the rabbit and sheep wool, she replies, “Blending the angora with sheep wool compliments both wools. Angora has no elasticity where sheep wool does. Angora is silky and fine, sheep wool has crimp and body. It’s a perfect match. We’ve grown to prefer Corriedale, RomeldaleCVM, Cormo and Shetland. We decided that if we are going to go to all this work with such a fine wool, it really needs to be matched with just as lovely (in terms of fineness) a wool from the shepherd too. So, we don’t use the coarser breeds. It’s taken us years to experiment a little with some different breeds, but these are our standard. Corriedale is a lovely medium wool, beautiful crimp and soft. Romeldale is especially fine, in fact so much so, it needs tender loving care with processing, but makes our finest yarn. Shetland is very soft with a longer crimp and has its own unique properties when blended, especially softness.” Having this specialty yarn directly from the farm helps to make Angora Gardens’ products stand out from the crowd. “Knitters know this is something that came directly from a rabbit and sheep to them. Even better are our handspun yarns that are just made here in our home and delivered fresh off the wheel … it’s a home and hearth, family business and in our culture that’s different!” Angora Gardens sells a variety of products as well as rabbits, including raw fiber, wool batts, roving, natural yarn, knitting patterns, and more. Mary’s top selling product is their Snowdrop yarn, named after a garden plant like all their yarns, a blend of white Romeldale and white Angora. She comments, “It’s hard to keep this in stock because pure white is not easy to get off of an animal, so the good, clean fibers are rarer. This blend is also so soft and non-itch that it can be worn next to even the baby’s skin.” Other favorite products include the “Momma’s Mittens” pattern, adapted from her mother’s pattern for babies’ mittens, and their Snowdrop Roving, pure white and perfect for handspinners. All these products can be purchased on-line at angoragarden.com and at several fairs throughout the year: Shepherd’s Harvest in Lake Elmo, YarnOver, the Minnesota Knitter’s Guild’s yearly fiber market in Hopkins, and the fall Alpaca Festival in Hopkins. Mary mentions how, “packaging up something that is home-grown and sent off to someone’s home to be knit into something lovely is a heartfelt happiness!”

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Jule’s Loft Wild Bird Treats by: LEAH KURTH

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atching birds is an activity that many enjoy. Whether it’s out in nature or from your kitchen window, it’s fun to see them flit and fly, hear their songs, marvel at the different varieties, and look for your favorites. Rather than seeking out their feathered friends, a lot of people entice the birds to come to them with outdoor feeders. Jule’s Loft Wild Bird Treats creates the perfect feeders to attract birds to your home.

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It all started in 2011, when Jule Rentz made Easter baskets filled with solid seed bird treats for the songbirdloving grandchildren of a friend with cancer. “The first products were born from this. One was an egg carton filled with 6 eggs that my friend encouraged me to sell at our local bird store,” Jule remarks. Since then, she’s developed her products into all shapes and sizes and found the perfect ingredient. She says, “Over the years we’ve added more designs & we now use only one kind of seed because of it’s amazing qualities. Organic Golden Safflower is high in oils, fats and proteins. It is also nonGMO. The seed’s thinner hull allows even the tiniest of birds to enjoy it. Big birds like grackles, starlings, & blackbirds don’t like it. And as an added bonus, squirrels dislike the taste of the seed and leave it alone.” By combining objects found in nature and organic seed, Jule and her husband create solid artistic shapes that they call “Edible Garden Art.” “My husband & I work together, each quietly taking on our roles & sharing in the delight our feeders bring to many people. Each piece is different, modern & enjoyable to look at as well as bringing wild songbirds closer into view. The process takes 3-5 days: heat, pressure, freeze, & dry.” They handcraft each piece in Waconia, Minnesota, and like to incorporate rocks, twigs, and other objects that Minnesota’s natural environment shares into their designs for added flair.

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When asked what inspires her to create her feeders, Jules replies, “I have always had a passion for nature. I love being surrounded by modern, minimal design. With a love of bird watching, it all just fell into place.” She also creates these products to inspire, saying, “Adults & children look at our feeders with wonder in their eyes. We hope we inspire young minds to learn about the many birds right in their own backyards, growing up to respect & care for these tiny winged beings. What truly makes me happy about what our small company has done, comes from our customers. Everywhere we go we hear from customers about the joy brought to them or their loved ones from watching the antics of the birds on our products.”

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Jule and her husband sell their feeders in many locations. “We show & sell our designs at many farmers markets & fine arts & craft shows to introduce our wild bird treats to our customers. Our shows are close to shops that then sell our designs so we can be easily found in your neighborhood year round.” They also sell their wares through their retail program. Jules says, “We have set up a number of retailers who have loosely defined geographic areas. We then promote these retailers through our website, social media, and in-person shows. The intention and the result is to drive business back in to the community – to Shop Local – to Shop Small.” All their products, schedule of events, and store finder can be found on their website, www.julesloft.com


Minnesota Kitchen by Megan Poehler

Foley Food Mill:

Summer Drinks For this issue’s Minnesota Kitchen, we tried out a selection of summer drinks that are perfect for relaxing at a the lake, lounging on the patio, and spending time with the family in the backyard.

The next drink is the perfect refresher for those hot summer days. We start with a simple limeade and combine it with raspberries and mint for a cool, tart kick.

This first recipe is an easy version of iced mocha coffee. Instead of spending money every morning on your daily coffee, have this ready in the fridge for a refreshing start to your morning (or afternoon!). The best thing about this recipe is that it can be customized to match your regular coffee order. Substitute the chocolate for sugar, or add your favorite mix-in, like caramel or cinnamon.

The final drink is a twist on the classic iced tea. What says “summer” better than fresh berries? We take freshly brewed black tea and mix it together with the sweet taste of blueberries. This trio of drinks is sure to satisfy your thirst as the days get hotter. Stay cool! SUMMER 2015

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Iced Mocha Coffee

Ingredients: - 8 cups strong brewed coffee - 1/3 cup hot cocoa mix - 1/2 cup sugar - 8 cups milk Directions: • Brew your favorite coffee, doubling the amount of coffee grounds you would use normally. (This will make strong coffee that will be diluted down with the milk and ice.) Pour coffee into a heat-safe container or pitcher. • While coffee is still hot, stir in a half cup of hot cocoa mix and a half cup of sugar. Sugar can be measured to taste. • When this is dissolved, chill in refrigerator. • After the mix is cold, transfer to pitcher (if not already), and add 8 cups of milk. • To serve, pour coffee over glass filled with ice. Shake or stir pitcher each time before serving.

Mint Raspberry Limeade

Ingredients: - 4-6 limes - 1 cup sugar or honey - Water - Frozen or fresh raspberries - Fresh mint Directions: • Roll limes on a counter top with the palm of your hand. Cut limes in half and juice them by hand or with a juicer, about ⅔ cup. Transfer juice and rinds to a large pitcher. • Bring 2 cups water to a boil in small saucepan. Add sugar or honey, stir until dissolved. Pour into pitcher and add 8 cups water. Stir until well-blended. Add more sugar or honey if desired. Mix in a few sprigs of mint. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Remove rinds. • To serve, pour over ice in a glass and add two tablespoons of raspberries. Garnish with mint and lime slice.

Blueberry Tea

Ingredients: - 1 lb of fresh blueberries - 5 bags of black tea - 2 T and ⅔ cup sugar - Water Directions: • Bring 1 quart of water to a boil and remove from heat. Add tea bags and cover for 1 hour. • Place the blueberries, 2 T sugar, and 3 T water into a blender and liquify into a smooth paste. Set aside. • When tea is finished steeping, add ⅔ cup sugar and stir until dissolved. Pour into pitcher and stir in 1 quart water with blueberry mixture. Refrigerate 1 hour. Strain to remove pulp if desired. Pour over ice in a glass to serve. Enjoy! (Recipe from ladybehindthecurtain.com)

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Classifieds

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A Big

Fish Story

It all started on a sunny day Or was it raining? Nevermind it doesn’t matter anyway There we were out on the glassy lake I mean the waves were huge And I thought the boat would break. We were in close to some reeds And bam; I thought I’d caught on some weeds. I was stuck tight, or so it seemed But then it started pulling back Harder than I’d ever dreamed My line was pealing My poll was bent I fought and fought But the line just went Minute after minute I pulled and I reeled An hour passed and still he did not yield Finally I had him up to the boat and then The net came out The fish was caught And I could breathe again That is how it happened and all entirely true That my dear, is how I caught, a fish as big as you

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Make It Minnesota - Summer 2015  

Our Summer issue featuring stories from Redhead Creamery LLC, Chicago Bay Marketplace, Far North Spirits, Angora Gardens, Jules Loft, and mo...

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