"Wisconsin-Happy Festival State", by Eve Phillips. My husband and I love to travel in the state of Wisconsin where we live and get great pictures on the way. My name is Laurie Kutil and photography has become a great passion of mine since 2010. One thing I have learned in researching each town before visiting it is that, "Every town has it's story". When I do uncover those stories by connecting with local residents, our experience becomes so much richer. In turn, sharing the stories with you brings me joy :)
Here is our summary of all the places we have been in 2019. I also wish to apologize for so few blog posts being written. Unfortunately, this also ties in with the fact we did not get to many places last year. We, especially Al, has had many more commitments on my days off that we could not go any place. I have spent the last 6 months trying to catch up on making the videos that will be going into as-yet unwritten posts. You can view these on our YouTube channel.
We still did have fun though, we did get back to some of the festivals we have not been to in a long time. That included Bald Eagle Days in Prairie du Sac in January. We are returning this year too.
We also returned to Woodstock for Groundhog Day on Feb 2nd. This is one of our Favorite festivals and the fact that the movie was filmed here makes it even better!
We also made it to Middleton’s Mustard Festival in August. Thanks again for all of you that saved your mustard bottles, they made a fabulous hat that I proudly wore!
In September we made our first visit to Weiner and Kraut Day in Waterloo in 7 years. The highlight of the festival is the Weiner Dog parade. See it here.
We also went to a festival new to us, the Sorghum Festival in Fall River, also in September. Sorgum is processed as an alternative sweetener that tastes like molasses.
We also got video of processing the sorghum to make the syrup. Similar to making maple syrup.
Education also took a front seat this year for both of us. In November/December Al went to Kick’s Unlimited for Karate. We have become friends with the many instructors there and I shared with them my old videos that I got of them over 10 years ago. I also got new video as well. Al tested for his Gold Belt on December 2nd and earned it! I learned a lot about the many forms done by all of the skill levels from white to black belt.
I took a class introducing me to resin art at Meant to Bead, my favorite beading store, located in Sun Prairie. Thanks Erin for teaching me a new skill, I have many resin projects in mind for 2020!
I made these pendants with extras to make later.
The weather was excellent this holiday season and we took advantage of all of the fun Holiday events that took place those three weeks. We enjoyed our 4th visit to see the Canadian Pacific Holiday Train. See video here.
We also enjoyed Sun Prairie’s fire truck parade, Baraboo’s Lighted Parade, Holiday fantasy in Lights in Madison. We also made it back to the Rotary Lights in Janesville, or first visit there since 2015. A great Holiday season!
One favorite highlight of 2019 is our continued partnership with the Fever River Puppeteers in Hazel Green. I have made a video of each of their shows since September 2018 to help preserve them. Chuck and Sandye Voight would love to see you! I look forward to our visits there!
This year looks quite exciting, as we are planning to spend a week in Door County in mid-July. This will be our first trip there since 2011 and we plan on seeing everything we can!
Happy New Year to everyone. Please share our blog and subscribe, thanks!
Upon entering the building, the smell of coffee and fresh-baked pastries on an early fall morning sets your stomach growling even if you had breakfast already 🙂
Barista Heidi was taking a batch of Cinnamon Rolls out of the oven at the time, yum! She gave us one with a thick layer of frosting, it was as good as it looked!
We also enjoyed cheesecake for our 2nd breakfast.
After we ate we looked around, the llama decor is EVERYWHERE, so cute! On the walls is llama art by local artists as well. This beautiful painting is by Landis Heitz.
In the back by the Children’s playroom is this piece by Marion Rose.
Let’s take a look at the playroom, looks like fun!
This is especially cute! The play table on the right, the llama appears to be sitting there with the kids. You see a stack of construction paper and crayons at the table too!
I thought they had the coolest light fixtures there in the main dining area. An industrial/steampunk design. They also made use of the popular Edison Style bulbs.
They even have knit Llama hats for sale for $25. So adorable!
If you notice on the right wall of the dining room, there is a guitar hanging up, generously on loan from Rick Francois. It’s there for patrons to use. You play a tune and receive $1 off of your order! I wish I knew how to play one!
Well, we had a great first visit here and plan on coming back soon for Open Mike or Pizza night. Be sure to pick up one or several gift cards. We did!
Come to the nicest and friendliest coffee shop in America!
When this summer began, I never expected our activities would bring us closer to the world of dog training. It also brought me a new friend, Kate Bucci. She is the owner of the KC-K9 Academy. She specializes in training, nutrition and more. One of her top programs is her Board and Train. It’s immersion training for your dog to learn discipline in a matter of days. Contact her on her website or call 608-206-6396.
Let’s start at the beginning, with the Madison Mallards Baseball games. We went to the opening season game on May 28. Kate brought both of her Border Collies, Colt, and his younger one-year-old brother. Kovu. They are three litters apart. Colt is four years old. It was our first time seeing Kovu at the game. We didn’t see him last year but he actually did his first bat retrieve at only 7 months old!
We are seated in Section 101 in the front row with a perfect view of the dugout and home plate, just beyond the net. Here is Kovu waiting for the signal to retrieve the bat.
Colt was just as excited, he did a little flip when getting the bat.
We were at three games where at least one of the dogs retrieved the bat. See the video here of their work!
This is from the summer of 2018.
They made the games extra special, and the bat boy didn’t mind sharing the duty with a couple of cute pups!
Midsummer brought us to the Wisconsin Brewing Company in Verona for Sunday Funday. This event was a fundraiser for the Capital K9s of Madison to get protective goggles for all of the police dogs.
Kate could not make it but Al and I could. It was a lot of fun to see so many dogs out on the patio.
The best part was the K9 demo, showcasing their skills.
There were not quite enough funds to get the Rex Specs. Kate then teamed up with Focused Dog Training and covered the remaining cost. The dogs were presented with their protective goggles on Sept 4th. Good job!
Photo by Madison Police
Pier Pups Dock Jumping
The Mallard games being over, we went to to see Kovu do his favorite sport, dock jumping into a pool. The company running this event is Pier Pups, and it was held in the parking lot of Petlicious Dog Bakery and Pet Spa. It was our first time going to one of these competitions and it was really fun!
Kovu won a 3rd place ribbon for his efforts. Such a good boy!
Photo by Kate Bucci
See the video of his 5 jumps at this event.
During the “Grab It” competition, Kovu must catch a toy in mid-air during the jump. Here is a shot I got of that.
Kovu did achieve winning his Dock Diving Title by September 15. Way to go!
Photo by Kate Bucci
We are so proud of Kovu’s achievement. I shared my video footage with her and she produced a video showcasing all of his jumps leading up to the title.
Kovu is not the only one with talent. See Colt do the Git Up Dance by Woody from Toy Story 4. So cute!
And this concludes our 2019 adventures with Colt and Kovu. We look forward to next summer!
We are always looking for a new way to celebrate our country’s birthday. This year, we went to The Mining and Rollo Jamison Museums to celebrate! This place has been on our bucket list for several years so we took this opportunity to go!
We arrived just before the museum opened. We did the mine tour first before it got more crowded. Join us on the tour, led by a young man named Garrison. It was sure fun! It was also much cooler inside the mine than outside and it felt good!
After the tour, we rode the mine train, join us!
There was just as much excitement going on inside of the museum building. The Music and Schoolroom had many working music machines of the late 19th and early 20th Century.
We heard a Regina music box, cylinder music boxes, mini-organs and such. Even a player piano. Hear and see them below!