African arts, drumming, dance, and storytelling filled the Sprout Growers & Makers Marketplace in March 2019. Many community members from Central Minnesota participated in dancing and drumming, as well as helping paint a three panel work by artist Valeria Evans.
Janette Yiran of Yiran African Arts & Designs talks with Sprout after organizing the performances at the Sprout Growers & Makers Marketplace as well as Fred Yiran African Arts Day 2019. Janette shares with us the legacy of her late husband, Fred Yiran, a master painter, instrumentalist, carver, sculptor, jewelry-maker, poet, singer, performance artist, and an arts and culture educator. Yiran’s legacy continues to expand knowledge and understanding of African arts and cultures today. For more information on Fred Yiran visit www.yiranarts.com.
Created by Dying to Film. This project is made possible by ArtPlace America’s National Creative Placemaking Fund, awarded to Region Five Development Commission.
Artistic Contributors to the March 2019 Growers & Makers Marketplace Included:
Buddy King studied Community Development at St. Cloud State University (SCSU) and is a playwright, percussionist, and teaching artist. As Unit Director for the Roosevelt Boys and Girls Club in St. Cloud, MN, Buddy is engaged in numerous youth arts initiatives in the community and through the Club.
Proskuneo Dance Ministry of Higher Ground Church was established in 2015. The name Proskuneo is from the Greek which means worship. The group is lead by choreographer Keshia Anderson King. This powerful dance expression pulls from a variety of dance forms including sign, mime, lyrical and African movements, to express the gospel through music and dance.
Debra Leigh is a dance artist and choreographer who has been creating dance in Central Minnesota since 1989 when she accepted the position as the Director of Dance at St. Cloud State University. Debra founded the Repertory Dance Theater and the Summer Dance Institute at SCSU, and the Multicultural Children’s Art Connection and the Full House Children’s Dance Company. Debra has choreographed for several shows at GREAT Theater in St. Cloud, including West Side Story, The Wiz, The Little Mermaid, Adams Family, Nunsense, and Ragtime. Debra earned her undergraduate degree at University of Missouri, Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance and a MFA from the University of Illinois, Champaign/Urbana in Dance Performance and Pedagogy. Debra was a Fulbright Scholar in Indonesia and has taught at the Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.
Janette Yiran is an educator and has a strong passion for community. She has been very dedicated to and engaged in enriching her community and many others over the years through her deep knowledge of symbolic African arts and tales. She loves sharing, and teaching African values through folktales, stories and symbols, to inspire and strengthen communities in our diverse and changing world. As Managing Director of Yiran African Arts and Designs, and the Fred Yiran Legacy Project, Janette is dedicated to the mission of Yiran Arts of connecting with the community by sharing Fred Yiran’s art work expanding the knowledge and understanding of African arts and culture.
Valeria Evans is a visual artist, born in Joliet Illinois in 1979 to Dorothy May Evans, a beautiful southern soulful gospel singer and community advocate. Being the youngest of five children, Valeria spent a lot of time in her imagination. "Since I can remember I have found freedom in the arts. To dance, sing, draw, decorate, stimulate the artistic growth of a peer, indulge in the beauty and or uniqueness of something or someone and to create has always fulfilled me in a way I can’t describe with words." Throughout her school career at SCSU, Valeria participated in the arts at every stage. As a mother of four, she has used the arts to broaden the minds of her children, their peers, and community. Valeria uses art to express herself and to create memorable moments for all who care to see. "After years of unknowingly limiting my artistic ability, I was blessed with an opportunity that opened my mind in many ways. It has ultimately unlocked my gift and shown me a level of potential that I never knew I had. I am blessed and extremely excited at every opportunity that presents itself because I see them with
new eyes and I experience a level of freedom that I for long lost. I find great pleasure in the sharing of my art and from the reactions of all who partake in it with me. I pray to touch the lives of everyone that I or my art comes in contact with. Thanks to everyone who supports my purpose, motivates my growth and shares my gift."
Danielle Daniels has a career that includes a wide variety of theater projects, storytelling programs, and workshops. Her tour shows, The Incarceration of Annie, and The Magic of Laughter, Spirit of Our Ancestors and Connecting through Stories, have been presented at the Southern Theater, Pillsbury House Theatre, Purdue University, Northwestern University, University of Louisville, Southern University, the Paramount Theater, St. Cloud, the University of Minnesota, and in Europe. She is the author of "Ghost of Old Man Willie", a children’s book. Danielle is a recipient of a LIN Grant, Minnesota State Arts Board Fellowship, Jerome Fellowship and Many Voices from the Playwrights’ Center. She has a B.A. degree in Communications from the University of Minnesota, and completed The Kennedy Performing Arts Center’s “Artists as Educator” program through Northern Iowa University. In addition to collecting and sharing stories, Danielle is a teaching artist, helping students of all ages find and develop their own creative voice and style.
Habso J. Mohamud is author of "It Only Takes One Yes!," a children’s book to inspire and ignite passions for positive change, no matter one’s age or background. A proud Somali American and first-generation graduate of St. Cloud State University, she holds a bachelor's degree in Geography Travel & Tourism and a masters in Global Education, Gender & Leadership Development. As a youth champion, social activist, and community advocate, she has traveled around the globe to speak on the importance of women and children’s education.
LITTLE FALLS, Minn. – July 1, 2019 – Sprout’s Third Annual Summer Harvest Dinner celebrates the tastes of local food growing this season and creates a platform where expert chefs showcase their gourmet cooking. Three of the five chefs featured at this year’s dinner competed at Sprout’s cooking contest, MINCED: The Finer Version of Chopped. At the Summer Harvest Dinner, the competition will be set aside so that local food can be the star of the show. The five-course meal will be held on Friday, July 26 at Sprout (609 13th Ave NE, Door 8, Little Falls, MN 56345). Each course is prepared by a different chef and features a local food producer who is invited to attend the dinner and speak on behalf of their growing operation.
The Summer Harvest Dinner event begins at 5:00 p.m. with cocktails, followed by a five-course meal of two appetizers, two entrees, and dessert. Each of the courses is paired with wine, selected by sommelier Scott Lindman of Paustis Wine Company. Lindman is also the host of the evening, entertaining the audience with his take on wine tasting education. The ingredients for the meal are sourced through Sprout’s Food Hub operation which works with a network of local growers to supply fresh local produce to schools, hospitals, co-ops, and restaurants. Local growers who supply their product for the Summer Harvest Dinner are invited to the dinner to enjoy the fruits of their labor and share stories of their work with their neighbors, how and why they produce their meat, produce, grains, and other products.
The expert chefs preparing the menu include all three competitors of the intense culinary cook-off, MINCED, that occurred just two months ago in May. The winner of the 2019 MINCED Master Chef title, Mateo Mackbee of Model Citizen the Restaurant (New London, Minn.) will be preparing an Entree for the Summer Harvest Dinner, while MINCED competitor Chef Thomas Kavanaugh, mentor to the Pillager High School ProStart Program will be preparing a dessert. Chef Jenna Brower Von Siebolds of Prairie Bay Grill (Baxter, Minn) who won the 2019 MINCED People’s Choice award says, “I can’t wait to be in the kitchen with Mateo and Thomas again, especially now that we don’t have to compete.” Chef Jenna will be preparing one of the two appetizers of the meal. “I’m planning on doing a new take on tapas, with six different appetizer bites on one plate,” she says.
Two chefs from Little Falls, Minn. will also be preparing a course at the 2019 Summer Harvest Dinner. Ron Lyschik of Zoomski's Midtown Cafe and Tomas Zimmerman of A.T. The Black & White Restaurant participated in the previous year’s dinner and will showcase new local producers in their course this year.
The community is invited to attend the meal by reserving tickets which are $60 per person and available online through www.sproutmn.com/harvestdinner. There is a limited number of tickets available and tickets must be reserved in advance.
This event is sponsored by Region Five Development Commission, ArtPlaceAmerica, and Prairie Bay Grill.
The Summer Harvest Dinner is supported by a grant awarded to Region Five Development Commission by ArtPlace America’s National Creative Placemaking Fund. The ArtPlace funds are providing Sprout and partners the support needed to host an expansion of economic opportunities, social and cultural experiences, and learning for local growers, artists, makers, producers, chefs, and the public. Sprout and partners will also build out the Marketplace's physical space over the next three years using commissioned functional art from local artists, with priority granted to Latino, East African, Native American, Amish, grower, and youth communities.
The community is invited to shop the Sprout Growers & Makers Marketplace vendors selling local food and art on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on October 26, November 16, and December 14. In the months of July, August, and September, Sprout hosts cooking classes, fundraising events, and educational opportunities for growers, makers, and artists. Interested growers, artists, chefs, community members, and educators who want to learn more, visit www.SproutMN.com and follow Sprout MN on Facebook.
When is dinner more than just dinner? When stories are told. And connections made.
That's the premise of a new documentary, which focuses on the stories of immigrants and other minorities living in the small towns and rural areas of central Minnesota. "Who's At your Table?" brings together people of widely varying experiences to share a family-style meal and tell their stories - Where they came from, how their cultures shaped them, and how they find life and acceptance in Minnesota.
A big thank you to Sprout MN and Arlene Jones for hosting and facilitating. Also, a big thank you to Region Five Development Commission and ArtPlace provided funding, along with assistance from Lakeland Public Broadcasting for giving us a place to share this piece.
À la cARTe Initiative: Putting food and art on the menu through artist-led interactive activities on the road.
Sprout MN is facilitating a cohort of artists to enhance the Mobile Market shopping experience, as well as various community events, using portable artist studios. These portable studios or art carts will be used to engage the community through art and food, with an end goal of lasting healthy behavior changes that support physical and mental wellbeing.
The geographic territory of this project are the five Central Minnesota counties of Crow Wing, Cass, Morrison, Todd and Wadena. The four (4) artists engaged in this project are from Brainerd, Staples, Little Falls, and Otsego.
Request for Proposals – Scope of Work
Expectations of time and deliverables:
The overall objective is to capture the story of the creation and implementation of each of the four artists’ carts through high resolution imagery and video. The majority of photography and videography will take place at the artist’s residence / art cart build sites and community events. The project assumes 17 hours of travel within the three-month project period in order to capture on location.
1. Photography - Capture 5 high resolution images per artist during the creation phase. Capture 5 high resolution images per artist during the implementation phase. Photos should be edited and “publish ready” upon final submission to Sprout.
2. Video - Capture and edit video footage into the following deliverables:
Total budget is $5,000. The videographer / photographer can determine how the funds are used to support the deliverables of the project in consultation with Sprout MN. It is estimated that no more than $1,210 would be used to reimburse the videographer / photographer for travel time and mileage, leaving $3,790 to compensate the videographer / photographer for the actual capturing of video / photo and editing.
You will receive a confirmation email within 24 hours of sending your application. If you do not receive a confirmation email after 24 hours of submission, please contact Natalie Keane, email@example.com, 712-899-2268.
Announcement of selected videographer will be made by June 20th, 2019.
Applicants must be 18 years of age or older, residing in Cass, Crow Wing, Morrison, Todd, or Wadena counties or within a 100-mile radius of Sprout MN in Little Falls.
Natalie Keane, firstname.lastname@example.org, 712-899-2268
About Sprout and the Mobile Market
Sprout’s mission is to promote the health, economy and self-reliance of Central Minnesota by facilitating the availability of fresh, locally produced food in the region.
The Sprout Mobile Market is a new pilot project that seeks: (1) to increase food accessibility and affordability, creating new retail food access points, and; (2) to integrate local foods, art and culture that bridges cultural gaps, provides significant economic opportunities for growers and artists and support community engagement opportunities.
Visit www.sproutmn.com and www.facebook.com/SproutMN8 to learn more about Sprout MN.
The Sew & Grow program has been in existence since 2010, when it was first a program of the Multicultural Center of Central Minnesota. Today, the program is operated by the African Women’s Alliance, bringing women together to learn, teach, and create sewing projects. The women of the Sew & Grow group reside throughout the Greater St. Cloud area and have origins in Liberia, Uganda, Sudan, Kenya, among other East and West African countries. The sewing skill level of each of the women varies from beginner to advanced, and many women volunteer to teach new skills at each class. Some projects include a simple dress or hijab, crib sheet, table centerpiece, curtains, pincushion, and general garment mending.
The collaboration with Sprout MN presented an opportunity for an artist-led, multi-medium project using fabric to create a journey from skill building to art installation. Using a combination of Skillshare, Design/Idea Generation, and Creation, the project offered workshops in fabric dyeing, weaving, and binding to create the materials used in the ultimate art installation which hangs from the ceiling of the Sprout facility in Little Falls, Minnesota. As a former boat manufacturing facility and industrial warehouse, the need for color and movement in space was achieved by using different fabrics, fabrics of different colors and cuts, and structural elements through with weaving and woodwork. The use of wire and ribbon in the weavings further enhanced the impression of movement of the piece.
Read more about the Sew & Grow project in the report below.
This project was led by artists Jeri Olson-McCoy, Lucy Senstad, Heidi Jeub, Natalie Keane, Anthony Schrock, & 25 other participant artists.
Sponsored by Region Five Development Commission (R5DC) and ArtPlace America.
Video by Dying to Film. Recipes by Jenna Brower Von Siebolds.
Chef Jenna from Prairie Bay Grill prepares a special menu to show how tomatoes can be used in a variety of cultural dishes. What's on the menu? Click each dish below to get the recipe!
PICKLED TOMATOES - RUSSIAN
PEBRE CON YUZU HALIBUT - CHILEAN
CAPRESE SALAD - ITALIAN
SHAKSHOUKA - NORTH AFRICAN
When we share a meal together, we share our stories. Who's at your table? Share your story with us here!
Sponsored by Region Five Development Commission and ArtPlaceAmerica.
PICKLED TOMATOES - RUSSIAN
PEBRE - CHILEAN
CAPRESE SALAD - ITALIAN
SHAKSHOUKA - NORTH AFRICAN
We're calling all regional artists to create the graphic design that will wrap around the Sprout Mobile Market vehicle. The goal of the design is to beautify the vehicle and make it stand out on its pop-up grocery stops so shoppers get excited about local food and art. The Sprout Mobile Market Graphic Design Contest launched March 1, 2019 and ends at 11:59pm on March 31, 2019 (the “contest period”). All eligible submissions must be received or posted by no later than 11:59pm CDT on March 31, 2019 in order to be considered for the contest.
The contest is open to all residents of Cass, Crow Wing, Morrison, Todd and Wadena counties, and residents within 100 miles of Little Falls.
The selected artist wins a $1,000 prize: $800 Cash + $200 Marketplace Bucks + Your Design on the Mobile Market.
Eligible individuals may enter the contest by creating a design for Sprout’s new Mobile Market vehicle in digital format and posting it on the individual’s Facebook or Instagram pages. Entries must be “public” and must include hashtags #SproutMobileMarket, #SproutDesign, so we can find it when reviewing submissions.
View the Official Rules, Requirements, and Restrictions on Submissions. View the vehicle specs here.
Stay posted on our Facebook page for contest updates and to vote on the submissions.
Read the full story about the arrival of the Mobile Market vehicle here.
Leech Lake Early Childhood has been making many strides to revitalize language and indigenous foods. Ryan White Photography & Design, a Leech Lake local company, captures these budding initiatives in a powerful and artistic manner to show the strength within the Leech Lake communities. Using a combined skill set White beautifully weaves together the many parts of this cultural and community revitalization movement.
For more information about Ryan White Photography & Design or the Leech Lake Early Childhood please see the following links: facebook.com/RyanWhitesPhotographyDesign
Leech Lake Early Childhood Development:
Aabinoojii Oshkii Bimadiziiwin Center (AOB)
The creative commissioned projects showcased in the video engaged five local artists:
Sharon Nordrum: Sharon is an experienced artist that started painting in 2012. Her inspiration comes from her dreams, her Ojibwe heritage, language, and stories and the natural world. Her work is filled with traditional Ojibwe symbolism. She is active in the communities of northern Minnesota and they range from art projects, youth work and radio shows. She has been a member of the Indigenous Foods Experts’ committee which keyed the foods highlight in AOB’s Farm to Early Care initiative and has been a key piece to its success in the classroom and in the kitchen. For this project, she created the traditional floral designs with needle felt work and taught of how we use our surroundings in our art and how they connect to tell a story.
Lolly Aguilar: Lolly is an experienced artist and has offered various classes with women teaching them different techniques and teachings that go along with her art as well as teaching involving the Three Sisters. She is a lover of mandaamin (corn) and reaches beyond central Minnesota to become known as “the corn lady” in the tribal communities of Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan. She has been gifted many beautiful corn seeds, teachings and stories from all across Turtle Island and Mexico. One of the teachings she highlighted during this project is how to make the traditional corn husk dolls and the teachings of mandaamin and the Three Sisters. She created a beautiful corn husk doll that is now displayed at Sprout.
Wesley Mays: Wesley is an experienced artist whose art gained popularity in 2011 and later evolved into authentic Native American Wearable Art. He views his art as a positive image for ourselves and has provided a positive influence and a positive example with the words and images he shares with everyone he comes into contact with. His art and his businesses help him raise American Indian people up, increase self-esteem, and increase pride in one self. Wesley created a collaborative canvased painting with some of the youth and families that are part of the Leech Lake Early Childhood program. This provided a more modern take on indigenous paintings and highlighted the importance of those teachings and the impact of community.
Ryan White: Ryan is an experienced artist with 5 years of professional photography. He currently works with the Leech Lake Tribal College (LLTC) as their Multimedia & Marketing Specialist and also does professional photography outside the LLTC and at several community events. He has captured amazing photos from different cultural events and the community of Leech Lake as a whole. He documented the various teachings through photographs and video and compiled them to create the video above. This highlights the intergenerational transfer of knowledge and skills in Indigenous culture as a whole and the methods and the meanings of their stories told through their art.
David Northbird: Dave is currently the Director of Operations of the Boys and Girls Club of the Leech Lake Area. Dave is a life long learner of Anishinaabe song and dance culture. Dave has instructed drum teachings in the Leech Lake area for 20 years in the Cass Lake-Bena School District, Boys and Girls Club, and Leech Lake Tribal College. Drum making is an important part of a singers development so learning how to construct ones owe drum provides a high level of respect for his/her drum.
This project was facilitated by Claire Chase, Leech Lake Area SNAP-Ed Coordinator.