Volume One Contributors

writers, photographers, artists

Laura Lash


Laura Lash is a mother, yoga teacher, writer, and contributor to Chippewa Valley Family.

Content By This Contributor:

Collaboration & Creativity via Project-Based Learning

Laura Lash, photos by Laura Lash

Beth Duellman’s fourth-grade class at Sam Davey Elementary School is deep into its second trimester researching the theme, “How does geography affect industry in a particular region?” Four desks are pushed ...

Chippewa Valley Jewelry Designer Thrives on Elegant Curves

Laura Lash, photos by Andrea Paulseth

The Token Jewelry collection displays fine lines and delicate details in such an ethereal way it will have you thinking of silver linings on dark clouds or the sliver of an amber moon in the fall night sky ...

A Healing Journey

issues, approaches, and timing to post-partum rehab

Laura Lash

There is a growing awareness in the U.S. for childbearing women to seek help in adjusting to their post-baby body. This is not to be confused with the celebrity magazine headlines of “How I Got My Body Back” The goal is not to return ...

All the World's a Screen

UWEC will show three top international films

Laura Lash

Each semester, in the Woodland Theatre inside UW-Eau Claire’s Davies Center, a select few international films are screened within the roster of films chosen by the International Film Society ...

Healing Your Body After Having a Baby

issues, approaches, and timing to postpartum rehab

Laura Lash

Issues, approaches, and timing to postpartum rehab. There is a growing awareness in the U.S. for childbearing women to seek help in adjusting to their post-baby body ...

Pine Hollow Hands-On

UW-Stout audio club gets firsthand, in-studio chops

Laura Lash, Eric Christenson

It’s always been a goal of Pine Hollow Studio’s owner Evan Middlesworth to foster more recording engineers in the Chippewa Valley. That means hiring young producers to work ..

Future Hub of Activity

Local Lounge gets city approval for big event space

Laura Lash

Ground hasn’t yet been broken for the project, but The Hub is already gaining buzz. The Hub will be the new 5,000-square-foot event space alongside the Local Lounge, the new eatery on Clairemont Avenue ...

Keep Your Eyes Peeled

The Giants of Midgard let it rip on new album Beware

Laura Lash, photos by Andrea Paulseth

Giants of Midgard are about to release their new album Beware, a hyper-local telltale collection of songs with creative and comical titles. The band originated in 2013 with Jodi Hanson on vocals and ...

Food for Change

Market Food Co-op to screen documentary

Laura Lash, photos by Timothy Mather

In celebration of National Food Co-op Month, Menomonie Market Food Co-op is hosting a screening of Food for Change, a documentary detailing food co-ops as both a political and economic movement across the country ...

Farming & Charming

locally produced WPT show returns for season four

Laura Lash, photos by Mark Aumann

Popular locally produced TV show Around the Farm Table has launched its fourth season this fall on Wisconsin Public Television. A true fan favorite – this show has excelled at providing glimpses into life at Wisconsin farms ...

Power, Privilege, Protest.

Eau Queer film fest’s 7th year goes big, doesn’t flinch

Laura Lash

he 7th annual Eau Queer Film Festival will be screened at UW-Eau Claire’s Woodland Theater October 11-15. This year’s theme “Power, Privilege, Protest: It’s Personal. It’s Political.” underlines ...

Cart and Soul

Soul Brewed mobile coffee finds a home in downtown Eau Claire

Laura Lash, photos by Andrea Paulseth

The beans are sealed in an unbleached, soft brown envelope of a bag. The company name, Soul Brewed Coffee Roasters, is scrawled in a seemingly quill-inked print. An evergreen stands tall beside the name, as if nature ...

Vicarious Roller Grrrl

roller derby is an exercise in empowerment – for fans as well as competitors

Laura Lash, photos by Luong Huynh

As we enter the sports center, the matchup has already begun. The Chippewa Valley Roller Girls are hosting the Keweenaw Roller Girls from ...

If You Can’t Beat ’Em, Eat ’Em at Land Shark Martial Arts

Land Shark Martial Arts’ slogan means if you have a problem, make the solution

Laura Lash, photos by Andrea Paulseth

Master Curtis Michael Huff invited me to visit the Land Shark Martial Arts dojo to see his teaching and students in action. Upon entering the space, I was struck by the bright cheerful paint colors and the oceanic decor – four shrunken wood surfboards decorating the front of a Tahitian counter and the image of a smiling walking land shark, “Sharky,” ...

Building a bridge for Hmong youth

mentoring program helps young people connect two cultures

Laura Lash

On the bright corner of Wisconsin and Farwell streets in downtown Eau Claire is the office of the Eau Claire Area Hmong Mutual Assistance Association. Since 1982, this organization has helped integrate Hmong families and individuals into our community. For adults, the association can provide interpreters when language barriers exist ...

Cinematic World Tour

UW-EC’s International Film Series offers four fine films for spring semester

Laura Lash

Each semester, the Woodland Theater at UW-Eau Claire screens a dozen or more hand-picked films spanning many years and countries of origin. These choices are made by the University Activities Commission (UAC), which chooses domestic films ...

Center Yourself

former pastor details guide to spiritual mindfulness

Laura Lash, photos by Andrea Paulseth

The Center is a destination here in Eau Claire. Out on Highway 12, tucked in above Otter Creek and the woods surrounding it, this stone cottage is home to healing arts practices and other guided spiritual journeys. Being in The Center’s practice room, to look upon the tall trees and the cascading slope ...

How a New England vegetarian adapted to her Wisconsin in-laws’ hunting lifestyle

how a New England vegetarian adapted to her Wisconsin in-laws’ hunting lifestyle

Laura Lash

Awaking in the middle of the night to watch Alternative Nation on MTV, my teenaged self was obsessed with the Boston band Letters to Cleo. Their song “Awake” featured lyrics like, “You’re awake and I’m asleep and / we are so complete that way. / You’re asleep and I’m awake and / everything’s so great.” ...

Art for All Ages with the ARTmobile

Laura Lash

However YOU pronounce it – Mo-bull? Mo-bile? Mo-beel? – we all know and love the ARTMobile, managed by the Eau Claire Regional Arts Council. There’s no specific vehicle, yet there are ample opportunities to partake in art with your children – babies through teenagers – while out and about in Eau Claire ...

Safe Sleep Program focuses on infant safety

Laura Lash

A new Safe Sleep Program is being launched by the Eau Claire County Infant Safe Sleep Task Force. Spearheaded by Brook Berg, family living educator at UW-Extension, the task force is a select group of one dozen conscientious community members from our local family advocacy organizations ...

Locating the Latitude

downtown EC yoga studio will offer diverse classes

Laura Lash, photos by Laura Lash, Amy Erickson

In the fall of 2003, Amy Erickson traveled from her hometown of St. Francis, Minn., and arrived on the UW-Eau Claire campus sight unseen. Going on the friendly reputation of the school and the Chippewa Valley, the eager undergrad fell in love with the community ...

Pretty & Pristine

Osseo's Vintage Vixen finds the beauty in worn out pieces

Laura Lash, photos by Laura Lash

Amongst the rolling hills of Osseo, under the canopy of a pristine blue sky, I had the great pleasure of meeting Wendy Hageness, proprietor of Vintage Vixen. Immediately, I was struck by her crisp style and warm charm. Her work outfit is that of an experienced carpenter with excellent style ...

Building on Local Food

Forage, a community food space, will triple in size

Laura Lash

While being interviewed about the current expansion going on at Forage owner Trish Cummins liberally uses the term “incubator.” The “Kitchen Incubator” is a center for catering, retail, and wholesale production – versions of which are already at work in Boston ...

Harness the Wind

CVTC prepares for power-generating turbine

Laura Lash

While on a road trip in California, driving from Los Angeles to Palm Springs, I came upon a stellar sight. As the landscape got drier, past the city limits and pushing into wide open space, I was greeted by miles of wind turbines at work. It was a beautiful sight; having never seen such a large display ...

Supporting Acts

from vinyl shops to screen printers, businesses and individuals are crucial to musical success

Laura Lash

We are all familiar with the philosophical posturing/party joke, “If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” Many a musician will create music for the pure love of it and the need to express themselves in this language. More often, however, musicians are eager ...

Student Directed

Montessori Charter School students launch film fest

Laura Lash, photos by Lee Butterworth

The first ever Chippewa Valley Montessori Film Festival features an already stunning roster of ideas and characters at play: Big cats, roaring engines, princesses, temples, birds, friends, Target, magic, love, banana slugs, and ideas so completely out-of-this-world they could only come from the über-creative minds of kids ...

“From Eau Claire” A Big-City Family Finds the Perfect Place to Live

Laura Lash

My husband and I started dating nine years ago. We met at our shared workplace in the Loop, downtown Chicago. He had slowly traversed to Chicago after growing up in and around Eau Claire. Once he began pursuing his tech career, he and a small group of friends, all Eau Claire ex-pats ...

Westside Eatery to Feature Fifties Flair

the Classic Garage will offer a unique culinary and automotive experience

Laura Lash, photos by Andrea Paulseth

Texas transplants Rick Payton and Alex Karrer are hard at work on The Classic Garage, a new eatery on Third Street in the old home of Pure Oil and Buck’s Classic Auto Repair. With some Texan flavor and a refined business plan, Payton and Karrer are aiding in development of Eau Claire’s West Bank neighborhood. With a solid theme and a lil’ spit and polish, this auto repair garage is being transformed into a classic 1950s diner and vintage Cadillac showplace with an anticipated opening ...

A Bridge to the Beans

couple re-enters coffee business with CF café

Laura Lash, photos by Andrea Paulseth

Scott and Shirley Rogers have been in the coffee business for more than 10 years. Between 2004 and 2014, their coffee shop at Oakwood Mall, Gloria Jean’s, purveyed the creative coffee experience Eau Claire folks were seeking to fuel ...

Consignment Sale

children’s consignment sale has a rink full of bargains

Laura Lash

Here We Grow Again is back for its biannual children’s consignment sale at the Hobbs Ice Arena. With 10 years of experience, curators Donna Kmetz and Mary Jo Hanson have this sale professionally staged and extraordinarily run. The event spans the ...

Berg's Moves

chef’s classes focus on cooking with local ingredients

Laura Lash, photos by Nick Meyer

A forage is a “a wide search over an area in order to obtain something, especially food or provisions.” Eau Claire’s own Forage, located in Banbury Place, is home to the teachings of Chef Nathan Berg. This Spring you can experience the ‘Space ...

Room to Brew

Coffee Grounds begins its own nano-scale brewery

Laura Lash, photos by Andrea Paulseth

As the owners of The Coffee Grounds, Eric and Julie Nelson have long been purveyors of the finer things to eat, drink, and enjoy. Soon they will have a nano-brewing operation in-house to produce and serve fine beers. “Nano-brewing” is a newer ...

What Is Mindfulness?

Laura Lash

Yoga, meditation, and mindfulness have infused our pop-culture. Even if you have not partaken in these practices, you may recognize yoga poses happening in a yogurt commercial or Buddha jokes in a print ad. Acupuncture has a place in chiropractic ...

Coast to Coast ... Almost

new owners will expand on tradition at Brackett Bar

Laura Lash, photos by Andrea Paulseth

When my husband and I were courting, departing his parents’ home near Foster, we’d head into Eau Claire for a night out. Afterward as we drove out of town, heading south on U.S. 53, past Oakwood where the speed limit is 65, then 55, we’d slowly ...

A New Deal

Raw Deal reboots with menu, decor changes

Laura Lash, photos by Tim Mather

The anthropology of a community space: embraced subtleties and their thoughtfulness can go unnoticed when you are the incredibly comfortable person, slinking into a plush chair with a hot cup of joe. One year ago, the Raw Deal family began ...

Films from Abroad

UW-Eau Claire’s International Film Society has four fine foreign films for us

Laura Lash

Each fall and spring semester at UW-Eau Claire, the University Activities Committee and the International Film Society collaborate to create a diverse film series for the on-campus Woodland Theater. I’m honored to be a Community Member ...

Sarah Lou Steps Out from Behind the Curtain

Laura Lash

Hudson-born Sarah Lou Richards released a new country-pop album in November. After graduating from UW-Eau Claire, SLR moved the Nashville to grow her singer/songwriter career. She uses a diminutive typeface on the album cover of her third ...

Silver Screenings

Woodland Theater offers facilities, films the Valley wouldn’t normally get

Laura Lash, photos by Andrea Paulseth

I obsessed about films at a young age. Begging my parents for rides to the local video store, I would use my paper route money to rent VHS tapes of foreign films and “independent” releases – ones that were far beyond the scope of a typical pre-teen.

Longfellow Kids Set Course for Adventure

Laura Lash

Longfellow Elementary School teachers Sarah Duerre and Carrie Gee, along with Holly Larson and UW-Eau Claire, have created Adventure Kids, an outdoor learning experience for their school’s 60 fifth graders. Additional leadership comes ...

Time to Hit the Sheets (of Ice)

in Eau Claire, learning to curl is just a stone’s throw away

Laura Lash

Curling doesn’t get much exposure. Sure, folks get intrigued by it when the Winter Olympics roll around. But it’s not a featured scholastic sport. It’s not a spectator sport. But is it a full body workout? Jeff Thompson of ...

Food of India

filling Eau Claire’s Indian food void from a spot in Oakwood Mall

Laura Lash

As the chill sets in prematurely around town, consider warming up with the spices and sauces of Eastern Indian food. Using the Chipotle model of good-food-fast (not fast-food), Harpreet Singh and Ryan Rubenzer have opened Food of India right ...