Minnesota has a wide heritage that is as eclectic as it is unique. For those of you that have grown up in rural Minnesota, you understand that the summertime is a time to work hard and make hay while the sun shines.
We’ve got to cram all our summer fun in three months, so there is significant overlap on weekends, but there is definitely no shortage of things to do during the warm months.
We love to celebrate our heritage with festivals and get-togethers that range from New Ulm’s Oktoberfest to American Indian powwows.
Let’s be honest, garlic’s a pretty weak reason to host a festival, but Hutchinson holds it’s event with gusto, and it’s only getting bigger!
However, there’s really no good list of how many events Minnesota hosts. There’s not a “definitive” list, but some range them between 600 and 1,500 block parties, powwows, concerts, annual town get-togethers, historical reenactments, and not to mention the the larger events like the State Fair, the Renaissance Festival, and We Fest (the largest camping & country concert in the US).
And it’s not only for the lutefisk and mashed potatoes that people put these things together. There’s big money to be made! According to an article by Andy Greder and Ann Harrington, a significant portion of the $10 billion spent by travelers in Minnesota are dedicated to attending the myriad festivals across the state.
You see, Minnesotans love a good get together! There hardly needs to be a reason. However, here are a few of the festivals that might prove to be worth the visit:
Agate Days – Moose Lake – July 13-14
Festival of the Voyageur – Pine City – September 21-22
MN Garlic Festival – Hutchinson – August 10
Potato Days- Barnesville – August 23-24
Bean-Hole Days – Pequot Lakes – July 16-17
King Turkey Days – Worthington – Sept 13-14
Corn Capital Days – Olivia – July 22-28
Dam Festival – Little Falls – June 14-15
Summerfest – Pine River – July 24-28
You’ve been riding your trusty rusty two-wheeler for a month or so now, and you’re looking at your garage thinking, “maybe it’s time to bring out the ‘good’ bike”. But, how do you make sure your good bike is ready for summer riding? Here’s a few quick tasks that’ll make sure your jewel is trail-worthy.
Clean Up Your Bike:
A clean bike extends the life of all the other components, just like a clean car lasts longer. Use a basic biodegradable cleaner like “Simple Green” and take a towel and toothbrush to clean everything from handlebars to back tires. Make sure to use as little water as possible to help avoid rusting. Also, don’t forget to get under the seat!
People who have chosen to work in the farming and ranching communities have a persona of being solitary, private folk. Stoic would be an appropriate definition, working from the wee early hours until sundown, with tradition and pure grit their only tools.
However, several independent developments are culminating together to create a perfect storm making life increasingly more difficult for farmers.
The median age of the US farmer is now 55, with fewer people willing to take on family run ranches or agricultural businesses. This forces growers to continue to run their productions longer until they are forced to sell family land, or maybe the operation entirely.
Additionally, prices for commodities are fewer than they’ve been in years, adding to the stress many farmers face. Milk prices are far below the cost of production. Dairy farmers are getting around $15 per hundred pounds of milk, but “hundredweight” cost approximately $22-$25 to produce. This negative cashflow is so abundant that dairy cooperative Agri-Mark recently sent out suicide hotline numbers along with the milk checks out of concern for the safety of it’s producers.
In this episode we talk about the growing “faux” meat market and what it could mean for climate change and agricultural practices being used in the US.
It’s 3:30 in the afternoon and you’re getting a bit antsy. Nothing’s going right and you’ve still got a few hours of work before you can head home. You may snip at a co-worker and they’ll notice that you’re getting a little “hangry,” the perfect storm where your mental state is dictated by low blood sugar.
We’ve all been there. It’s nothing a little snack and a walk around the office can’t fix. Just eat this candy bar and you’ll be fine.
That isn’t what I’m talking about.
Some people say, “Don’t talk to me until I’ve had my coffee! I need my caffeine.”
That, also, isn’t what I’m talking about.
I’m talking about a direct correlation between mental illness and diet. I wanted to explore research that may have real implications about mental health, namely the long term effects that nutrients have on mental illness.
This year’s Earth Day falls on a Monday (this April 22, to be specific). Taking the time off to properly celebrate our communal home may be difficult because of that. However, with the Easter weekend taking place directly before Earth Day, finding the time may be easier. In fact, many of the events celebrating Earth Day will be held during this upcoming weekend.
So, if you’re out of ideas for things to do for Earth Day, here are a few highlights to give you a head start.
- Monday, April 22. Brainerd Public Library 4pm-5pm – We’ll start off with an event close to our hearts. Our very own Michelle H. will be at the Brainerd Public Library to talk about the Earth’s most valuable resource: water.
- Monday, April 22. Leech Lake Earth Day ’19 Noon-4pm – At the Boys & Girls Club of Leech Lake, the US Forestry Service, RREAL, Leech Lake Tribal Historic Preservation Office, Solid Waste, Leech Lake Fish & Wildlife and many more will be hosting a fun event geared towards encouraging everyone to “Get Outside!”
- Friday, April 19-Saturday April 20. Run Earth Day Running Events – All Weekend – If you’re down by St. Cloud this weekend and are looking to enjoy the great outdoors AND like to run, take part in the Run Earth Day event. With a variety of races and expos, you’ll be able to find something to enjoy.
We continue our discussion with local foraging enthusiast, Travis Grimler.
In this episode we talk about the legality of foraging, Travis shares some of his favorite recipes, and we share some good references to turn to if you’re interested in getting started in foraging.
A few weeks ago, we were able to sit down with local news reporter Travis Grimler, who is fanatical for foraging! We chatted with Travis for over 90 minutes and picked up so much good information, we were able to split the recording into two episodes. This is the first part.
Travis brought a bunch of foraging books and examples to the recording.
In this episode, we talk about proper foraging safety, nutrients vs calories, and even The Walking Dead.
In 1969, Americans were preoccupied with the divisive Vietnam War. But another battle was occurring on the home front, with rivers and lakes polluted, cities like Los Angeles blanketed in smog, and litter a common sight everywhere.
US Senator Gaylord Nelson was instrumental in the creation of Earth Day.
Meanwhile Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson had witnessed the effects of the 1969 oil spill in Santa Barbara, California. Nelson, a Democrat, decided a “national teach-in” about the environment was in order, and he asked Pete McCloskey, a northern California Republican, to serve as co-chair. Groups representing causes including oil spill prevention, air pollution, toxic dumps, wilderness destruction and endangered species began to realize they were all part of a greater movement.
We are very fortunate at Happy Dancing Turtle to have leaders who aren’t afraid of getting their hands dirty. In this episode, we were able to sit down with our very own Principal Executive Officer, Bob McLean, who is also the District Governor Elect for Rotary District 5580.
The Bob and Colin Show. We’ll see how long it takes to get into syndication.
We were able to talk about the looming problem of water scarcity, which is troubling many parts of the world, but we also talked about the many people and service organizations that are working very hard to help solve that problem.
We also talk about how you can act locally to help these water stressed areas.