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PASTURE PERFORMANCES is part of Fermentation Fest in Reedsburg
The striking natural landscape of Sauk County serve as both a theatre and backdrop to a variety of performances taking place on the Farm/Art Dtour. Artists, musicians, dancers and performers showcase their talents and embrace the land as their stage.
Kanopy Dance in a past Pasture Performance
It is part of Fermentation Fest – A Live Culture Convergence is an annual celebration of live culture in all its forms, from dance to yogurt, poetry to sauerkraut. Presented by Reedsburg, WI-based Wormfarm Institute, Fermentation Fest brings together farmers, chefs, artists, poets and performers in the beautiful working lands of Sauk County, WI for nine days of tastings, demonstrations, cooking classes, art events, performances, food carts and more.
SIXTH ANNUAL FERMENTATION FEST OCTOBER 1-9, 2016 EXPECTED TO DRAW 25,000 TO RURAL SAUK COUNTY
REEDSBURG, WI, August 17, 2016 — Wormfarm Institute, working with farmers, landowners and communities of central Sauk County, announces the Sixth Annual Fermentation Fest –A Live Culture Convergence beginning October 1, 2016 and running through October 9. The Fest is a lively, multi-faceted opportunity for rural and urban visitors to experience the land that sustains us in new ways during the harvest season. The Fest invites the public from near and far to spend a day – or a few – exploring temporary site-responsive art installations by nationally-acclaimed artists, a variety of pasture performances, 44 fermentation-focused classes ranging from bread to chocolate, yogurt to beer, and presentations by best-selling food writers Sandor Katz and Peter Reinhart.
“The Fest is only 55 miles northwest of Madison, and midway between Chicago and Minneapolis, perfectly situated to bring together the region’s most talented chefs, scientists, artists, brewers, bakers, poets and cheesemakers, each in their own way celebrating abundance and transformation” said Donna Neuwirth, Wormfarm Institute Executive Director and co-founder.
Beginning in Reedsburg, the Fest’s signature attraction, the Farm/Art DTour, leads visitors out and through the agricultural landscapes and small towns of central Sauk County. Last year 20,000 traveled the 50-mile self-guided DTour through working farm land punctuated by temporary art installations, pasture performances, educational Field Notes, local food vendors and roadside poetry.
“The DTour is a multi- sensory, leisurely, educational meander,” Neuwirth said. In past years DTourists have come across giant straw animals leaping over fences, glowing corn cribs, crocheted leaves engulfing a farmhouse, and a mini circus wagon and sideshow encampment.
Neuwirth recommends that visitors begin at the Reedsburg Area Chamber of Commerce which serves as Fermentation Fest headquarters and resource center. The Chamber’s knowledgeable staff provides expert guidance to the Fest and the surrounding area. Visitors will want to pick up a free Visitors Guide and purchase the comprehensive 2016 DTour Map that describes the artists and their installations, and other events and attractions along the route. Seasoned travelers may wish to purchase a DTour Passport to enhance their participation with value-added surprises. Proceeds from Passport sales support the Fest, which remains a free event. Maps are available at the Reedsburg Area Chamber of Commerce, and at the Chamber/Visitor Bureaus of Baraboo, Spring Green, and the River Arts Center in Sauk Prairie. Passport sales sites and extensive detail for advance planning are to be found the Fermentation Fest website.
Featured 2016 Fermentation Fest presenters include two best-selling authors whose work on fermentation is nationally acclaimed: The Fest opening week end presents Sandor Katz, a fermentation revivalist and do-it-yourself food activist whose books on fermentation techniques and recipes have earned him the moniker “Sandorkraut” and the James Beard Award for Reference and Scholarship. Katz will be special guest at the October 1st Fermentation Feast, and will host a fermentation Q and A session the following morning.
The second Fest weekend features Peter Reinhart, the three-time James Beard award-winning author of twelve books on baking and a fermentation-focused TED Talk reflecting on the couplings of wheat and yeast, starch and heat that produce our daily bread. Reinhart will present a class on food writing and will co-present baking classes – from bagels to gluten-free to rye sourdough and sprouted grains – with longtime Fest instructor Shawn Rediske of Water House Foods in Lake Mills, WI.
The second weekend will also feature Fermentation Fest’s third annual Mexican spirits dinner. Lou Bank of S.A.C.R.E.D., an organization that uses rare agave spirits like mezcal and raicilla to raise money to build libraries, run greenhouses, and maintain water projects in rural Mexico, will host the educational and gustatory event.
Fermentation Fest classes require advance online registration. Sessions range across 44 offerings from lacto-fermented vegetables to gluten-free baking to hands-on clay building your own steins and mugs, or making herbal beer.
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Fermentation Fest is an initiative of the Wormfarm Institute, a nonprofit organization that integrates culture and agriculture to build thriving communities. It collaborates with Sauk County U.W.-Extension, the Reedsburg Area Chamber Of Commerce, public partners and sponsors to host this live culture convergence celebrating abundance and transformation
About Wormfarm Institute
The Wormfarm Institute is a nonprofit organization in Reedsburg, Wis., working to build a sustainable future for agriculture and the arts by fostering links between people and the land. An evolving laboratory of arts and ecology, and fertile ground for creative work, the Wormfarm explores the links between urban and rural communities within and beyond the food chain, creating opportunities for cross-sector collaboration.