When woodcarver Kim Bredeson crafted a mantel for an employee of the Robert Mondavi Winery, he received a bottle of Opus One as thanks. For Kim and his wife, Tami, the bottle uncorked a five-year fascination with wine that culminated in the Bredeson's purchase of Carlos Creek Winery. On grounds surrounded by five lakes—Ida, L'Homme Dieux, Miltona, Darling and Carlos—the Bredeson's plant unorthodox grape varieties such as King of the North and Petite Pearl, all of which can withstand temperatures 30 degrees and below. Those grapes eventually yield Carlos Creek Winery's award-winning wines, including the riesling-like Wobegon White and the pinot noir-inspired Marquette, a triple gold medal winner at the sixth annual Mid-American Wine Competition.
As Kim leads tours of the vineyards and complementary tours through Carlos Creek Winery's indoor production area and wine cellar, the staff distributes samples and souvenir tasting glasses in the tasting room. Guests can tap their toes to year-round live music every weekend or explore the winery's expansive grounds, which include bike trails, a 3.5-acre maze, and a giant garden chess set, ideal for convincing Bobby Fischer he's shrinking. Every third weekend of September, Kim and Tami amp up the festivities with their Grape Stomp and Fall Festival, where visitors can stomp grapes, admire blown glass and chainsaw carvings, and laugh along to live comedy shows.
Furnishing all manner of domicile since 1967, Hennen Furniture equips consumers and their crash pads with name brand furniture, mattresses, and rugs while employing a staff that emanates comprehensive customer service. Add texture to fabric-free floors with a series of 5 x 8 area rugs ($99 each); release laps from the burdens of books and computers with oak sofa servers ($49), portable, tray-topped tables; or rekindle the joys of non-lethal tilt-a-whirling with oak backless swivel counter stools ($99). In addition to their expansive selection of house-convalescing contrivances, Hennen’s offers an array of helpful services, such as complimentary in-home design consulting to ensure that customers create a symbiotic relationship between their space and set pieces.
Antiques, books, home decor, and gently used name-brand clothing find a second life at Barker's More 4 Less, which is one of the largest stores of its kind in Central Minnesota. Most items of clothing are under $2, and most kids' items are under $1, and both locations offer a selection of donated men's and women's apparel, computers and other electronics, kitchenware, and household items.
In celebration of its hearty, handcrafted wines, Glacial Ridge Winery hosts the Annual Grape Stomp amid the five acre apple orchard on its grounds. Duos can flash VIP sipping passports valid for express check-in to receive a pair of personal wine glasses, and saunter up to tasting stations throughout the grounds, where they may each sample 12 of the winery's specialty flavors, including the denim-overalls varietal. Crafted on-site, these wines range from the complex and smoky Green Lake Girl cabernet and the Sippin' From a Slipper white wine—a silver medal winner at the 2010 Finger Lakes International Wine Competition—to the sweet Jimmy Appleseed apple wine, which is concocted from a blend of five apples plucked from the on-site apple orchard. In addition to the tasting, the Grape Stomp hosts live music and a grape-stomping contest in which participants team up to plod through buckets of future wine.
I am a wood fire potter living in St. Joseph, Minnesota using local/native clay . I draw inspiration from nature and my surroundings, incorporating them into the work. My specific interests lie in the raw clay, how its surface changes do to atmosphere, flame and ash to create a new form.
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