Door County Reads Dives Into Indigenous Culture, History

The start of February means another week of programming for Door County Reads (DCR), the Door County Library’s annual winter literary festival.

  • The focus of this year’s festival is Braiding Sweetgrass For Young Adults: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teaching of Plants. Written by Robin Wall Kimmerer, the book discusses how a more complete understanding of our place and purpose can result from acknowledging our reciprocal relationship with the earth.

In conjunction with DCR, Peninsula Players will present a play reading, The Nature Plays by Patrick Gabridge, at Björklunden on Feb. 5, 7 pm. The performance is a series of five short plays that were initially created and performed at Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Massachusetts, with each play centering on the rich natural environment of the area. The play reading has no admission fee, but donations are welcome. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. 

Björklunden is located at 7590 Boynton Lane in Baileys Harbor.

Sturgeon Bay Library’s Multicultural Book Club will discuss this year’s DCR book on Feb. 6, 1 pm. Participants and listeners are welcome. Zoom codes for the meetup are available on

The Sturgeon Bay Library is located at 107 S 4th Ave. in Sturgeon Bay.

The same day, Feb. 6 at 1:30 pm, at the Ridges Sanctuary, speaker Stephanie Dodge will weave together Indigenous knowledge and Western science during a lecture about the unique restoration efforts taking place at Wequiock Creek. Wequiock Creek is a local restoration project that uses a reciprocal approach to work with First Nations in the area, along with the Cofrin Center for Biodiversity and other stakeholders.

Stephanie Dodge. Photo by Dan Meinhardt from UW-Green Bay’s  website. 

A watch party for Dodge’s lecture will also be held at the Sturgeon Bay Library. The Zoom meeting ID is 876 3404 0397 and the passcode is 114018.

The Ridges Sanctuary is located at 8166 state Highway 57 in Baileys Harbor. 

  • Next up is two talks by Dr. Carol Cornelius, who will discuss her book, A History in Indigenous Voices: Menominee, Ho-Chunk, Oneida, Stockbridge, and Brothertown Interactions in the Removal Era on Feb. 7. The book compiles accounts of nation-to-nation treaties, why they were made and how the federal government’s unwillingness to acknowledge their legitimacy led to the further loss of Indigenous lands. 

The talk will be held twice on Feb. 7, once at 10-11 am at the Sturgeon Bay Library and again at 2-3 pm at the Sister Bay/Liberty Grove Library, 2323 Mill Rd. in Sister Bay.

Later that day at 5:30-6:30 pm, the Fish Creek Library will show PBS documentaries about the history of Wisconsin’s Potawatomi and Menominee tribes.

The Fish Creek Library is located at 4097 state Highway 42 in Fish Creek.

  • The last two DCR programs on Feb. 7 will take place at Baileys Harbor Library. The first is an art event 6-7 pm, during which participants can make quote art in connection with Braiding Sweetgrass For Young Adults. Immediately after this event, Baileys Book Club will meet to discuss the DCR book and Good Seeds: A Menominee Indian Food Memoir by Thomas Pecore Weso, at 7 pm.

Baileys Harbor Library is located at 2392 County Road F in Baileys Harbor.

Dodge will make another appearance on Feb. 8, 1-2 pm, this time at the Egg Harbor Library. There, she will discuss baskets, the designs within them that represent culture and ways of being and how Indigenous women passed on knowledge. 

A watch party for the lecture will also be held at the Sturgeon Bay Library. The Zoom meeting ID is 840 9544 4854 and the passcode is 985226.

The Egg Harbor Library is located at 7845 Church St. in Egg Harbor.