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design | cuisine | art | culture | architecture

august 2018

edition 11





On the Cover: Molly Yeh When in doubt, add sprinkles! In the East Grand Forks kitchen of Molly Yeh, this mantra is a recipe for success. A transplant from the Chicago suburbs, Yeh married into the farm life, learned to embrace the country and eventually started a food blog to chronicle her kitchen endeavors. Her blog, my name is yeh, became the perfect avenue to fuse her Jewish and Chinese heritage with Midwest comfort food and family favorites. Nearly one month ago, Yeh debuted her Food Network series, Girl Meets Farm, giving viewers a glimpse inside her sweet and sprinkled passion for food, family and the farm. Learn more about Molly on page #34. Cover Photography By: Chantell & Brett Quernemoen



Architect Travis Miller: Paradise on the Peninsula Just 30 minutes North of Brainerd, nestled in the red pines of Whitefish Lake, the home of Kevin and Cindy Roberg is a testament to creative architecture and distinguished design. To create their dream home on the peninsula, the couple assembled their dream team with Travis Miller of TWM Architecture, Brittany Wille of Redstone Interiors and contractor Jake Wille. Together, they would design and build a rustic, contemporary home that would gather the family for generations to come.


Accent Contracting: Minnesota Beach Makeover

Chris Hawley Architects: Hub41


Lindsey Grace Interiors: Designing a Dream Wedding When Lindsey Christie, an interior designer with Lindsey Grace Interiors, decided to share her big day with our readers, we knew it was going to be something spectacular. Working with an all-star team including Sadie’s Couture Floral & Event Styling, Uppercase L Photography, Acres & Company and Lettering By Samantha - this event did not disappoint. You’re cordially invited to take a peek inside the wedding of the year, at the stunning Grand Forks destination, Sky’s Fine Dining.


Western Products: Celebrating 70 Seamless Years


Mosaic Design + Build: Restoring Home Mosaic Design + Build is not your typical remodeling contractor. Owners Melanie and James Iverson were recently remarried and know a thing or two about rebuilding broken pieces to redefine a space, or their own life...hence the name “Mosaic”. With Melanie as the interior designer and James as the project manager, we were thrilled to go on a journey with them as they gave us a tour of three recent remodels, with the last one offering a glimpse of their own fixer-upper. See how this dynamic duo is perfecting the art of restoring home.


#RedBallProject: Countdown to F-M’s Public Art Debut



Midwest Nest Magazine is a monthly print and online publication which features content and photography focusing on culture, entertaining and home design.



susan hozak-cardinal

dan francis photography m. schleif photography j. alan paul photograph chantell & brett quernemoen uppercase l photography scott amundson western products angela dirkes-ridl - foto art & design chelsie elizabeth photography brit worgan tom martin kurt perschke

EDITOR tracy nicholson


ADVERTISEMENT DESIGNER alison monke, creative monke dennis krull, 5foot20 design lounge

COPY EDITORS kelly schulz tracy nicholson


CONTRIBUTORS molly yeh lindsey christie tracy nicholson

mitch rapp


susan hozak-cardinal tracy nicholson kari lugo patty nystrom

MIDWEST NEST MAGAZINE 4150 40th Avenue South, #310 Fargo, ND 58104 Read Midwest Nest Magazine online each month at For subscription requests go to For advertising inquiries in Midwest Nest Magazine or on, call 701-640-3284 or email Midwest Nest Magazine, LLC, Copyright 2017, Midwest Nest Magazine and All rights reserved. This publication cannot be reproduced without written permission of Midwest Nest Magazine. Midwest Nest Magazine will not be held responsible for any errors found in the magazine. Midwest Nest Magazine, LLC accepts no liability for statements made by advertisers.

SOCIAL MEDIA susan hozak-cardinal tracy nicholson




Yay for Yeh! About a year ago, we started to hear the name Molly Yeh pop up in conversations all over Fargo-Moorhead. This was a name that was always followed by sugary words like sprinkles, cakes and icing - a combination that clearly spurred admiration from child bakers and grown-up foodies alike. What could be so different about her baked goods that people everywhere seemed to be discussing them in-depth? Oh, and it wasn’t just her sweet treats, it was her hotdishes too. Yep, you read that right, hotdishes. Somehow, this local was creating a throw-back phenomenon in the world of foodies. After a bit of following her crumb trail through the vast expanse of social media, to her farm in East Grand Forks, we finally understood the growing interest. Not only is she adorable, humble and cultured, she’s also wildly and artistically talented. In other words, seeing is believing. So, if you haven’t checked out her award-winning cookbooks, food blog, or brand-new Food Network show, Girl Meets Farm - now’s the time to get to know our neighbor to the North. In other exciting news, we are making huge strides in expanding our distribution. In addition to the F-M area, readers can now find Midwest Nest in grocery stores throughout Grand Forks, Wahpeton, Breckenridge and Fergus Falls. We even have a few select locations in Detroit Lakes and Bismarck. With my publisher’s family from Grand Forks, and my own from Fairmount (just south of Wahpeton), making sure magazines get to our entire region is a mission that is near and dear to our hearts. Special thanks to our family and friends that have volunteered their time, mileage and efforts to make this possible. Next month marks our one-year anniversary and we couldn’t be happier to share it with our readers. Although we rarely need a reason to throw a party, this is a pretty great one. Stay tuned as we will soon be announcing our upcoming celebration. As always, thank you for reading! With Midwest regard,

Tracy Nicholson

Editor, Tracy Nicholson



Contributors + Team Susan Hozak-Cardinal

Kari Lugo

Hozak-Cardinal is Midwest Nest’s publisher and owner. She graduated from Minnesota

Fargo native, Lugo partnered with Midwest Nest to specialize in business development

State University Moorhead with a BS, and then from the University of Mary, Fargo Center,

and advertising sales. Twenty years in media have taken her through national radio,

with an MBM. Hozak-Cardinal is the Marketing Director and Office Manager at Friendly

television, and film markets as well as global newspaper brands, giving her an interesting

Smiles Cosmetic Dentistry and a REALTOR® at Beyond Realty. She is also co-owner of The

palette of experience. Upon her return to the Midwest five years ago, Lugo has held

Private Collection, a furniture rental business in Fargo.

positions in both media and marketing in Fargo. She is happy to be living and working back in her hometown again, where she is also a caregiver for her mother, who has ALS.

Kelly Schulz Schulz is Midwest Nest’s Copy Editor and works full time in marketing at Butler Machinery Company’s corporate office in Fargo, N.D. She has a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications from Minnesota State University Moorhead and a Master of Business Administration from University of Mary. She resides in North Fargo with her husband and two children. In her spare time she enjoys camping, thrifting, chalk paint projects, pretending to read books for book club and chasing after her little ones.

Scott Amundson Amundson is an architectural, interiors and lifestyle photographer. A native of St. Paul, Minnesota he studied photojournalism at the University of Minnesota. He has worked with many talented commercial and residential architects, interior designers and builders across the United States. His works have been published by several national architectural and design publications across the country. He has had his own company for 30 years. You can see more of his work at



Dan Francis

Dennis Krull

Francis is the lead photographer for Midwest Nest and owner of Dan Francis Photography

Krull is the owner and creative at 5foot20 design lounge in Moorhead, M.N., where on any

in Fargo, N.D. He is Fargo’s only Master, Photographic Craftsman and Certified Professional

day you will find him working as a designer, photographer and artist. He received his BFA

Photographer. Francis is currently vice president of the Professional Photographers of N.D.

in Graphic Design from MSUM. He creates and photographs for many different businesses,

and past board member of the FMVA. Francis brings 15-years of experience and quality

both locally and nationally. When he is not designing or working in photography, he can

work to Midwest Nest, contributing stunning home, art and portrait images to our pages.

be found creating art with his encaustic medium. He is currently president of Gallery 4

He is looking forward to showing readers his unique approach to his art that you won’t

artist co-op in Downtown Fargo.

see anywhere else. Francis works out of his downtown Fargo studio and can be found at

Alison Monke

Morgan Schleif

Monke is the owner and designer at Creative Monke in Fargo, N.D. As Midwest Nest’s lead

Schleif is a contributing photographer and is the photographer and founder of M.Schleif

advertising designer, Monke brings multi-faceted experience working with a variety of

Photography. With a degree in Graphic Design and Public Relations from Concordia

companies in their design and marketing departments. She received her BFA in Graphic

College, she found photography to be a natural combination in serving her abilities with

Design from MSUM. Monke has worked on everything from t-shirts and brand strategies to

people and composition. She has a passion for connection, community, and creativity

websites. She is currently a full-time freelance designer helping many small to medium-

which leads to endless opportunities in the F-M area. Her style is less ‘posed’ and geared

sized businesses and non-profits in the F-M area. Monke designed Midwest Nest’s logo

toward capturing a realistic impression of whomever she is photographing- allowing her

and works closely with our team to create branding strategies and bring expertise to

clients to be themselves and fully embrace their current phase of life. A photographer by

ad designs, helping local businesses speak their own brand and capture the audience’s

day and pint pourer by night at Junkyard Brewing Company, she is an extrovert who is

attention. Find Monke’s work at

most inspired by atmospherics, conversation, and human expression. She is eager to add her take on the vibrant lifestyle that is Fargo, North Dakota to Midwest Nest. To find more of her work, connect with her on Facebook or Instagram @ Mschleif Photography, or view her full portfolio at

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Hub41 Words by Tracy Nicholson

Photography by Scott Amundson

The beachside strip of West Lake Drive in Detroit Lakes, Minn., is easily one of the summer’s hottest lakeside destinations. It’s home to Lakeshirts, Lakeside Tavern & Brewery, Zorbaz, The Pavilion and a slew of beach bums ready to relax and bury their toes in the sand. Last summer, the strip got a little hotter with the opening of Hub41, a new restaurant designed by Chris Hawley Architects and owners Gretchen and Nate Hunter. See how this team created the perfect beach bum hang out with a stunning rooftop view and eclectic surf and turf menu.


Taking advantage of an old water park site that had been sitting vacant, owners Gretchen and Nate Hunter, set their sights on creating a new concept in beach dining. Just a stone’s throw away from their other property, the Fairfield Inn & Suites, this corner spot on the strip would provide a beach bum experience worth the drive. Wanting a casual beach vibe and killer lake views, the two recruited the help of Fargo’s Chris Hawley Architects to design their vision, and Detroit Lakes contractor, Josh Lessman, to build it.

CREATING A CONCEPT When the Hunters built the nearby hotel, Fairfield Inn & Suites, they left a pad site that was originally intended for a single-story building. “The only stipulation was that it had to be 3,800 square feet on one level. We actually went back to the county and asked if we could split it into two - that would put us at 1,800 square feet on each level,” said architect Chris Hawley. “We just saw that on the first level, you can kind of see the lake, but mainly the view is of parking and boats. If we added a second level, guests would be able to take in the entire view of Detroit Lakes. In this project, the design had to more about the view than the building.”




For Chris Hawley Architects, their design process started with a little outside inspiration. “We looked at ideas from a restaurant in Minnetonka that they liked - there were also a few residential projects that they thought were funky and pretty cool,” said Hawley. “I think the one thing they wanted was to differentiate themselves by not having the classic cabin forms you’d expect. They didn’t want the cutesy cottage feel - they wanted it to be more contemporary and edgy and just have a little more fun with it in terms of design” “Really the whole project was about creating the perfect rooftop patio,” explained Hawley. “So, when you look at it, the design’s success is determined by having as many people sit outside as possible. This is a year-round restaurant, but like all lake restaurants, their whole livelihood is based on three months of having access to the exterior.”



On the exterior, a sleek, contemporary design,

Like many larger lakes, the wind can take a toll

bold pops of mod color and a tiki bar-type patio

on anything near the shoreline. With a rooftop

are bound to lure you in. But, look a little closer

patio plan in place, the team needed to ensure

and you’ll see an ancient Japanese technique.

that guests would get a calm dining experience

The black siding is all charred wood, also known

versus being literally blown away. “Rooftop patios

as shou sugi ban. “The owners actually did the

are great, but if you’re getting drilled by the wind,

charring. The beautiful thing about it is that once

nobody is going to enjoy it. To solve this, we used

you char it, it has natural weather, rot and UV

black glass as a windbreaker about five-feet in the

resistance, so you basically don’t have to touch

air. When you’re sitting up there, you feel pretty

it again. Bugs don’t like it and creatures don’t like

tucked in and it gives you a nice little break from

to live in it.”

the wind,” said Hawley.

To fabricate the exterior signage using steel and exposed bolts, Chris Hawley Architects employed a hefty foundation to ensure stability for the massive, backlit logo.

“This is obviously a fun strip down in Detroit Lakes and a building like nothing else on the beach.” Chris Hawley, Chris Hawley Architects



INSIDE HUB41 Creating the perfect destination for beachgoers meant designing a bar and dining experience that would be fun, creative and non-fussy - a place where flip-flops and beach towels would be welcomed attire.

Guests will find a crisp white palette with details like black plywood with cedar strips, industrial plumbing






fireplace, a contemporary twist on sliding barn doors and birch bench seating. “The details are pretty fun, they did some really great workmanship and yet it’s not fussy, it’s simple and creative,” said Hawley. “Josh Lessman did all of the construction on this project - he did a really great job, especially considering it was a very fast-track kind of project - we started in Nov and it was open by May of last year.”

EMBRACING THE OUTDOORS To bring the outside in, the design playfully utilizes the exterior siding elements and cedar slat detailing. Both levels feature an overhead garage door making the exterior and interior a unified space. “The cool thing is that no matter where you’re sitting in the bar, you’re looking at the lake,” said Hawley. “Instead of your back turned to the water and the bartender looking out, it’s the opposite. This is obviously a fun strip down in Detroit Lakes and a building like nothing else on the beach.”



“The one thing about doing an overhead door is that you can’t do anything overhead, so you have really limited storage in that area. The cedar slat details were one of the solutions to get as much storage as we can in a space that is occupied by an overhead door,” said Hawley. “The exterior siding became storage shelving for the bottles, glasses and other bar items.”

If you’d rather grab a booth, the dining areas offer plenty of natural light and interesting design details to create a true beachside experience. “This is just a really durable design and a little wear and tear will only give it more character. The blue material panel is all technically, exterior siding, but we’re using it in a pretty economical way,” said Hawley. “In other areas, the same siding that we painted blue, we just painted black and screwed on the batton. I think of it like the rainscreen is the black panel, but then the wood is kind of the armor. This project is a very economical approach to design. It really takes common materials and uses them in a very creative way, but not breaking the budget.”



ON THE MENU If you think the design is creative, just wait until you experience their menu featuring weekend breakfast, lunch and dinner. “They have really good food, with kind of a funky menu - I’d say it’s a modern interpretation of a surf and turf,” said Hawley. For a taste of what Hub41 offers lunch and dinner guests, starters include the falafel, California sushi rolls, sweet potato nachos, Cajun shrimp bucket, Scotch eggs and lobster fries. Dinner will definitely delight with eclectic entrees like the shrimp po’ boy, muffuletta, chicken and waffles along with gnocchi mac and cheese, fish and chips and bangers and mash.

For more information, contact: Hub 41 104 West Lake Drive, Detroit Lakes 218.844.8488

Find the Finishes:

Architecture & Interior Finishes - Chris Hawley Architects

Project Manager - Wayne Schommer, Chris Hawley Architects Contractor - Josh Lessman, Ledgestone, Inc.

Chris Hawley Architects 2534 University Dr #3, Fargo 701.478.4600

Ledgestone, Inc. 421 West Main Suite 104, Detroit Lakes 218.849.6140

Designing Our Dream Wedding Words by Lindsey Christie Photography by Uppercase L Photography



As an interior designer and local business owner, my work becomes quickly intertwined with my personal life, and I truly wouldn’t want it to be any other way. This past November, I started my business Lindsey Grace Interiors in Fargo, N.D. That same month, my now husband Jared, proposed and we decided to purchase our first home. It’s safe to say this past year has been the busiest, but most fulfilling year yet. I am so grateful that my amazing clients share so much of their daily lives, dreams and every part of their journey with me. It’s that connection that takes any project to the next level. For that reason, it was an easy decision to share the most special day of our lives with you all - and the journey it took to design our dream wedding.

Lindsey Christie, Lindsey Grace Interiors

Sadie Garner, Sadie’s Couture Floral & Event Styling

THE DETAILS Of course, the biggest decision is setting the date, and everything flows from there. We had


our engagement pictures taken in Minneapolis

I knew exactly how I wanted the evening to look

My business has been created off of my experience

immediately after becoming engaged because I

and feel, but I also knew that planning an event

working in both New York City and Minneapolis, but

wanted to make the most of the fall foliage. We

for 200 plus people wasn’t my area of expertise.

also the needs and wants of the local community.

had an instant connection with our photographer,

I quickly enlisted Sadie’s Couture Floral & Event

As a designer, one of my top goals is to always

Amanda at Uppercase L Photography and when

Styling in Grand Forks. I had been to several

listen to what my clients want, while bringing a

she agreed to come to Grand Forks to photograph

events that Sadie had created, and an added

fresh new perspective to the Midwest design

our wedding, we were so excited. I knew I wanted a

bonus - one of my best friends from high school is


June wedding, and the 16th has a special meaning

her assistant. After meeting with Sadie and Jalen,

for us in many ways. Also, a deciding factor was

I knew they would make the perfect team to bring

In 2010, Sadie sold her floral company in Minneapolis

that it was the only Saturday in June that Amanda

my dreams to reality.

and moved back to Grand Forks, bringing her talent

wasn’t already booked.

for event planning with her. Clients would come Through working with Sadie I also learned that she

to her with their ideas and style boards, but the

I had never realized the huge role good photography

and I share a similar background. I recently moved

elements were just not readily available in North

plays the day of the wedding. Amanda and her

my career from Minneapolis to Fargo. I absolutely

Dakota. For that reason, Sadie scaled her business

co-shooter, Trish, kept our timeline running so

love the Fargo community, the growth, and of

to offer floral and specialty decor elements to

smoothly while capturing every special moment of

course the people. There truly is no place like it.

meet the demands of the local community.

the day.

For the venue, I knew I wanted something different, fun and intimate. Growing up in Grand Forks, most special occasions for our family are spent celebrating at Sky’s. When we approached them to host our reception, they agreed and I was ecstatic. We had several meetings to narrow down the details. This included the food, of course, but also the cocktails, service and overall layout of the event.

THE BIG DAY Each guest was able to start the cocktail hour with

brisket, mashed potatoes and asparagus.

our signature cocktails. Mine was the “Blushing Bride”, a spin-off of a cosmopolitan, and Jared

I also wanted to make sure our wedding was

decided on a cucumber Moscow mule we named

personal. I brought the ideas and the entire team

the “Mister Mule”.

executed them perfectly. I knew I wanted our wedding to feel feminine and gorgeous, but also

For dinner, the chef did an amazing job. We served

relaxed and fun. The first thing we decided on was

grilled, Faroe Island king salmon, finished with

the color scheme. It all started the same way most

Sky’s famous North Dakota prairie sauce with a

clients bring me their inspiration for their homes -

black bean rice and the most wonderful smoked

a Pinterest board.



We decided on French blue floor length linens, mixed with blush pink, ivory and gold details. Since the decor of Sky’s leans more toward a masculine and industrial feel, we had to work on how to blend the two very different styles. We decided to remove all the existing chairs in the restaurant other than a few of the French round back chairs at the head table. Then we brought in gold chivaris chairs, complemented with gold charger plates at each table setting. To bring in the blush, ivory and gold in the color scheme, we turned to the floral arrangements. My all-time favorite flowers are peonies, so we mixed those in with a gorgeous combination of hydrangeas, roses and ruscus greenery. To bring in the drama, Sadie created arrangements of various heights based off of various table sizes. The French blue candles and brass holders created such a romantic feel.



I am obsessed with stationery and I put a lot of time and detail in selecting and designing our invitations. I wanted them to match the feel of our entire wedding day, and also be super functional when it came to navigating the day and of course RSVPs. I chose Shine Wedding Invitations and they were so easy to work with.

For the place cards and table numbers, I found a wonderfully talented local business - Lettering By Samantha. Samantha created custom marble tiles with each guest’s name and table number to help navigate the seating chart. She also designed and created each table number to coordinate. Each place setting had a tiny box of pink macaroons, which were baked locally by Acres & Company.

One of the biggest challenges of our venue was the strict number of guests that we could seat. For that reason, we expanded the seating area to the skywalk connected to the restaurant. It created a unique experience for our guest to be able to dine over the passing traffic and be immersed in all of the downtown action. Our head table was placed in the center of the restaurant. I loved this idea because we were surrounded by all of our loved ones.


SWEETS + SETTINGS Not only did Mindy of Acres & Company make the tiny macaroon gift boxes, but she also created an entire dessert buffet. Along with our three-tier cake, we had mini 6� naked cakes, cake pops and cupcakes. This was a huge hit with our guests and each item received raving reviews. I sourced our custom cake topper from Etsy along with the bride and groom signs on the back of our head table chairs. Paper Petals By Sophie created a gorgeous backdrop for the dessert table with custom paper flowers to match our color scheme.




Wedding Day Breakdown: Design - Lindsey Christie, Lindsey Grace Interiors Event decor & floral - Sadie’s Couture Floral & Event Styling Photographer - Amanda Hammarstedt, Uppercase L Photographer & Trish Burtzel Venue - Sky’s, Grand Forks Food & drink - Sky’s Fine Dining, Grand Forks Reception stationery & marble tiles - Lettering By Samantha Cake & desserts - Acres & Company Paper floral decor - Paper Petals By Sophie Invitations - Shine Wedding Invitations Cake topper & bride/groom signs - Etsy

For more information, contact: Last minute, I decided to place polaroid cameras next to our guest book, to create a fun little photo booth-feel on our dance floor during the cocktail hour. It was so fun to look back on, not only the sweet messages everyone left us, but also have fun pictures of everyone that came to celebrate. It was truly the best day of our lives. It’s all because of our amazing family, friends and of course each one of the amazing vendors that contributed to our day!

Lindsey Grace Interiors - Fargo 701.330.6008

Sadie’s Couture Floral & Event Styling 899 2nd Avenue North, Suite 1 - Grand Forks 701.317.3255







Yay for Yeh! Words by Tracy Nicholson, Molly Yeh Photography by Chantell & Brett Quernemoen

When in doubt, add sprinkles! In the East Grand Forks kitchen of Molly Yeh, this mantra is a recipe for success. A transplant from the Chicago suburbs, Yeh married into the farm life, learned to embrace the country, and eventually started a food blog to chronicle her kitchen endeavors. Her blog, my name is yeh, became the perfect avenue to fuse her Jewish and Chinese heritage with Midwest comfort food and family favorites. A few impressive awards, thousands of followers and a best-selling cookbook later, Yeh’s kitchen creativity had officially caught the eye of Food Network. Nearly one month ago, Yeh debuted her TV series, Girl Meets Farm, giving viewers a glimpse inside her sweet and sprinkled passion for food, family and the farm.




GIRL MEETS FARM In the seven-episode series, Girl Meets Farm, Yeh gives Food Network viewers a glimpse inside her life and kitchen on their East Grand Forks farm. While her nostalgic, farmhouse kitchen creates a worldly fusion of cuisine and sweets, many would say it’s her charm that has stolen the show. Infusing elements of five-star, fine dining with Midwest comfort foods and artfully crafted desserts, Yeh is now one of the most sought-after food bloggers and cookbook authors today.

MOLLY’S MENU If you missed the premiere episode, Yeh made an eclectic buffet for her sister-in-law Anna’s baby shower. On the menu were Fish Tacos with Crunchy Cabbage Slaw and Cilantro Dressing, Pigs in a Blanket with Harissa Ketchup and Honey Mustard, as well as Molly’s signature Meatball Sliders with a Twist. Molly Yeh and her husband, Nick Hagen

Yeh is the author of the International Association of

As with all of Yeh’s kitchen endeavors, the


Culinary Professionals award-winning cookbook,

experience is not complete without a sweet ending.

Influencing her eclectic cooking style, Yeh grew up

“Molly on the Range.” She is the creator of the

Baked Donuts with Rhubarb, Blood Orange and

in the Chicago suburbs with a Chinese father and

critically-acclaimed and highly popular food and

Blueberry Glaze took center stage on the shower’s

Jewish mother, followed by a post-high school life

lifestyle brand “my name is yeh”, which has been

dessert table. Upcoming episodes feature Yeh’s

in New York City studying percussion at Juilliard.

recognized by the likes of the New York Times,

family visits, girl’s brunch, farm supper, a special

After getting married and starting her food blog,

Food & Wine, New York Magazine, Saveur (“Blog of

anniversary celebration and recipes like her Garlic

Yeh relocated with her husband to a sugar beet

the Year”) and Yahoo (“Food Blog of the Year”). She

and Onion Challah, Dark Chocolate Scone Loaf

farm in East Grand Forks, N.D., where she currently

was also in the ranks of Forbes’ “30 Under 30” list

with Marzipan and Scallion Pancakes with Maple


for 2017.

Carrot Slaw.

MIDWEST NEST MEETS MOLLY YEH! Whether you reside in Grand Forks, Bismarck or Fargo, everyone seems to know everyone, right? It seems nearly impossible that Yeh has managed to quietly create her foodie empire, right in our own backyard. If you haven’t followed her wildly popular food blog, viewed her new show, or ventured to one of her local cookbook signings, now’s your chance to get to know this locally-based talent on a more personal level. Midwest Nest sat down with Yeh to get the lowdown on life on the farm and her new Food Network show, Girl Meets Farm.




How will you fuse your background, culture and

What does your family, community and husband

family into the show?

think of your TV debut and success?

Yeh: Pretty much all of the recipes draw inspiration

Yeh: I think they’re happy as long as they get to be


my first call taste testers!







upbringing and my new surroundings. There will

From growing up near Chicago to settling down on

be a whole episode about Chinese food with my

When you first moved to East Grand Forks, what

dad, an episode with my mom’s brisket and a show

did you feel was the funniest or most surprising

centered around hotdish.

characteristic of the region? Yeh: That people leave their cars running in the

a farm in East Grand Forks, how has this changed

parking lot of the grocery store in the winter.

or inspired you?

What do you want Food Network viewers to take

Yeh: It has opened my eyes to hotdish and cookie

away from Girl Meets Farm?

salad! I thought that adjusting to East Grand Forks

Yeh: How fun, colorful and meaningful food can

Where/how did you first meet your husband and

wouldn’t be very drastic since I grew up in the

be. Cooking for others has always been my favorite

will he be an active part of the show?

Midwest, but the upper Midwest is so different

way to show people that I love them and it’s also

Yeh: In college through mutual friends and yes, he

from the suburbs of Chicago and it has been so

been my window into learning about my heritage

has the best lines of the show! I was at Juilliard

fun and delicious to learn about this whole new

and other cultures, so if I can show others how to

then, focusing on contemporary music.


do the same, then I’ll be satisfied.

What do you think has been the biggest factor in

Who in your life do you consider to be your greatest

Yeh: Cakes. I love baking cakes for anyone, for any

the creation of your lifestyle brand and becoming

inspiration or mentor?

occasion. I also love making hummus and hotdish

an award-winning cookbook author and blogger?

Yeh: My mom is my biggest inspiration in the

for people. I really like using tahini and wish good

Yeh: Hard work. I am definitely inspired by how

kitchen. She’s an amazing cook and baker, and I

tahini was more widely available in the states -

hard my farmer husband and other farmers in the

keep a binder of recipes that she made for me. I

same with marzipan, machlab, naturally colored

area work. At first, I was shocked at the million-

love having them near, it’s like we’re hanging out in

sprinkles and rosewater.

hour days and weekend work days that farmers

the kitchen together.

What are your favorite things to bake/cook?

What is the most challenging recipe you have ever

put in during the season, but then I just thought, well, I guess I’ll just spend that time decorating

For your youngest fans who want to bake and blog,

tried and why?

cakes and blogging about it!

what kind of advice can you offer for pursuing

Yeh: Halva, a Middle Eastern candy that’s like the

their passion?

inside of a Butterfinger but made with ground

When did you find out that you were being

Yeh: Share your unique perspective and story and

sesame seeds. I failed my first few times and it

considered for a Food Network show?

always push yourself to learn and improve. And

was maddening because the ingredients are not

Yeh: When my book Molly on the Range came out.

when in doubt, add sprinkles!

cheap. In retrospect, I think it was because my candy thermometer was broken.

A few folks from the network set up a meeting when I was in New York for the launch and it was

What has life been like since the show debuted on

great! Their offices are right above my favorite

June 24th?

What are some of your favorite restaurants or

hummus place.

Yeh: Really fun because each episode brings

stores in the F-M or Grand Forks areas?

another opportunity to connect with my Instagram

Yeh: Toasted Frog, Rhombus Guys, Darcy’s, Unglued,

Did you film at your farm and what/how long was

friends and see what recipes they’ve been making

Bernbaum’s, India Palace, Kittsona, Zandbroz, Blue

the shoot process?

from the show.

Moose, the Prairie Roots Food Co-op.

Yeh: Yes, we shot the pilot in December and that took a week, and the rest of the season was shot over two-and-a-half weeks in April. From what readers and followers know of you now, is there anything that you will be doing differently on the show? Yeh: I’ll be showing them more of the farm and of Grand Forks than I do on the blog. They’ll see my trusty old Buick boat cruising around town.

“Her passion for food, her family and farm life are front and center in all of her recipes, which are truly written from the heart.” Courtney White, Executive Vice President, Programming, Food Network and HGTV.



Makes one 9� x 13� sheet cake

Cake Ingredients:

Frosting Ingredients:

1 3/4 c. (350g) sugar

1 c. (128g) roasted pistachios (preferably unsalted)

1 3/4 c. (223g) all-purpose flour

1 c. (225g) unsalted butter, softened

1 C. (85g) unsweetened cocoa powder

3 c. (360g) powdered sugar

1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1/8 tsp. kosher salt (omit if pistachios are salted)

1 1/2 tsp. baking powder

2 tsp. vanilla extract

with Pistachio Butter Frosting

1 1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. almond extract

Molly Yeh from my name Is yeh

2 large eggs

zest of 1/2 a lemon

1 c. (240g) buttermilk

2 tbs. heavy cream

Chocolate Sheet Cake

1 tbs. vanilla extract 1/2 c. (100g) flavorless oil

Make the Frosting:

3/4 c. (178g) boiling water

First, make the pistachio butter. In a food processor, blend the pistachios, scraping the sides

Make the Cake:

occasionally, until very creamy and spreadable,

Preheat the oven to 350Âş. Grease and line the

about 5-10 minutes.

bottom of a 9x13 pan with parchment paper. With an electric mixer, beat together the butter and In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour,

pistachio butter until creamy. Add the powdered

cocoa powder, baking powder and baking soda.

sugar and mix to combine and then mix in the

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs,

salt, vanilla, almond extract, lemon zest and then

buttermilk, vanilla and oil. Add the wet ingredients

heavy cream. Spread all over the cake, decorate as

to the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Whisk

desired and enjoy!

in the boiling water. Pour the batter into the cake pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Begin checking for doneness at 25 minutes. Let cool in the pan.





Everything Bagel Galettelettes with Tomatoes & Scallion Cream Cheese Molly Yeh from my name Is yeh

Makes 8 mini galettes

Ingredients: 1 1/2 pounds tomatoes 14-15 oz. pie dough (homemade or store-bought) 1 beaten egg for egg wash

Filling: 8 oz. cream cheese, room temp

Everything Bagel Topping:

3 chopped scallions

1/2 tsp. dried minced garlic

1 egg yolk

1/4 tsp. kosher salt

1 tbs. flour

3/4 tsp. poppy seeds


1 tsp. sesame seeds


1/2 tsp. dried minced onion


Directions: Preheat the oven to 400º. - Slice the tomatoes then lay them out on a paper towel and sprinkle with salt so that some moisture drains out of them. - Divide the pie dough into 8 balls. Roll out each ball into a circle that’s 6 to 7 inches in diameter. - Mix together cream cheese, scallions, egg yolk, flour and pepper until smooth and well-combined. - Mix together the everything bagel topping ingredients in a small bowl and set aside. Brush the edge of the rolled-out dough with egg wash, spread with filling and top with tomatoes. Fold over the edges and pleat. Brush the outside edges with the egg wash and sprinkle with the everything bagel topping.

Follow Molly Yeh! Catch episodes from her TV series, Girl Meets Farm on Food Network, Sundays at 11:00 a.m. Watch video exclusives with Molly Yeh and get how-to’s on cake decorating and making your favorite childhood snacks at Join the conversation on social media using the hashtag #GirlMeetsFarm. Follow Yeh on Facebook and Instagram @mynameisyeh.





Western Products Words by Tracy Nicholson Edited by Erin Thostenson Profile and Office Photography by Dan Francis Photography Celebration Photography by Lori Westland Family Photography by Seventh Street Photography

When we heard Western Products was celebrating 70 years of business, we decided to meet with the team and dig up their deep roots in our Fargo-Moorhead community and beyond. With humble beginnings as specialists in lightning rods and fire control in 1948, to branching out into siding, windows, gutters, roofing, leisure products and cabinetry, we discovered the unique attitude that drives the family-owned business of Mike and Peggy Bullinger.


FROM HUMBLE BEGINNINGS: THEN AND NOW To start our journey to find out what makes Western Products tick, we were taken on a quick tour of their 45th Street home base in Fargo. As we walked through their massive third-floor conference room, we saw with our own eyes how important history is to the company. The modern conference room is married with first-generation timber ceiling beams, salvaged from their old Main Avenue warehouse location, once used to hold up the siding. Western Products’ main level features a customer showroom they’ve aptly named their Design and Experience Center. This is where customers can view real-life house facades along with an array of Renewal by Anderson windows and doors, Crystal cabinetry, Sundance Spas and Hunter Douglas blinds. To learn how Western Products became the region-spanning home improvement company they are today, we sat down with Ray Blaha, General Manager, as well as Kelly McComb, Marketing Manager and daughter of Mike and Peggy Bullinger, to get the background behind the company’s humble beginnings.




opportunities to expand and bring on other

Western Products has come a long way since it

products that fit our customer’s needs…he is very

was founded in the 1940s by Peter Schuck. Back

entrepreneurial; he’s very open-minded when

then, the company was known as a lightning rod

opportunities arise and always willing to explore

distributor. “At that time, it was considered a home

new products and innovative technology that will

improvement to put lightning rods on your roof,”

increase our customer’s experience.”

said Blaha. Even during those small early days, founder Peter Schuck showed the work ethic that can be seen in Western Products today. “He would load his truck up with lightning rods and hit the road, not coming home until they were all sold.” By the 1950s, Western Products expanded to begin working in exterior siding. Blaha described the company as one that has made many industry firsts. “In 1963, they changed the industry by introducing steel siding to the region. Western Products actually received the first load of steel siding ever produced in the United States.”

Ray Blaha, General Manager, Western Products

A much different company than their beginning, they have since become a home improvement icon with locations in Fargo, Bismarck, St. Cloud and Jamestown. Each branch offers exclusive lines of exterior siding, windows, roofing, gutters, soffit and fascia, patio and front doors, cabinetry, window coverings and blinds. They also offer leisure products such as spas and Homecrest outdoor furniture. Unusual to a company of this size, all of their products are installed by their award-winning teams, making certain their premium products are installed with quality care.

GROWING WITH THE TIMES Up until last year, technicians would head out to the job site armed with pen and paper. This year, all of their technicians were outfitted with iPads so they can communicate more efficiently with the team, view floor plans, take before and

The Bullinger family from left; Nikki Nelson, Kelly McComb, Mike & Peggy Bullinger, Toni Sandi.

after pictures, do electronic measurements and

As a family business, some might assume that McComb and her two sisters easily fell into

input orders directly to their system. They’ve

their roles within the company, but it couldn’t be further from the truth. McComb, Nikki

also incorporated the ability for employees and

Nelson and Toni Sandin started early on in their teens - doing everything from mowing

customers to text, something that has made their

lawns and shredding documents to filing paperwork, answering phones and cleaning -

communication with homeowners much easier.

eventually heading off to college to pursue other careers. Although they all chose different paths, marketing, accounting, real estate and law - each daughter still has a role within the

Blaha explained that many of these improvements

company, lending their expertise whenever needed. If you’ve noticed the NKT on the front

have come with the help of Western Products

peak of the building, now you know what (or who) it stands for.

owner, Mike Bullinger: “It’s been a very rewarding experience working with Mike and having the



the company. McComb attributes some of this to the positive work culture: “We have a culture committee that gets together and organizes everything from family events to employee-only, to sporting events and picnics. Even though we might not cross paths at work every day, events like this help us be a unified team.”

“One motto my dad lives by is ‘success or failure in life is caused more by mental attitude than by mental capability.’ ” This is a mantra that Western Products at large, and especially McComb, follows closely. “Now, I catch myself saying it to my own

Mike and Peggy Bullinger, Western Products

kids and my 11-year-old looks at me with a smirk and says, yeah I know, and the younger two look at me like they have no idea what I’m talking about,” laughed McComb.

As the years have passed, Western Products has Western Kelly McComb, Director of Marketing, Western Products

Marketing Manager, Kelly McComb, elaborated on Western Products’ early growth. She explained that part of it was a result of following ethical practices that other home improvement companies didn’t back in the day. “The industry was completely different, especially in how they used sales tactics. Homeowners today are a lot more educated on pricing and products, and we think that’s a good thing. Customers trust our company with making improvements on their home—something that might cost the most money they have ever invested in anything.”

KEEPING A POSITIVE ATTITUDE Western Products is clearly something McComb cares deeply about. After growing up seeing her father, Mike Bullinger, run the company, she gained her Master of Business Administration from NDSU. Now, she’s worked her way up in Western Products from assisting the marketing team to overseeing the entire department.

CREATING A CULTURE & A CAREER Many Western Products employees have turned their “jobs” into careers that anyone would be proud to hold. It’s even become the norm that their employees will retire there, having moved through a succession of roles and branches throughout

Products works

hard to foster an

changed and evolved with the home improvement

environment of good attitude and teamwork.


but the



of their

The company has a program in place where

employees remains the same. McComb explained,

employees handwrite notes to one another to

“We value family and believe it comes first.

show appreciation for all the good work that gets

As a company, we want a workplace where our

done, and company achievements are occasionally

employees can attain career and personal goals

announced through building-wide speakers. “It’s

within a culture that cheers on accomplishments.”

all about cheering each other on and respecting

She is also a firm believer that achieving success in

the people you work with,” said McComb. “It’s

your work, being present in your family, and giving

pretty fun and we get to show appreciation and

back to the community, are important elements

respect for those who work hard for the company.”

that create a fulfilled and happy life.



CELEBRATING 70 YEARS One of these such events was Western Products’ annual picnic that celebrates their long history and the people that make every year a seamless success. For this year’s 70th anniversary, we got a glimpse inside the annual picnic in June. With Western Products’ 70th anniversary, this year’s picnic in Trollwood Park held special meaning to the company team. Over 200 employees from across four business locations gathered with their families in the sunny summer weather to celebrate the employee dedication that helped make their long-standing success possible. What is it that makes Western Products stand out? If you ask General Manager, Ray Blaha, he’d probably tell you that focusing on customer needs over the 70 years of experience goes a long way. “We still get phone calls and repeat business from customers that we worked with 20, 30 or 40 years ago. Sometimes they’ve even worked with the same Western Products salesperson the whole time,” says Blaha. “Now, we have an entire company held accountable for every home improvement we do and we’re not going anywhere.” If you ask McComb the same question, she’d probably say the same thing her father and owner

For more information, contact:

of Western Products, Mike Bullinger, often tells

Western Products

her -”Success is just a matter of attitude, and the

474 45th Street South, Fargo

people who work at Western Products have the

701. 293.5310

best attitudes in the business.”




Paradise on the Peninsula Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by Chelsie Elizabeth Photography



Just 30 minutes North of Brainerd, nestled in the red pines of Whitefish Lake, the home of Kevin and Cindy Roberg is a testament to creative architecture and distinguished design. To create their dream home on the peninsula, the couple assembled their dream team with Travis Miller of TWM Architecture, Brittany Wille of Redstone Interiors and contractor Jake Wille. Together, they would design and build a rustic, contemporary home that would gather the family for generations to come. HISTORY OF DONALDSON ISLAND The Robergs chose the property thanks to their good friend and realtor Rob Birkeland. “He felt the location was special, even though the building envelope was a challenge due to setbacks with the lake on both sides of the parcel of land,” said Kevin Roberg. According to the Robergs, the property had once been owned by Keith Donaldson who was CEO of the Donaldson Companies out of Minneapolis. He had gotten permission in the mid-1900s to link the mainland with what was then called Donaldson Island. “After the road was completed he built the main home and a tennis court. The Donaldson estate was once known as a destination vacation place and became popular for its parties in the 60s, 70s and 80s. Eventually, meeting tough times, Donaldson would subdivide the rest of the land and sell some of the property to others. Where the tennis court once resided, the Robergs envisioned their dream home.


contemporary. They had previously lived in cabins

The Robergs met Miller while working on the

that I would consider more lodge-like. They were

design for their South Dakota property, Sutton Bay

log-sided and had a large volume of spaces. This

Club through RemWhirl. Miller helped design their

time, they wanted something different - cozier and

home on the property where they would move

brighter, but still wanted it to fit with the character

to in 2012. “When we moved away from South

of the neighborhood.”

Dakota, we immediately contacted him as we felt he was a good fit for us since not only was he a






call ‘mountain

talented architect, but one who listened carefully

architecture’, mixing of style and materials, so I

to what his clients were trying to create,” said

studied a lot of homes you’d see in Colorado or

Kevin Roberg. “Plus, we frankly just liked him and

Montana and tried to put my own spin on it,” said

when you design a house, it is in everyone’s best

Miller. “They didn’t want a great deal of square

interest to get along.”

footage, but at the same time, wanted to make the cabin live larger and be comfortable for their day-

From left, Cindy and Kevin Roberg along with architect, Travis Miller


to-day activity as well as host family and friends.

“Kevin and Cindy came to me with concepts and

The lot was the main challenge, getting them the

photos of other cabins, pointing out specific

space they wanted and fitting it onto the property

aspects that they liked of each one. We dissected

with the lake setback and the road setback.” The

the project so I had a clear vision of their goals

lot is 1.8 acres with 1.3 of it considered upland due

and expectations,” explained Miller. “They wanted

to the West bay’s wetland status. The Robergs

something that was rustic but had a light and airy

have 260 feet of frontage on the East lakeshore

feel, so it became a combination of rustic and

and 276 feet on the West wetland side.



Their new lake home would feature four bedrooms and four-and-half baths. Square footage included a 1,395 square-foot basement, 1,649 on the main level with a 764 square-foot garage and 566 square-foot bonus room.



LAKESIDE DESIGN For the Robergs, their interior goal was clean lines with warm tones. The main living space needed to suit their needs as they aged and the natural light needed to be captured. “We wanted lots of windows for light so that we could accentuate the natural beauty of our peninsula lake location,” said Kevin Roberg. “Having the morning sunrise on the main lakeside and the sunsets on the back bay side was a plus we wanted to take advantage of every day.” “Travis was a pleasure to work with since he listens to his customers so well. He is creative yet practical, and constantly keeps ‘value’ of the design at the forefront of what he creates,” said Kevin Roberg. “We had an overall theme of ‘Rustic Contemporary’ and a set of functional criteria main floor living for Cindy and myself, lower level for family and friends, screened porch that would be our main living area and two large wood-burning fireplaces. Travis was the key to putting everything together and it was a true collaboration.”

HEART OF THE HOME To carry their signature style to the heart of the home, the Robergs worked with Scott Ivy of Ivy Cabinets on their gorgeous kitchen, incorporating clean lines and rustic alder textures. “He’s a very talented young man who made a rather small space seem larger due to his ability to create a great deal of storage in a limited space,” said Kevin Roberg.

For the interior’s design, the team worked with

style standpoint. We felt the rustic, contemporary

Brittany Wille of Redstone Interiors. “We had also

style would fit the region, but be more modern

worked with her on our Sutton Bay and Los Cabos

in look, yet very warm in feel.” For the rustic

building projects. Just like Travis, she was creative

collaboration, flooring was chosen in a resawn

yet pragmatic,” said Kevin Roberg. “We had built

white oak, with cabinets and beams in rustic alder

two other lake homes in more of a traditional log

with a stained finish. To achieve the brighter side

or rustic style and felt that now was a time to

of their design, the team relied on enamel-painted,

separate our cabin from the traditional ones from a

poplar ceilings in a 1x6 shiplap.





The Roberg’s screened-in porch has already

A late addition to the original design, Cindy

become a family favorite and daily retreat. “It has

Roberg came up with the idea to incorporate a

tremendous views on three sides, comfortable

guest suite above the garage. The suite features

furniture and a centerpiece fireplace that gets used

its own entrance, living room, bedroom and a

often,” said Kevin Roberg. With the combination

spacious bathroom. “Travis made it happen and

of EzeBreeze windows and the wood-burning

now all our guests want to stay there instead

fireplace, this porch was designed to be utilized

of the main house,” said Kevin Roberg. “We put

nearly year-round.

in a breakfast bar and also a refrigerator so that guests can have their own place to just enjoy. The small deck outside the front entrance also has the best sunset views of the entire property. We call it the ‘Eagles Nest Suite’ since there used to be an eagles nest in a 150-year-old white pine just outside the window next to the bedroom.”




“We love the final product and absolutely love our

Recent changes to the county’s building codes

a wonderful combination office, lakeside bar and

home,” said Kevin Roberg. “We love it so much we

allowed the Robergs to build up to a 120-square-

just plain ‘hangout’ by the lake,” said Kevin Roberg.

created a family cabin trust so that it can remain

foot “boathouse” by the lake, as long as it met

“It has a bar, large bookcase, refrigerator, ice maker

in our family for generations. Our children and

certain setback requirements and building codes.

and chairs that make it a great escape when I need

grandchildren love it too and are often sharing the

“We took advantage of this opportunity and built

to get away.”

home with us.”



INTO THE WOODS “To achieve their rustic, contemporary exterior look, we used a product called Rough Rider, combined





windows and a lot of glass,” said Miller. “Rough Rider is a natural wood siding that has an Eternity Finish. The finish process enhances the grain in the wood and accelerates the weathering process, so ultimately it looks like old reclaimed wood but has the characteristics of new siding which provides the protection needed to make it low maintenance.” For the home’s stunning landscape, the Robergs relied on Reid Price of The Woods Landscaping. “We had worked with Reid on a number of projects over the years and he is very creative, listens well and performs at the highest levels,” said Kevin Roberg. “He turned an old, tired tennis court into a masterpiece, park-like landscape.” Adding to the outdoor appeal, the team managed to save the majority of the mature red pines on the site which helped keep the character of the property.


Find the Finishes:

Miller grew up in Fairmount, N.D., and attended

Architect - Travis Miller, TWM Architecture

NDSU receiving his architecture degree in 2002. “I

Contractor - Jake Wille

had college friends that lived in the Brainerd area

Interior Design - Brittany Wille, Redstone Interiors

and really fell in love with the lakes, woods and

Cabinetry - Scott Ivy, Ivy Woodcraft

all of the outdoor activities available,” said Miller.

Landscaping - Reid Price, The Woods Landscaping

He has worked for Widseth Smith and Nolting in Baxter, Minn., and RemWhirl in Crosslake, Minn.,

For more information, contact:

where he ran the architecture department until

TWM Architecture

starting his own firm, TWM Architecture in 2011.

Travis Miller 11443 Co. Road 77 S.W., Nisswa, Minn. 218.821.6780



Minnesota Beach Makeover Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by Angela Dirkes-Ridl - Foto Art & Design

We love when folks bring us golden oak overhauls, especially when they’re located at the lake. For this project, the Accent Contracting team hit the road for Loon Lake near Vergas, Minnesota. Their team worked with homeowners, Gretchen and Virgil Hoffman, to do away with their outdated oak, transform the garage into an entryway, extend the kitchen and remodel two bathrooms. See inside the Hoffman’s revamped summer getaway where the rustic woods of Minnesota meet California beaches.



Tim Liebl, Kitchen & Bath Specialist - Accent Contracting

MEET THE TEAM To find out more about their project, we met up with Tim Liebl of Accent Contracting to get the low-down on the upgrade. “When Gretchen came into the Accent showroom, she was in the information-gathering





possible to do with her lake home,” said Liebl. “We let her know about how we go out to the house to try and troubleshoot and rough design and rough quote on the spot. After a short period of


time, I could tell immediately that Gretchen and

After discussing styles with Liebl, the Hoffmans

Virgil were warm and welcoming, but full of life

decided on a unique mix of rustic Minnesota and

and energy. This was something that I wanted to

light, beachy tones for their remodel. “We wanted

incorporate into the design and plan.”

a house that reflected our love for the lake and it had to be open and airy - but not kitschy,” said

“Our kitchen needed an update badly,” said

Hoffman. “We want guests to get that ‘ahh’ feeling

Gretchen Hoffman. “Initially we were just going

when they come in. A place to relax and enjoy the

to replace cupboards and add a better island.

outdoors, as well as the inside.”

Accent was suggested by our daughter-in-law as she had heard their work was excellent. Tim came out and asked what our ultimate dream for the kitchen and house was. We told him what we had always wanted to do, after living in it for 25 years and wanting to make it our summer place. After meeting with Tim, we liked Accent’s ideas, excitement and personal approach to the project.”

If you’ve never heard of a “Minnesota Beach” theme, don’t worry, Liebl explained it like this; “When I think of the beach, I think soft greys, browns mixed with worn painted accent features, accented with blue wall paints. However, looking at their house mixed with their personalities and goals, I felt strongly that we should try to fuse a beach theme with a bit of rustic Minnesota style,” said Liebl. “The main premise of this theme is to give a warm and welcoming, rustic feel while keeping the energy levels high and the tones light and beachy. Throughout the entire process, the Hoffmans were a pleasure to work with.”



NON-NEGOTIABLES For this project, the Hoffmans had a manageable list of must-haves, simply asking for a prep kitchen with two ovens and expanded storage.

FROM-SCRATCH IDEAS The Hoffmans cook mainly from scratch and have a constant stream of visiting family and friends, so Accent’s challenge was to figure out a plan to utilize the entire space. One month into the project, the Hoffmans left their lake home for the winter, returning in the spring to a new and refreshed lake home.

KITCHEN CREATIVITY In the kitchen, Accent took a calculated, but rewarding risk and mixed a natural hickory with a black glaze for the main cabinets. “This was a leap of faith for Gretchen and myself, because I had never seen it or worked with it before and Gretchen had to go on blind faith that the color would work,” said Liebl. “The island was Norcraft’s Portobello paint. We implemented




from Cambria, and accented it with a ‘3 stage’ backsplash. The backsplash was key to separating the three zones that she wanted distinguished.”

In the butler’s pantry zone, Accent did all splitface stone. In the kitchen zone, they incorporated a ‘Rustic Italian Stacker’ design mixing stacked stone and mosaic. “In the beverage center, we did one hundred percent mosaic,” said Liebl. “I also utilized the double oven to split up the butler’s pantry zone and main kitchen area.”

“There was just one more part that we needed to complete the look; since we took out the walls and opened up the windows, the space was very open, so we took that as an opportunity to frame down a custom wood soffit that housed the custom range hood above the island,” said Liebl.



“After that, I loaded up the cabinets with tons

“We love how open the house is and how easy

of storage features with functionality for the

it is for six people to be in the kitchen cooking

Hoffmans in mind.”

and we aren’t tripping over each other,” said Hoffman. “Everything is beautiful and functional - it definitely exceeded our expectations and I wouldn’t have done anything differently. Accent

BATHROOM BLISS The final phase of the project included renovations to the Hoffman’s two bathrooms. The original bathroom provided some unique challenges with an unusual shape, five-foot fiberglass tub shower and an oddly-designed vanity area.

added things in the design that we hadn’t even thought of and we love all of it.”


remodel “The goal was to try and open up the bathroom site-lines maxing out the shower,” said Liebl. “So we implemented the hip wall systems. I personally like to do this, because we put the valve to turn on the water in that wall so the Hoffmans don’t have to walk into the shower to turn it on. It also creates identifiable zones between shower and toilet with a barrier between the shower and vanity cabinets. With that in mind, we shrunk down the vanity zone by about 18-inches.” This kind of savvy thinking allowed the Hoffman’s to have a 6-foot shower.

Find the Finishes: Flooring - Karndean - Country Oak, Luxury vinyl plank Main cabinets - Norcraft Hickory, Natural stain, Black glaze Island cabinets - Norcraft Maple, Portobello stain Kitchen countertops - Cambria Beaumont Kitchen backsplash - Travertine in various textures and colors with Glazzio mosaics Bathroom countertops - Cambria Harlech Tiled shower - Ragno Rewind Corda with Glazzio accents, beige onyx, sliced pebble floor Faucets and fixtures - Brizo / Kitchen - Touch 2 o Articulating faucets Sinks in kitchen and bath - Kohler products Feature wood above the island - Grain Designs Mirror in bathroom - Fleurco Luna series Shower glass - Frontier Glass Fridge - Sub Zero

For more information, contact: Accent Contracting (A division of Accent Kitchen & Bath) Tim Liebl 3151 Main Avenue, Fargo 701.293.6000




Restoring Home Words by Tracy Nicholson Photography by Dan Francis Photography

Mosaic Design + Build is not your typical remodeling contractor. Owners Melanie and James Iverson were recently remarried and know a thing or two about rebuilding broken pieces to redefine a space, or their own life...hence the name “Mosaic�. With Melanie as the interior designer and James as the project manager, we were thrilled to go on a journey with them as they gave us a tour of three recent remodels, with the last one giving us a glimpse of their own fixer-upper. Together, this dynamic duo is perfecting the art of restoring home.



#1. Boho Minimalist Makeover When Krysta and Matt Bye were ready to downsize and take on a fixer-upper, the couple contacted Mosaic Design + Build to transform their 1928 character home in North Moorhead. With only a couple of months of pre-planning and one week to do the actual remodel, Melanie and James Iverson hit the gas, working day and night to complete the home, just in time for their closing day. See inside the Boho minimalist makeover that gave new life to this home’s good bones. result would allow them a home they loved, and a life they could live to the fullest. Although the Byes were initially considering buying a more extensive fixer-upper, they came across this home and felt it was a gem they couldn’t pass up. “James and I walked through the home with them before they bought it, then we put a bid together so they would know ahead of time how much to budget for the project.”

IN THE DETAILS Even though it’s an older character home, this gem has all of the updates one would need, including

Fortunately for the Byes, one of the couples

Smarthome features. “There’s really nothing big

that had previously lived in the home had been


that they had to do to the home, mainly just

a professional millworker. He was the one that

The Byes had most recently lived in a home that

cosmetic updates,” said Melanie Iverson. “One of

designed all of the stunning beams, existing

had far more square footage than their smaller

the unique things about working with a smaller

floating shelves and coffered ceilings. The following

family of four required. Their ultimate goal became

home is there is very little wasted space. Here,

owners had painted the entire main level a dark

to downsize and take on a fun remodel. They

every inch of this house is functional or at least

chocolate brown and red with navy blue upstairs,

decided that if they downsized strategically, the

aesthetically pleasing.”

leaving the home feeling very dark throughout.

Matt Bye, Krysta Bye, Melanie Iverson



Melanie Iverson, Mosaic Design + Build

THE REMODEL Since the home was never actually listed because the past and current owners knew each other, Mosaic was able to get in last week, and about one week prior to the closing. “One of the first things that we did is to repaint every inch of the home,” said Melanie Iverson.

“On the main level, we used a light grey (Heron Plume), which looks great with the white subway tile and truffle-toned grout we installed in the kitchen. We kept the existing ceiling millwork, cabinetry and countertops. We replaced the lights throughout and have completed the upstairs remodel, except for decor. We basically spent an entire week just updating the finishes so that the

Mosaic knew this project was going to have to

new owners could move in last night - they’re

work on a tight schedule, so Melanie and James

closing on the home is today.”

had every inch mapped out with idea boards and knew exactly how they wanted to piece it together. “For the furnishings, Krysta and I had gone shopping quite a while ago and picked out all of the furniture, lighting and samples - we had been going back and forth since the beginning of May,” said Melanie Iverson. “We bought some things together, checking out pieces online and worked together on the placement of the furniture. They’re amazing clients and it’s been a really fun project to do.”





“We call this style Boho Minimalism, just because

This month’s issue shows the Bye’s home after a

it’s not the traditional Bohemian style, which tends

couple of months of pre-planning and one week’s

to be a lot busier,” said Melanie Iverson. “We have

worth of work, almost solely on the main level.

the dark, warm tones of the existing millwork, bold

What is not shown, is the upstairs remodel which

pops of rich color and texture, with some larger

consisted of replacing the stairwell and upstairs

patterns mixed in. Krysta was really fun to work

flooring, and updating the master bedroom, office

with because she was excited to take risks. A lot

and bathroom. After Mosaic completes the upstairs

of homeowners I’ve worked with in the past get

decor, Krysta’s office, just off of the master, will be

really worried about colors and prints, but she was

transformed into her creative suite, helping her to

really bold and brave, so it was fun getting to work

work from home as a musician and entrepreneur.

with her. When we spotted the teal linen recliner chairs, we both looked at each other and thought...


we need to get these chairs. The sofa is a soft-


blend grey linen which looks amazing with the fun

“This process was awesome, it went so smoothly

checkered and magenta pillows from The White

and Melanie and James made it really easy. We

House Co.”

had fun collaborating on design ideas and I’m thrilled with how the space turned out and the vision they brought to life. I had a concept in mind and a feel that I wanted - Melanie took that and ran with it, creating a kind of Mid-century modern, Bohemian feel,” said Krysta Bye. “The bones of the space were really great, so it was fun to be able to come in and transform it.”House Co.”

Find the Finishes: Paint color - Heron Plume, Sherwin Williams Furnishings - Slumberland, HomeGoods Checkered and magenta pillows - The White House Co. Pink pillows - HomeGoods

“For the tablescape, I found all of the decor at The

Live-edge slab mantle - Dakota Timber Company

White House Co., then placed a captain’s chair at

Boho rugs - Amazon

the end that would not obstruct the pathway,” said

Live-edge side tables and dining set - Slumberland

Melanie Iverson. “Eventually, we will have a bench

TV cabinet - Ikea

on the kitchen side of the table, so that will help

Stairwell carpet - Carpet Garage

to open up the pathway even more.”

Triangle wall art - Hobby Lobby



Melanie Iverson, Mosaic Design + Build

#2. Rose Creek Remodel As the senior pastor and co-founder of Burning Hearts Church, Jana Sawchuk’s home

UPSTAIRS BATH To complete the upstairs bath, Mosaic completely

is meant to be a sanctuary, but there was nothing soothing about the honey oak that

gutted the space down to the studs. To achieve

seemed to be everywhere in her home. Built in 1996, Jana and her husband, Dr. Ted

more efficient use of the space, they swapped the

Sawchuk were ready to either love it or list it - but either way, they knew it was time to remodel. To manage two bathroom remodels and a fireplace refacing, the couple

single, lower vanity for double sinks and designed a new walk-in shower with a unique swiveling glass door. Honey oak was replaced with crisp,

worked with Mosaic Design + Build to complete all three projects in less than one

white subway tile and the clean lines of shiplap.


Outdated fixtures made way for articulating sconces, brushed nickel fixtures, marble counters and square sinks.


you might see in a rental unit, just very basic

Although the couple has three grown kids, they

fixtures and cabinets,” explained Melanie Iverson

are still in the stage of sporadically coming and

of Mosaic Design + Build. Overwhelmed by their

going. In fact, all three had planned on being home

outdated finishes, the Sawchuks had considered

for the summer, so it was a major goal to have

selling as a solution. “I realized that If we wanted

the bathrooms completed before the start of the

to sell our house, we’d have to update it,” said Jana

summer. Since they had two other bathrooms

Sawchuk. “So, we decided to follow through with

to use, Mosaic worked on both remodels at the

the updates, but live in it updated, rather than sell

same time. They also asked Mosaic to take on a


resurfacing project with their fireplace surround in the great room.

COASTAL VIBES For style inspiration, Mosaic relied on Jana Sawchuk’s love of travel and the beach. She had once lived in Hawaii and many of their family vacations were centered around surfing. Finding a way to diffuse the honey oak and infuse a bright coastal vibe would become their end-goal.


“Their old bathrooms kind of looked like something



“Jana really wanted a floating shelf, so we used a piece of reclaimed wood, running it from one end to the other for display. We used a 3x6, extra-wide subway tile with extra white grout - we didn’t want to see the grout at all, just to give it that really clean look,” said Melanie Iverson. “We also added some outlets to bring it up to code, so if the family ever decides to sell, they’re not going to have any issues.”

“I knew I really wanted the shiplap and definitely a half shower door - I don’t like shower curtains and I don’t like full doors, I think they’re dysfunctional,” explained Jana Sawchuk. To properly install the swivel door, the team had to adjust the plumbing moving it to the other side where it made more sense. According to Iverson, there were about 110 different options for the swiveling door, but this is the one their plumber recommended as one of the sturdiest and safest options. Beyond the swiveling glass door, Melanie Iverson designed a marble hexagon mosaic pattern which was added to the niche in the shower wall. Unable to make this bathroom larger due to the layout, Mosaic laid the flooring in a more strategic way to make the room appear larger, without adding square feet. “Knowing that we’d have to re-sheetrock and texture, we covered all of the stairs and flooring with plastic. We just did a lot of additional cleaning so


that they could maintain their normal lifestyle.”



LOWER LEVEL BATH In the lower level bath, Mosaic opted to keep the tub surround but replaced the flooring with a more grey-toned luxury laminate. Melanie Iverson worked closely with the Jana Sawchuk to choose the finishes, consisting of a new black oak vanity

Before / After

with marble top, antiqued gold lighting and reclaimed wood towel hooks. “I really liked Jana’s style that brings in that light, airy beach vibe, and there’s also a lot of personality in this design,” said Melanie Iverson. “It’s been really fun working with her and bouncing ideas off of each other.”

Before / After

FIREPLACE REFACE For the final phase of this remodel, Mosaic took on the forest green marble of the fireplace surround in the great room. This would be a less extensive project that would mean painting the gold detailing black and replacing the green facade with a crisp, white marble.

they wanted it, not what I wanted. I knew that Melanie really understood what I wanted. That reclaimed wood shelf and some of the other things that I asked for, were not easy tasks, but they were willing to work with it. On the contractor side, James was great managing all of the other subcontractors and they got it done very quickly. We have more projects to do, so we plan to work with them again.”


scheduling and really, take care of everything -

“We completed all three projects in under a month.

then communicate it to the client. We have a lot

Find the Finishes:

I think there is real value in working with a design/

of strong relationships within the trades, so that

Wall paint - Reflection, Sherwin Williams

build,” said Melanie Iverson. “We can move swiftly

really helps us to get the job done well.”

Lower Vanity - Joss & Main

through the project because there’s only one point

Upper Vanity - Wayfair

of contact. It’s an aspect that really saved them


Laminate flooring - Carpet Garage, Dilworth

money and time.”


Articulating sconces -

“James and Melanie were great to work with and

Glass shower door - Custom Design Plumbing, LLC

“With Mosaic, I have a mentality that I want to

very creative

Subway tile - Menards

do as much for the client as we can, with the

right away, and I’m not your normal North Dakotan,”

Mosaic Tile (Bathroom Niche) - Syverson Tile & Stone

least amount of stress,” said James Iverson. “So,

laughed Jana Sawchuk. “I’ve worked with other

Reclaimed wood shelving - Tornell Construction

we deal with the contractors, we handle the

designers, and the house ended up looking how

Fireplace marble - Home Depot

- they understood what I wanted



#3. At Home with Mosaic Design + Build Last, but certainly not least, Mosaic Design + Build gave us a glimpse inside their own fixer-upper. After recently getting remarried, James and Melanie decided to embark on a fresh start with a new home. One month after their closing date, we visited the couple to take a quick tour at the start of their project, and their personal mission of restoring home.

FUSING STYLES “I personally love more of a Bohemian, eclectic style, mixed with some Mid-century modern. I really enjoy mixing patterns that you wouldn’t typically see together,” explained Melanie Iverson. “I think it feels fresh and different. A lot of people think they could never do that in their own home, but with the right ensemble, it can be beautiful.” “Most of the time, in each room, I find something that I hate so much that I think I will love it -


something that really pushes my own boundaries.

“The day after we closed, James started demolition

“On the fireplace, I decided to white-wash the

That happens to be that zebra chair. It’s so ugly, I

on the lower-level den, so that’s where we began

brick because it was old and almost too yellow

just love it,” laughed Melanie Iverson. “I also did

our renovation. It had that old, 70s-style paneling

for me. I picked up the live edge mantelpiece

some jewel-tones in here with a goal for it to

and James gutted it entirely off of the walls and

at Dakota Timber Company. This is part of their

feel somewhat coastal. A lot of the clay pots and

fireplace,” said Melanie Iverson. “He installed the

Urban Reclaimed collection that is sourced from

baskets around the room are from my mother-

sheetrock, did the tape, texture and mudding,

boulevard trees taken down by the City of Fargo,”

in-law - she was downsizing, so I inherited those

ripped out the old carpet and installed the new

explained Melanie Iverson.

things. She just had some really interesting pieces,

flooring. I took on the painting and design finishes.”

including the two art pieces behind the lamp.”



“For the artwork above the mantel, I found the painting of the woman for a dollar at a rummage sale and wasn’t even sure if I liked it, but it works really well in this space. The floral painting over the sofa is also a rummage sale find, and the brightly colored face painting in the corner was going to be thrown away, so I snagged it. I just like to surround myself with really interesting pieces,” said Melanie Iverson. “The coffee table was first made by Grain Designs in a grey-toned wood, but for this room, I needed it to be lighter, so I painted over it with white.”

PHASE 2: THE SPA ROOM Just beyond the kitchen, the Iverson’s new house has a gorgeous spa room with fun architectural details in pine and brick. Before their cosmetic makeover, this room was mint green with all walls finished in pine. To brighten up the space, they opted to paint the shared wall white for a more modern approach. “With a house like this, there were a lot of things that needed to be fixed or worked on. For us, it’s a perfect house because everything does need to be redone,” said Melanie Iverson.

MARRIAGE + MOSAIC James and Melanie were remarried in September last year, and they knew that this next season of their lives with their children, was really important. This time, they would invest wisely in their family and their time. “In November, when we started dreaming about what our new lives would look like, we attended a conference and this woman that heard our story had said, ‘Your lives are interesting, it seems like, through your first marriage and divorce, everything shattered. It seems that God is placing you back together and making a really beautiful mosaic of what was once broken.’ That really spoke to both of us,” said Melanie Iverson.

LAUNCHING A NEW LIFE “While we were processing what to do, the idea of starting this company, really came to us. In January, James decided to quit his job and we would launch Mosaic Design + Build. When I met James, he was a commercial paint contractor and when we were married, he had worked for over 12 years as the building and grounds manager for a local company, managing the remodel of their commercial space. After that was completed, James gained valuable experience working






contractors, often doing remodel projects for family members. So, these days, I help create the space and he does all of the heavy work,” laughed Melanie Iverson. “In our old house, when we were first married, she had created the vision. We started that project

married, then we got divorced. I finished her vision in order to be able to sell it. When you look back on it, it’s actually kind of cool because, even with all that was going on at that time, I still kept her design going in that house, which I think is really kind of significant with where we ended up with Mosaic,” said James Iverson. “I really enjoy working on our home, it’s almost therapeutic in a sense,” said James Iverson. “Why not do one more thing that we can work together on? We actually do work pretty well together - we have a lot more fun, then we have trying times.”

NEW VS. OLD Just as in their own life, Mosaic Design + Build has a mission to collaborate with homeowners so that their vision comes to life. “It’s more than just remodeling, it’s restoring home. So many people feel like they have to build new to get what they want. I love new builds, but I think something that is at the core of what I believe, as far as what we do, is that you can absolutely love what you have,” said Melanie Iverson. “Sometimes it just takes a fresh coat of paint or a second set of eyes to be content and happy with some of these older homes. Once you give them a little bit of an update, the result can be beautiful.”

IN THE WORKS What’s next on their agenda? The Iversons plan to repaint the entire main level and knock the wall out between the kitchen and family room, upgrading the floor plan to a more open concept with a shiplap ceiling. They will be refacing the kitchen cabinets, installing new tile, reclaimed wood shelving, and building an 8x4 butcher block island with drop pendants. Find the Finishes: Sofa - West Elm Downstairs side tables - thrift stores Coffee table - Grain Designs Floral pillows & chair - The White House Co. Downstairs rug - Dakota Boys Ranch Pillows, fiddle figs and snake plants - The White House Co.

For more information, contact: Mosaic Design + Build P.O. Box 455, Fargo 701.306.9995



shoppes at BLU


Fargo’s Newest Shopping Destination!




Photo courtesy of Brit Worgan

#RedBallProject Countdown to Fargo-Moorhead’s Most Anticipated Public Art Debut

Words by Tracy Nicholson Portrait Photography by Dan Francis Photography RedBall photography courtesy of Brit Worgan, Tom Martin, Kurt Perschke

We may travel through our community every single day, but do we really see it? When clay artist and MSUM Art Professor, Brad Bachmeier, spotted the RedBall Project online, he immediately took note of the way each community uniquely interacted with its arrival. This massive, inflatable ball, the creation of artist Kurt Perschke, had been crammed in between high-rises, suspended over bridges, and expertly placed in parks and pathways. This was public art that placed a giant red dot on one week’s worth of locations, that begged for another glance. To get the project to Fargo-Moorhead would require a collaboration between the cities, MSUM, Plains Art Museum and a lengthy list of local supporters and sponsors. Before the ball bounces our way, Perschke made an early trip to scout out locations for its October 4th arrival. Where will the ball be? Just keep your eyes peeled, you can’t miss it.



Photo courtesy of Brit Worgan

From left; Brad Bachmeier of MSUM, RedBall artist Kurt Perschke, Andy Maus of Plains Art Museum

“It truly is a community project,” said Maus. “We have a history of public art projects here at the museum. We’ve worked with MSUM in a variety of ways over the years and they’re a great partner for a lot of projects, so this seemed like a natural fit. I’m really excited about the project because I think it tests some limits in a friendly way about what public art can be - I think that’s an important

Photo courtesy of Brit Worgan

dialogue for Fargo and Moorhead right now.”

PERSEVERING PUBLIC ART Nearly 18-years-ago, sculptor Kurt Perschke was

would spend a month on the phone before finding

searching for a way to expand his horizons on a

anyone who would understand his mission and be

much larger and interactive scale. After drawing

able to fabricate his 250-pound, inflatable canvas

up a plan, Perschke found exactly what he was

art. For Perschke, the public needed to be able to

looking for in a giant red ball, roughly the height

touch it, and it had to be able to survive being

of a semi-truck. It would have to be inflatable, but

wedged up against rough building facades.

durable enough to withstand the elements. He



Photo courtesy of Brit Worgan

Photo courtesy of Kurt Perschke

Photo courtesy of Brit Worgan

Photo courtesy of Tom Martin

Photo courtesy of Brit Worgan

Photo courtesy of Tom Martin



This would be a massive, public art install that would intrigue and inspire cities all over the world. After a successful, inaugural run in St. Louis in 2001, Perschke would end up on a journey that would take him around the world to cities like Paris, Bethlehem, Calgary... and now FargoMoorhead. To date, the RedBall Project has made its debut in over 30 international cities, moving to a new site each day. It is currently considered “the world’s longest-running street artwork”.

Photo courtesy of Brit Worgan

To get the RedBall Project to Fargo, Bachmeier and Andy Maus, CEO and Director of Plains Art Museum, would be tasked with figuring out the finite details and gathering the supporters. “The beauty of this whole project was that it allowed an opportunity for a ton of collaboration within our community,” said Bachmeier. “There are quite a few large groups of people that will be working together to pull the whole thing off. I’m really excited to get this here, in our own community. I think it will open eyes and a piece like this will bring joy - it’s hard not to smile when you look at it.” Photo courtesy of Kurt Perschke

“It’s temporary, it’s fun and it’s whimsical - it just seemed like the perfect project, at the right time to introduce Fargo-Moorhead to public art,” said Bachmeier. To get the ball rolling, he knew the ideal partner would be Plains Art Museum.

ONE WEEK ONLY “The reason the project happens over the course of a week and not just one day, is that you actually need those different flavors as you go,” explained Perschke. “For me, there’s not one site that is everything the project is because it really needs that whole run - that way it’s theatrical. It needs to be able to move through several acts, through different days, different weather and a different audience - that’s going to create an experience that you might not get out of just one location. I just Photo courtesy of Brit Worgan

want people to come out and take the adventure with us - it’s only a week, and it will happen fast.”



FROM PARIS TO FARGO Interested to find out more, we asked Perschke to explain how Fargo’s visit would compare to its prior international locales. “The project actually operates really well in small communities. While it’s been to a lot of major cities, the density of a smaller city, in terms of word of mouth, and in terms of how the project functions, works very well - it’s very much an audience piece,” explained Perschke. “When Brad called, I was really interested and it was immediately clear that there would be sites here that would be fun to work with.”

SCOUTING LOCATIONS To find the perfect sites, announced this fall, Photo courtesy of Kurt Perschke

Perschke spent an entire week in Fargo to physically see and discuss all possible locations. “The project will always operate between well-known locations and maybe some that are surprises, but the main thing for me is thinking about how to build an audience and how to take them on a trip,” said Perschke. “The idea is for you to see something that you might drive by or walk near every day, but have never really noticed. Part of the theatricality of the work is that it can go anywhere and explore and play with the landscape of a city.”

Photo courtesy of Kurt Perschke

As Perschke explained, when he makes a site visit,

creates a conversation which is vital for a healthy

he turns to his sculptural senses to help navigate


each location. “I’m thinking about the physical

“Part of the theatricality of the work is that it can go anywhere and explore and play with the landscape of a city.” Artist, Kurt Perschke, RedBall Project

opportunities there, the negative space, the

For Perschke, the hands-on interaction is why

sculptural aspects of the piece - that’s my internal

it’s considered public art. In public art, people

point that I begin with. Then, in the studio, there

are encouraged to experience it for themselves

will be drawings and collages that come out of the

and interact with it in varying ways. He’s acutely

site visits.”

interested to see if the ball’s placement creates awe, whimsy, disbelief or even occasionally, total


disregard. “For me, the surprising reaction is the

One of the things that Perschke expects will

person who doesn’t engage - the person that

happen is that audiences will build up and

walks by, even though the invitation is there,” said

people will organically begin to interact with the

Perschke. “I think it’s really easy if you’re going from

ball. Some people will find inspiration, some will

point to point in a city to sort of not have your eyes

question it, and for others - they’ll imagine where

open. There’s always someone that will come by

else it could be. Whether it piques an interest,

and they see the play of it, but they don’t internally

sparks an idea or simply provokes a RedBall selfie,

feel permission to engage. How audiences engage

Perschke and many others believe that public art

with it is a really fascinating part of the project.”



MARK YOUR CALENDARS! When the RedBall project arrives on October 4th, for one week only - get ready to map out its locations and engage your senses. This is a public art experience that is requesting your presence. Sites will be announced closer to its arrival.

Organizing Partners - Plains Art Museum - Minnesota State University Moorhead

Lead Sponsors - Fargo Arts & Culture Commission - Minnesota State University Moorhead

Sponsors Photo courtesy of Brit Worgan

- Insight to Action / Carol Schlossman Consulting - Fargo-Moorhead-West Fargo Convention & Visitors Bureau - Fargo Parks District - Plains Art Museum

Additional In-Kind Supporters - Fargo Moorhead Visual Artists - City of Moorhead - The Arts Partnership For more information, contact: Plains Art Museum Andrew J. Maus, Director and CEO 701.551.6123

MSUM Bradley Bachmeier MFA, Professor - School of Art 218.477.5989 Photo courtesy of Brit Worgan



“For me, it’s about seeing the city and using the

Kurt Perschke is a Chicago native, past art

project - the charisma of it, the humor of it, as a

educator, and artist who works in sculpture, video,

way to take people on a pathway. But, I also think

collage and public space. His most acclaimed

that if someone hears about the piece and says to

work, RedBall Project, received a National Award

themselves, I don’t get it - they just need to see it

from Americans for the Arts Public Art Network.

Find RedBall Project on Facebook and

for themselves and experience it,” said Perschke.

Perschke has a Master of Fine Arts from RIT in

Instagram. Be sure to use the hashtag

“It’s not unlike anything else with performing arts

Upstate New York, where he resided for the past 15

#RedBallProject when posting any

or visual arts, you need to be there as an audience

years before recently relocating to North Carolina.

social media images or tweeting via

member and participate to really understand what it is - so for me, that’s the invitation. I think if people accept that invitation at least to come out for one day, then they will understand it.”

Twitter. You may even have your images featured on the RedBall Project website!


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