Halloween Done Sustainably

Halloween is a blast. It’s one of my favorite holidays. It’s full of traditions and symbols that are a deep part of American culture. If you were born after 1950, you know what the Great Pumpkin is. If you were born after 1960, you know who Mike Myers is. If you were born after 1980, you probably remember the Great Halloween Blizzard. But, most recently, we have been blessed to find our latest Halloween symbol: Macklemore.

That’s right. The funky rapper/artist/fashion trendsetter/deal hunter from Washington has set millions of people across the world on the new traditions for Halloween.

Actually, that’s wrong, but I’ll be using Macklemore as a mascot anyway. So come with me as we can find new ways to make Halloween more sustainable than ever.

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Nature Notes: Fall Foliage

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Fall has unofficially arrived and with it has come cool evenings, dewy mornings, jeans and sweatshirts, fall harvests, pumpkin spice everything, and yes, the first leaves to change color! This month is known as Waatebagaa-giizis to the Fond du Lac Ojibwe, a name that literally means “Leaves Changing Color Moon”. The brilliant colors of autumn are one of the most beloved phenomena of the season, but do you know why the trees change colors?

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SPROUT. Not Your Ordinary Market

With over 75,000 farms in the state, Minnesota is the 5th largest food creator in the nation. Yet, in 1978 there were over 100,000 farms in Minnesota and the number is continuing to shrink.

The decline can be attributed to larger farms (over 100,000 acres) taking over for the family run-farms or many current farmers are simply retiring out with fewer people choosing to go along the same profession. But, for those that have picked up the mantle of farmer, they have changed the way local produce is bought.

Let’s take a look at Arlene Jones. Purchasing a farm in Brainerd in 2005, Jones didn’t want to simply be a production farm. She also didn’t want to utilize conventional farming procedures. She discovered that reaching to her community, she was able to create a vibrant food production location.

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Jone at her St. Mathias farm location. Photo courtesy of Brian Peterson – Star Tribune

She became aware that despite her success, there were many other producers that were struggling to reach new customers. These were smaller farms, farms that were much less than the 100,000 acre production farms that are currently seen as “the norm.”

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