Northwoods Report

Northwoods Report

I just looked at the calendar and noticed that I'm about 2 weeks out of heading to the Northwoods of Wisconsin.  Can't wait.   I just got a report the other day the the ice is finally gone.

It won't take long for the lakes to warm up.  And from my friend Mark at the Forest Lake Country Store, I received the latest newsletter from the Northwoods.  Check it out.

Great food and a whole lot more,,,   May 2014 News

We will be closed on May 16th, 17th and 18th for our daughter Laurens wedding.  We were able to spend some time with her and Brock while we were closed and look forward to the wedding.  They are having a small family wedding close to Fond Du Lac Wisconsin. Horicon for any of you that know the smaller towns around there. We regret any inconvenience the closure may cause you.  Rest assured, we will enjoy the family time around the wedding!

Spring is wresting its way into the north woods a little bit each day.  The change is fun to watch and probably at a record setting pace!  Opening day of fishing in Wisconsin will be on frozen water.  Bring your tip-ups!  With luck the lakes will be open for the Michigan opener on May 15th

Robins have been around for about a month already.  Each bare patch of ground holds hope for the robins to find a morning meal.  It is a pleasure to be outside in the early morning and be greeted by the song of a robin.  Geese and swans have been around for several weeks as well and the sound of ducks can be heard on small pieces of open water near shorelines.  There is a lot of talk about bears prowling around looking for easy meals at bird feeders or dumpsters.

Four seasons, and the joy of watching the change is one of the reasons we live in the north woods.  This one is definitely one to behold as the snow is reluctant to leave and spring works hard to burst forth!

Here is restaurant news from Land O’ Lakes.  Recently the Bear Trap restaurant was sold to Tom Baertschy.  They had a soft opening last weekend and opened this Thursday to excellent reviews.  Tom was raised in the restaurant business and also has another restaurant in Madison.  Right now he is living full time at the Bear Trap.  Next, Lisa and Paul Stemen (previous owners of Bent’s Camp) have purchased Rob’s Loose Moose.  The new name will be the Twilight Supper Club and they will be open in Mid May.  They have a new menu, wine list and more.  Now if you are looking for a Panini sandwich, Pizza a great breakfast or Friday fish dinner we hope to still see you at the Country Store!

New in the Store

Instead of pushing products on you this month, we will introduce the staff that will be on hand now and thru the summer.  You time at the store should be pleasurable and good staff is the backbone of our effort to please you.  Here are the folks you can look for this summer:

Lynn Roth:  Lynn works here a couple days year round.  Lynn has two children in the LOL Elementary.  We appreciate the time she can take from being a great mom to help us in the store

Ashley Caudill:  Ashley is a nursing student at Findlandia University in Hancock Michigan.  Ashley is the granddaughter of Vicki Caudill and Kathy Nordeen, long time residents in Land O’ Lakes.  This is Ashley’s second summer and is tireless in her efforts to set the store apart with quality food and service. She helps us during her summer vacation and when she is home on holiday vacations.

Hayley Garrison: Hayley is graduating from Watersmeet High School this spring and will be heading off to Central Michigan University next fall.  Hayley keeps a smile on her face and quality service for all Country store customers.

Kelly Kachelski:  Kelly is the dance instructor at LOLA, teaching all forms of dance to aspiring dancers.  She is only in the area for a month is the summer and we are happy to have her on the staff while she is here.

Luke Simons:  Luke is a student at Northland Pines High School and works for us at the Country Store all summer and holiday breaks.  Luke is a talented musician and works as hard for us at the store as he does at making music.  Luke is a joy to have around the store.

Joe and Jason Cools:  This tag team duo spends their summers in Land O’ Lakes with their grandparents Sherry and Joe Beers.  This will be Joe’s third summer and Jason’s second summer at the store.  It is refreshing to see two youngsters that work so hard.  They help us set our store apart.

Stephanie Cain:  This is our second oldest daughter and mother of our only two grandchildren.  Her and her husband Chad are living in Land O’ lakes now and Steph is helping us a couple days a week.  If you see a slightly taller and younger version of someone that looks like Kris, that will be Steph.

Olivia Gostisha:  Olivia has moved back to the area (Eagle River) and will fill in for us around her regular job.  Like Steph, she is very lucky to resemble her mother (rather than her father) and has grown up tending to store duties.  Also like Stephanie, we are happy to have some family helping us build our little store business!

We are always on the look-out for quality workers.  If you know someone that works hard and is looking for a few hours in the summer, please send them our way!

Wine Special

This month we are featuring two nice Italian wines.  Both are from Benvolio.  We have had the Pinot Grigio at the store with great success.  The Rosso is new to the Wisconsin market.  This month there is special pricing that makes these great wines very affordable!  Here are the tasting notes:

Benvolio Pinot Grigio:  Delicate nuances of wild flowers, rose water and lychee on the nose, with apple and pear flavors on the palate. Dry, crisp and full-bodied with refreshing acidity and a clean finish.  Wonderful lightly chilled as an aperitif or with salads, or chicken and risotto-based dishes.

Benvolio Rosso:  50% Sangiovese and 50% Merlot.  This amusing Italian red delivers rich aromas of dark plum, licorice and sugar cherry. The bright mouth-feel is packed with red and blue fruit flavors, a plush and layered finish seasoned with light oak spices.

The best method to order is via a reply email to this newsletter.  Please use for your orders.  Orders need to be received by Sunday May 11th and the wine will be ready for pick up on Monday May 19th, in plenty time for your Memorial Day entertainment plans.

Events in the Store

May 13th  Sommelier Kim Fisher presenting the fine wines of Badger 5:30 PM

Kim Fisher and Nina Martin will be here presenting some outstanding wine opportunities from Badger Liquor and Wine, our largest distributor.  Kim has incredible knowledge of wines from around the world and an exemplary style for presenting these in a very informative and understanding manner.

The evening will include education and a “varietal throw-down”.  Kim and Nina have chosen two different wines from 5 different varietals: Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon and Red Blend.  Kim and Nina will present each wine both demonstrating different characteristics in a varietal.  You will learn about different wine maker’s skills and try some truly unique wines.

Each wine will be paired with a small food or appetizer item to accentuate the wines flavor profile.  While this is not a meal, size portion, there will be several small courses!

Cost is $20 per person.  Reservations are required for this special event.  As a special purchase incentive, if you mix and match any 12 bottles of wine from this event, you will receive two Reidel crystal wine glasses!  Call or stop at the store to purchase your seats SOON.  Seating is limited to just 24 people!

June 18th  Land O’ Lakes Artisans Cheese night at the Country Store  4:30 PM

We will host the annual fund raiser for the Land O’ Lakes Artisans (LOLA) in our Wine Garden!  LOLA is a great asset to the Land O’ Lakes community, offering art education, knowledge and entertainment thru out the year.  This event helps the LOLA building fund.  Tickets are available from LOLA.  There will be wine, appetizers and a large spread of great cheeses included in your ticket price.

August 8th and 9th Ride With Leinie Event

Friday August 8th we will host a Leinie’s Honey Weiss Fish Fry.  Honey Weiss is the official beer of Friday Night Fish Fry all over Wisconsin.   We will have raffles, deep fried fish and of course Honey Weiss from 5PM – 8 PM.  Cost will be $12 per head for the fish fry and beer available by the glass or pitcher.  Bring the whole family for a family oriented, shore lunch fish fry!

Saturday August ninth is the official Ride with Leinie.  This is a fund raising event for the Wilderness Lakes Trail.  We will have Dick Leinenkugel on hand to MC the event and we will serve 3 different Leinenkugel beers.  All proceeds from this event go to the WLT organization and helps build the bicycle trail in Land O’ Lakes.  Tickets will be available on line at and at the Forest Lake Country Store closer to the event.  Lock these dates on your calendar for the Ride with Leinie!

Events in the North Woods

We are happy to share your event or organization information.  We are great at cutting and pasting your information into the newsletter.  However, we are not very good mind readers.  Send us your info in the middle of one month for publication the following month.  Earlier is always better!

Flea Market starts on May 29th      Every Thursday from 9 AM – 3 PM

The Flea Market is found on the Town Hall Grounds about a quarter mile west of the Farmers Market site.  Crafts and Treasures abound in the site each week!  The Market is held rain or shine!!

If you are interested in a booth space for a single week, a couple week, or for the entire season contact Kristy at 715 545 3340.  This is a great way to clean out the basement, garage or attic and sell your treasures to the shoppers that fill the site each week!

May 12th  Land O’ Lakes Farmers Market First Day!!  8:30 to Noon

Held in the old lumber yard across the street from the Land O’ Lakes Library (a quarter mile east of the Land O’ Lakes Flea Market) you can load up on seasonal fresh produce, vegetables, baked goods and more!

Friday, May 23 -Sunday, May 25.  Boulder Junction Town Wide Rummage Sale

The Boulder Junction Town Wide Rummage Sale is taking place Memorial Day Weekend - Friday, May 23 thru Sunday, May 25.  Sale hours and days vary by individual location.  Find that treasure you have been looking for, everything from antiques, toys, clothes, sporting goods, household items, and furniture.  Stop in to the Boulder Junction Chamber of Commerce beginning Tuesday, May 20 to pick up your map to the sales around town.  Sale listings and the map will also be available on the week of the sale.  For more information contact the Boulder Junction Chamber of Commerce, 715-385-2400.

Land O’ Lakes Library Events

May 9th Movie afternoon 1 PM
Free popcorn, bring the kids!  Enjoy family fun at the LOL public Library!!!

The Land O’ Lakes Public Library has a great web site

Check this out to keep you up to date on changes, events and additions to one of Land O’ Lakes best community hot spots!

Land O’ Lakes Artisans (LOLA) and Artistree Events
Two Art Classes for Home-Schooled Students:

May 8  Deconstructed Book Sculptures 10:30 - 12:00
Children Ages:  7 - 17
All materials supplied.  Cost:  $10.00  Held @ LOLA Center for the Arts

Students will create a sculpture using paper manipulation techniques, learning about symmetry, balance and positive/negative space.  All materials included. Space is limited, so register early!  Deadline for payment & registration:  May 1

May 15" Sheepish Composition"  10:30 - 12:00
Children Ages:  7 - 17
All materials supplied.  Cost:  $15.00

Held @ LOLA Center for the Arts.   Working with wool roving, students will "paint" with the wool on burlap and needle felt the completed fiber art piece that is suitable for framing.  All materials included.
Space is limited, so register early!  Deadline for payment & registration:  May 8

Classes for everyone!

May 17  Cooking Class:  Freeze Now, Bake Later – Entrees 10 AM - Noon
LOLA Center, Adults  $35.00

May 31 Introduction to Watercolors 10:00 - 3:30
Adults  $35.00   All materials supplied.   Held @ LOLA Center for the Arts

Artist Wendy Powalisz will teach this beginners class.  There will be discussion of materials; students will learn basic washes, strokes and simple techniques that will lead to success in painting with transparent watercolors.

Bring any watercolor supplies you may already have and a bag lunch.  Deadline for payment & registration:  May 24  Please call to register for all classes @ 715-547-3950.   Leave a message and Wendy will return your call.

All classes must be pre-paid prior to deadline.  No refunds will be given for cancellations after class deadline.  Any class payments can be mailed to:

LOLA  P.O. Box 981  Land O' Lakes, WI  54540

Food Pantry News

Wish List items include toothpaste, shampoo, and cereal.

Cash donations can be made anytime to the Headwaters Food Pantry.  Your $1 contribution buys 5 pounds of meat through Feeding America. With so little, we can do so much!  Hunger doesn't have a season. Cash Donations can be sent to:

Headwaters Food Pantry PO Box 561 Land O’ Lakes, WI 54540

The Mail Carrier food drive is set for Saturday May 10.  Watch for a detailed flyer from your local post office!

The volunteers at the food pantry and the community we serve thank you for your generosity. The food pantry is open the first and third Wednesday of each month from 8:30AM- 11:30AM; stop in to see your community at work!

Conserve School News

Conserve School is named a 2014 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School by U.S. Secretary of Education

Acting Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality Mike Boots joined U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan on Earth Day to announce that Conserve School, in Land O’ Lakes, Wisconsin is among the 2014 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools award honorees.

Conserve School was nominated by Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction State Superintendent Tony Evers. In a news release recognizing Wisconsin’s Green Ribbon Schools Evers said, “Congratulations to our Green Ribbon Schools. Any school that earns this designation has worked hard over the long haul to find sustainable ways of improving environmental impacts, monetary costs, and the health of students and staff.”

Conserve School’s mission is to inspire young people to environmental stewardship. Since its beginning it has worked to reduce environmental impacts and costs through both school design and operations. The school gardens, wilderness education curriculum, and commitment to healthy foods are key components of Conserve School’s focus on health and wellness. As a semester high school focused on environmental stewardship Conserve School weaves environmental and sustainability literacy throughout its program. The school’s Stewardship in Action program educates students about green career pathways and ways in which they can make a difference in their home communities.

“Our faculty and staff have worked tirelessly since the school opened twelve years ago to integrate environmental stewardship and sustainability into all aspects of the academic and extracurricular programs,” said Assistant Head of School Mary Anna Thornton, “and it is wonderful to have their efforts recognized with an award of this caliber.”

“Conserve School could not have achieved this award without the support from many partners including Green & Healthy Schools Wisconsin, Audubon International, Sodexo, the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point, and the Wisconsin Association of Environmental Education,” said Head of School Stefan Anderson.

Forty-eight schools were honored for their exemplary efforts to reduce environmental impact and utility costs, promote better health, and ensure effective environmental education, including civics and green career pathways.

“Today’s honorees are modeling a comprehensive approach to being green by encompassing facility, wellness and learning into their daily operations,” said Secretary Duncan. “They are demonstrating ways schools can simultaneously cut costs, improve health, and engage students with hands-on learning that prepares them with the thinking skills necessary to be successful in college and careers.”

“Schools all over the country can look to today’s honorees as models for creating a healthier learning environment while lowering energy bills and preparing students for success in the 21st century economy,” said Acting Chair Mike Boots. “The schools and districts being honored today are taking smart, innovative steps to reduce environmental impacts and teach students the kinds of sustainable practices that they can carry with them into their homes and future careers.”

A report with highlights on the 57 honorees along with more information on the federal recognition award can be found at

Video information about Conserve School is available at:

Conserve School is hosting a world class run this summer, here is a hot link to the information:

Last, from Conserve here is a way to see the Land O’ Lakes weather

The other new thing is the Conserve School weather station and webcam. The picture is refreshed every couple of minutes.  This is available from the Conserve School website at:

Conserve is a great neighbor in the Land O’ Lakes community. Look for them and like them on Facebook.  You will see some great north woods scenery and some more local news.

Land O’ Lakes Community Garden:  Gardeners keeping plots from last year are welcome to get into the garden whenever they can.  We won't have an official "Opening Day" but will schedule some sort of "Introduction to the Garden" for new gardeners at some point. We're working with Conserve School to get students in to help us open up. Stay tuned for more information on both those items when dates have been firmed up.

There was interest in a Seed Exchange this year.  Part of the reason we get such crowded garden plots is because there's more seeds in a seed packet than we can possibly used in a 8' x 16' plot. and we all hate to waste them. It makes good sense to share them with each other. We've set Wednesday, May 7th to do just that.  Join your fellow gardeners at Hamburger Night at the VFW Hall at 6 p.m.on May 7th. We'll have a box set up for exchanging seeds.  As you know, the VFW is our landlord. This group makes their land available to us every year for the Community Garden, so we like to patronize their events as much as possible.  We’ll bring the Fortex beans many of you ordered.  All new gardeners are invited to come for the wonderful burgers, whether or not they want seeds. Friends of the garden, prior gardeners--all are welcome.  Just come for the fun and camaraderie.  (I just looked up that word to make sure I spelled it right. The definition is "mutual trust and friendship among people who spend a lot of time together."  Yep, that would be us!)

On August 29, we're planning a Garden Walk to let "outsiders" in to see what we're growing and what the garden is all about.  August 29 is the last Friday of the month, which is our date for the August Happy Hour from 4-6-.  You're welcome to bring any friends, neighbors, interested parties in that afternoon before the Happy Hour to browse the garden.  Your guests are welcome to join us at Happy Hour with their own favorite beverages.  The more the merrier!

Fourth of July parade. It's always fun to be part of the small-town holiday festivities. Last year, Jack and Vicki Perella took charge of building us a float and won us a third-place trophy.  We were very pleased. We're looking for a couple good souls to come up with a float for the Garden for this year. We have some contacts (for tractors and tractor beds, etc) if someone is willing to take this on. Let us know.

If you are interested in having a plot this year or need more information about the Community Garden contact Corinne Duerkop at

People around Land O’ Lakes

Belated wishes to those who already celebrated their May birthdays!  We sufficiently embarrassed Bruce Becker with song on his birthday at our lunch counter.

May 2 Bruce Becker celebrates his Birthday
May 3 Carol Becker and Marissa Zane celebrate their birthdays
May 5th is Ralph and Jeannie Sitzbergers anniversary, and Karen Turnquist and Tom Dowd’s birthdays.
May 8 is also Tom and Jerry Olk’s birthday.
May 11 Rhonda Christenson, Bonnie Martineck and Rhoda Sharpee celebrate their birthday
May 11th is also Mother’s Day.  Remember Mom this Sunday!
May 12 Painless Pete and Diane celebrate their wedding anniversary
May 13th is Linda Coyle’s birthday!!
May 14th is Patricia Juday’s birthday and is shared by our son-in-law Chad Cain, and Mike Christensen.
May 16th is Bob Welter’s birthday
May 17 is Tom Otto’s birthday
May 19th Linda Wheeler celebrates her birthday
May 20th is Myrtle Sharka’s birthday
May 23rd Larry Hemauer celebrates his birthday!
May 25th Barb Benson enjoys her birthday
May 27th is a birthday trifecta Brian Achuff and his twin sister Tina celebrate their birthdays and Tom Wheeler also celebrates his birthday!
May 31st is the anniversary of Donna and Lawrence Dow

This is a longer letter than usual.  A lot of unique things are happening in the north woods. Nearly all of our informational material is donated by groups and associations and we are happy to share what we receive.  If there are things that you would like to see included in the newsletter let us know.  We will work on finding the information.

Thanks for taking the time to read the newsletter.  More importantly, thank you for the time you spend at the Forest Lake Country Store.  We look forward to your next visit.

Best regards,

Kris and Mark Gostisha and girls
Forest Lake Country Store
6256 County Road B     PO Box 537  Land O’ Lakes WI 54540     715 547 8222

Store Hours
Friday and Saturday 8 AM – 8 PM
Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday 8 AM – 2 PM
Closed on Tuesdays

Our longer summer hours will start on June 6th!

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