By: Brainerd Dispatch | Nov 13th 2019 - 12pm.
LITTLE FALLS -- Homegrown, handmade food and art become available each winter month at the Sprout markets in Little Falls, but in November and December, the Holiday spirit is in full swing. With more than 40 farmers, artisans and artists displaying their work, the market becomes a one stop gift shop for the whole family.
The Growers and Makers Holiday Markets will be open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 16, and Dec. 14 at Sprout. Sprout Growers and Makers Marketplace highlights regional arts through performances, cooking demonstrations and free art activities at each monthly market.
The November performance at 10 a.m. will feature St. Cloud musician, Nathan Neuman on accordion. While primarily polka, Neuman also plays old-time music, waltzes, two-step and country.
There will be free art activities for all ages at “The Happy Little Art Cart” with artist Tressa Hills. The mobile art studio was named after Bob Ross, American painter, art instructor, and television host of “The Joy of Painting” who famously called painting mistakes “happy little accidents,” a news release stated. Hills carried on this mindset of turning “mistakes” beautiful by hosting a painting party with her community to paint the outside mural on the studio.
Tressa is one of four artists engaged in Sprout’s À la cARTe Initiative that brings art experiences on the road to increase art access in rural Minnesota. The other artists include Lisa Jordan of Brainerd, Maria Ervasti of Staples and Heidi Jeub of Little Falls, will each have their mobile art studio at one of Sprout’s indoor winter markets throughout the season.
The community is invited to attend the market and enjoy free samples during the cooking demonstration which will showcase the culinary talents of Chef Mateo Mackbee of Model Citizen the Restaurant in New London. Mackbee holds the 2019 Master Chef award from the cooking competition MINCED: The Finer Version of Chopped. Sprout hosts MINCED annually, pitting three area chefs against each other and the timer to prepare a dish to impress the judges. Mackbee won over the judges in the dessert round with an Ethiopian pancake, bananas foster and berry sauce topping. Chef Jenna Brower Von Siebolds also be working in the Sprout kitchen the week of the market to host a Friendsgiving Cooking Class. The cooking class will run from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Thursday and will use locally sourced ingredients from Sprout Food Hub like Butternut Squash and Sweet Potatoes to create traditional Thanksgiving favorites with a twist. Cooking class tickets are $30 per person and can be purchased at www.sproutmn.com/kitchen#class.
Market attendees are encouraged to come to the event hungry, to taste the samples and to dine at the Cabin Fever “pop-up restaurant” that will have lunch, craft brews and wine available during the market. Local food and art producers interested in participating in the market can become a vendor by visiting www.sproutmn.com/vendors.