Issue #405 March 4, 2020

Winter Layers

peeling back the accumulation of winter reveals the earth – and ourselves

Katie Venit

In 1996, I was 16 and living in Bethesda, Maryland (January mean temperature: 37 degrees). One ordinary brown January afternoon, my siblings and I went to see 12 Monkeys. While we sat in the dark theater ....

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Issue #397 Nov. 13, 2019

The Play’s the Thing

discovering a new world of fun with the family by stepping onto the stage

by Reid Sollberger

I admit, I was playing the long game. In the summer of 2015, I took my family to see the Chippewa Valley Theatre Guild’s production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. It was always a ...

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Issue #396 Oct. 30, 2019

We Are Grasshoppers

frittering away autumn days as the Wisconsin winter closes in

Katie Venit, design by Serena Wagner

This morning, the kitchen thermostat reads 59 degrees. It’s still dark outside, so I can’t confirm the forecasted snow and wind. Either way ...

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Issue #378 February 20, 2019

Finding Your Tribe

opportunities abound in the close-knit local writing community

Katie Venit, photos by Michael Lundebrek

On a Saturday night in February, I slogged through slush to a celebratory reading, the capstone of the Chippewa Valley Writers Guild’s Weekend Writers Retreat at the Oxbow Hotel. Despite the weather ...

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Issue #376 January 23, 2019

Wheel of Misfortune

tripping her way into the puzzle of retirement

Jane Linton

Thirteen below zero, with wind chills lower still, as I scrape scraps from the hearty casserole we’ve just eaten into the disposal. The recipe claims it’s just what we need to keep the cold outside ...

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Issue #373 December 12, 2018

Three Bold Ideas for State Street

the city is talking about roundabouts, but we can try something even wilder

Laura Buchholz

State Street will likely be closed for a time next summer and fall, and the time to start making your contingency plans is now. As a homeowner on the majestic artery itself, the thought of State Street torn up for months ...

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Issue #368 October 3, 2018

Celebrating Heritage, Embracing Diversity

Eau Claire should be proud to recognize its first-ever Indigenous Peoples’ Day on Oct. 8

Nicole Withers

Monday, Oct. 8, will be the first official Indigenous Peoples’ Day in the city of Eau Claire. A year ago, the Eau Claire City Council passed a resolution declaring the second Monday in October – which is many places is recognized as Columbus Day – as Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

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Issue #367 September 19, 2018

Fathers, Sons, and Storms

defying rain, lightning, and familial fear to get the perfect photograph

Justin Patchin, photos by Justin Patchin

‘I think it would be a good idea if you got out of the water,” Dad implored as lightning brightened the dark sky above me. “Just a few more minutes,” I responded, as if this conversation had occurred 30 years earlier and

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Issue #365 August 22, 2018

Hitting Preconceptions out of the Park

Beep Baseball World Series in Eau Claire highlighted athleticism of the visually impaired

Jim Jeffries

Frank, my wife’s nephew, entered this world under emergency circumstances, and as a result, he is legally blind. Until I dated my wife, I had never known a visually-impaired person, so I treated Frank with kid gloves ...

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Issue #363 July 25, 2018

Feeling Write at Home

the Chippewa Valley’s strong, supportive literary community draws one young writer back

Katy Hackworthy, photos by Justin Patchin

On a Sunday afternoon in July 2017, I drove down a spindly driveway away from one of the most special weekends of my life and toward what I believed then to be a new phase of my young adulthood. I had spent the previous four days at Cirenaica, a writing residency in the woods of Fall Creek put on by the Chippewa Valley Writers Guild.

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Issue #362 July 11, 2018

Melting Memories

a Wisconsin farm boy, a coveted ice cream cone, and the complexity of interpreting family history

Tom Giffey

There are few summer pleasures more pure, more wholesome, or more in keeping with Wisconsin tradition than enjoying an ice cream cone on a hot day. We are, after all, the Dairy State. One of ...

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Issue #359 May 30, 2018

Heroics on (And Off) the Tundra

can legendary Lambeau Field compete with the “best night” of teens’ lives?

BJ Hollars, illustrated by Janae Breunig

On a recent visit to Green Bay, we do what is required of us: pay our respects to the hallowed ground of Lambeau Field. I am accompanied by my 6-year-old son and 3-year-old daughter, neither of whom ...

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Issue #356 April 18, 2018

Pop or Classical? Why Choose?

In a musically rich area like the Valley, we should take pride in enjoying different styles of music

Johannes Strohschänk

There are times when nothing tastes better than a generous plate of spare ribs straight from the grill slathered in barbecue sauce, a cob of corn oozing with salted butter, and a heap of tangy coleslaw, accompanied by a pint of Lazy Monk’s Bohemian Lager ...

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Issue #354 Mar. 21, 2018

Think Libraries Are Passé? Think Again

despite claims to the contrary, libraries are still vital to our communities

Rob Reid, photos by Andrea Paulseth

If your image of public libraries is like that new Jennifer Garner “What’s in your wallet?” commercial – the one where the librarian is shushed by disgruntled library patrons trying to read – then you probably ...

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Issue #352 Feb. 21, 2018

Lighting a Fire

UWEC’s Fire Ball more than a drag show

Katie Vagnino, photos by Randy Lee, Luong Huynh

It was one of those bleak January days when it’s dark by 4pm and you wonder if the weather is trolling you. I had just finished teaching my last class of the day at UW-Eau Claire and was trudging through Hibbard Hall ...

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