Volume One Contributors

writers, photographers, artists

Katie Larson


Katie Larson, a local nature lover and educational enthusiast, is always working to find common ground, make changes, teach something, and find new passions.

Content By This Contributor:

Chippewa Valley Parents Share Unique Ways They Celebrate

Bonni Knight, by Katie Larson, Tom Giffey, Rachel Hart-Brinson, Jessica Miller

Whichever holidays families celebrate this time of year, they inevitably develop traditions: Religious or secular, serious of silly, maintained for generations or ...

Family-Friendly Fest-Going in 6 Steps

summer and music are synonymous — here’s how to make bringing the kids easier

Katie Larson, photos by Mike O'Brien

From the age of 7, I spent a better part of two weeks at the Milwaukee lakefront enjoying the big bands, enduring the blistering sun, surviving the afternoon thunderstorms, and outsmarting the traffic on the way home.

Family-Friendly Fest-Going in 6 Steps

Katie Larson, photos by Mike O'Brien

When I was growing up, summertime always meant one thing: music – lots and lots of live music. From a young age, my parents brought me to festivals, big and small. I sang with the bands in a sea of people, surfed picnic tables, hopped bleachers, and loved to stand ...

Chartering a new course

Mondovi location eyed as project-based school for grade six-12

Katie Larson

Local school districts are struggling with accommodating all students who would like to enroll in alternative opportunities, and some established alternative programs don’t have district support to sustain their work or meet demand.

Chartering a New Course

Mondovi location eyed as project-based school for grades 6-12

Katie Larson

Choices: We all want them. Whether it be choice in what we buy, how we live, what we eat, who we support, what we want to be when we grow up, choice matters. But when it comes to educational opportunities ...

Look Ma! No Hands! The Freedom of Wearable Breast Pumps

Katie Larson

Giving birth to a child is the most precious feeling, and new moms everywhere can’t help but revel in the fact that their bodies are finally theirs again. Although this feeling is amazing ...

6 Ways to Make Storytime More Magical

Katie Larson

I will admit it: I am in love with the smell of my daughter’s hair. I smell it every night as I rest my chin on the side of her face while cozying up to read a book in the most uncomfortable ...

Schools' Open Enrollment Begins in February and Ends in April

Katie Larson, design by Serena Wagner

It’s that time of the year: Open enrollment season for the 20-18 school year! Open enrollment is an inter-district public school program that allows parents to apply for their children to attend any public ...

Youth in Government Students Learn From Experience

Katie Larson

In the Resource Room at the Eau Claire YMCA on a dark December night, 15 teens representing all three Eau Claire high schools assembled for the first Eau Claire Teen Issues Forum, hosted ...

Pausing to Learn a Lesson in Translation

Katie Larson

Over the past few weeks, when I find myself awake late at night – listening to my husband’s deep, peaceful breaths – a particular story has been popping into my head ...

WeBop Gets Kids Hip to Jazz Jive

Eric Christenson, photos by Katie Larson

There’s a room full of people and instruments buzzing. A rhythm section taps out a basic tune while kids, their parents, and other musicians alike are dancing, moving, and singing together ...

Illuminating Trip: Winter Lights in the Twin Cities

Katie Larson

Just shy of a two-hour drive from the Chippewa Valley one will find the wonders of light and mixed mediums in Bruno Munro’s Winter Lights exhibit at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum ...

Twist and Stretch: Yoga for Kids

teaching kids yoga basics can boost their breathing and strength

Katie Larson, photos by Andrea Paulseth

The word “yoga” means “union” and is generally associated with bringing the mind and body together. Aside from building strength and flexibility, yoga incorporates breathing and relaxation techniques designed to release stress and negativity from our bodies and minds ...

Learning to Code: It's Not Just for Teens Anymore

Katie Larson, photos by Andrea Paulseth

The message inscribed on a Post-it note and passed from one colleague to another during the first professional development day at the Chippewa Valley Montessori Charter School is pretty telling of the misconceptions ...

Magical Night of Laughs

ring in 2017 with comedian magician person David Harris

Katie Larson

Midwest Emmy Award-winning comedian and magician David Harris is laughing in the New Year with Kevin Cahak and Jodie Maruska at the Metropolis Resort on New Year’s Eve ...

Dynamite Duet

local jazz great returns for homecoming dinner concert

Katie Larson

Eau Claire native and multiple Grammy-nominated pianist Geoffrey Keezer is pairing up with jazz vocalist Gillian Margot on Wednesday, Jan. 11 for a night of entertainment and renowned cuisine at The Lakely. Keezer, hailed by musicians and ...

Big Events: New Year’s Eve in the Valley

Katie Larson

New Year’s Eve celebrations aren’t just for adults any more. The City of Eau Claire is hosting its inaugural Light Up Eau Claire New Year’s Eve Celebration, and various businesses, museums, and local attractions are hosting events for all ages to enjoy ...

Empowered Parents, Empowered Kids

veteran health educator offers guide through adolescence

Katie Larson

We’ve all done it as parents, teachers, aunts, uncles, or grandparents (well, maybe not as grandparents because they get the “fun jobs” associated with raising kids): getting into a power struggle ...

Ladies' Night Out at Apricot Lane

Katie Larson

Holiday shopping doesn’t have to be about everyone else but you. Apricot Lane Boutique, the newer fashion store in Oakwood Mall, hosts private Ladies Night Out fashion parties to help encourage you to think about yourself for at least one ...

6 Tips for New Year's Eve With Kids

Katie Larson

New Year’s Eve celebrations don’t have to be an early boring night just because the kids are present. In order to prove it, I put together a list of six easy to accomplish party planning tips that are sure to get the party started and keep it going until the last ball drops...

Leap Into Self-Reflection: Journal Prompts for the New Year

Katie Larson

Every good writer follows the old saying: “write what you know.” No one knows you better than yourself, so this set of writing prompts will challenge you to dig deep down into the depths of 2016 as you discover what went well and what could be a challenge in 2017...

Helping Teens Plan for the Real World

Katie Larson, photos by Jessica Vollmer

Preparing for the real world isn’t something that a typical eighth grader thinks about. After all, there are so many other day-to-day issues that take precedence, like determining what to do after school or deciding whether or not to post the latest selfie on Instagram ...

Free E-Books Are Only a Library Card Away

Katie Larson

When the chill of autumn gives way to the frost of winter, there is no better companion than a book to keep you warm. But what happens when you need a book and a trip to the library doesn’t fit on your to-do list? No worries, there are two apps for that: Overdrive and Freading.

Understanding the Struggle of Dyslexia

Katie Larson

The first sign for Heidi Olson that the tutoring offered by the Children’s Dyslexia Center of Upper Wisconsin paid off came in the form of a simple sentence etched on a Styrofoam plate: “I went fishing.” The idea that her son was enjoying some quiet recreation while the family slumbered wasn’t unusual for her sixth-grade son. But what was unusual was that the words were spelled correctly...

Kids Don't Need More Than a Spoonful of Sugar

Katie Larson

It is no surprise that excess sugar leads to tooth decay and stunts taste buds from maturing in children under two-years-old. Or that it is linked to the development of risk factors for heart disease and Type 2 Diabetes in children, teens and adults. But just how much sugar should be introduced in the average American’s diet is up for discussion and debate.

Young Volunteers Make a Difference

author & photographer by Katie Larson

Lakeshore Elementary School teacher Kelly Ballard believes in showing her fifth grade students the value of community service and volunteering. Every year, she encourages her students to volunteer their time and energy at the Feed My People Food Bank...

The Power of the Arts

Katie Larson

Individuals who go out of their way to ensure the arts don’t die in their schools deserve recognition for continuing to support the activities that enrich student’s lives...

Children's Museum Shows Off New Digs

Katie Larson, photos by Andrea Paulseth

Most people love to experience something new when in a familiar space. The Children’s Museum of Eau Claire played with this notion by combining several creative ideas and funds, generated from 9 months of consecutive revenue growth...

Helping Keep Each Other Warm

Katie Larson

Over the winter months, there is nothing better than the warmth generated from a soft, cozy blanket, especially when you are sick. HSHS Sacred Heart and St. Joseph’s hospitals are in need of new, clean, and comfortable blankets for their palliative care patients...

Safe Spaces and Familiar Faces

Katie Larson

The Eau Claire Police Department, other area law enforcement agencies, and 24-7 & West Wisconsin Telcom, have joined forces to promote safe practices and the Green Bay Packers by handing out trading cards...

You Can Help With Lights & Sights at Irvine Park's Christmas Village!

Katie Larson, photos by Andrea Paulseth

The staff at Irvine Park needs some help setting up the Christmas Village display this year. Slated to light up the park at 5pm on Thanksgiving Day, there is still a lot of work that needs to be accomplished before the opening ceremonies can commence...

Play Ball! Jeffers Road Park Is Now Open

Katie Larson, photos by Andrea Paulseth

To the delight of kids in the Eau Claire community, the new playground at Jeffers Road Park on Eau Claire’s northwest side is officially open...

Are We Addicted to Cheese? Yes? Ok.

Katie Larson

Ever have that moment at a football party when the cheese and sausage platter gets placed on the dining room table, exciting you to the point of jumping over the coffee table,

Serving up Local Meat

Katie Larson

Last year I challenged myself to make an entire Thanksgiving feast for all of the family to enjoy. It was my husband, daughter and I’s first year back to Eau Claire, and I wanted to celebrate by giving thanks ...

Manners and Magic Words: politeness goes a long way

Katie Larson

My husband and I have recently been trying to teach our 3-year-old daughter to use her manners, with a strong emphasis on those magic words: Please and thank you. Because this has been a constant point ...

Party Like It's the 90s!

Children’s Museum plans nostalgic shindig for grownups

Katie Larson

Grab your Hammer pants from your closet, dust off your oval-rimmed glasses, leave your angst at home, and head over to the Children’s Museum of Eau Claire for the After Dark 90s Party! This 21-or-older ...

Breaking Ground for Inclusion

Katie Larson, photos by Andrea Paulseth

The cry of “Let’s play ball!” will be heard at the newly developed baseball and softball fields at Jeffers Road Park next spring. However, come June 3, those words will be directed for the first time at the players ...

6 Tips for Family Movie Night

Katie Larson

Is your movie night stuck in a rut? Try some of these six simple (and cheap) ways to spruce up your next family movie night.

Your Coats Can Help Warm Up Cold Families

Katie Larson

The idea of not having a winter coat or proper winter apparel when the cold weather approaches is a scary thought for some Chippewa Valley residents ...

Car Seat Safety Made Easier by the Pros

Katie Larson

Loading the kids into the car can be a sweaty, stressful, hair-raising chore, which means that the importance of safety is, unfortunately, often overlooked ...

The Right Night Out

Oakwood Mall fashion boutique gives back and looks good doing it

Katie Larson, photos by Katie Larson

It might sound odd to have a small fashion boutique in the center of a large, box-store mall, but that didn’t stop Kim and Adam Verheyden from going outside the box to open ...

Increasing the Tempo

downtown coffee shop Caffe Tempo opening Water Street location

Katie Larson

Just two blocks west of UW-Eau Claire’s lower campus along Water Street, a new coffee shop with a familiar name, Caffe Tempo, hopes to be a place where people of all ages and a range of artistic ...