Late Summer 2010 – volume 8 issue 2

Editor: Madeline Johnson

Associate Editor: Sara Massey

Copy Editor: Allison Vroman

Photography Director: Dan Eggert

Artist: Nik Garvoille

Contributing Editors: Julia Chomeau, Myles Dannhausen Jr., Jacinda Duffin, Jennifer Klessig-Dupont, Dan Eggert, John Enigl Sr., Nik Garvoille, Gary Jones, Brittany Jordt, Roger Kuhns, Roy Lukes, Barbara Malcolm, Megan O’Meara, Melissa Ripp, Katie Lott Schnorr, Sally Slattery, Bonnie Spielman, Paul Wanish, Patty Williamson, Allison Vroman

Advertising Sales: Madeline Johnson, Bonnie Spielman, Steve Grutzmacher

Publisher: David Eliot

Owners: Madeline Johnson & David Eliot

Door County Living magazine is published five times annually by:

Door County Living, Inc.

P.O. Box 695, Baileys Harbor, WI 54202


We welcome your inquiries, comments, and submissions. E-mail us at: [email protected] or simply call us at (920) 839-2120.


For advertising rates and information, please e-mail us at: [email protected] or simply call us at (920) 839-2120.


Door County Living is available free of charge at select locations on the Door Peninsula.  Why not have it delivered directly to your door?  To order an annual subscription, please send $20.00 to Subscription – Door County Living, P.O. Box 695, Baileys Harbor, WI 54202.  To change your address or inquire about the status of your subscription, please contact us in writing at the address above, or by e-mail at: [email protected].

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In this issue

  • Good Old-Fashioned American Food

    I navigate my way over the glossy wooden floor, wearing my red Wilson’s t-shirt and khaki shorts, holding a tray of hamburger baskets above my head. A toddler bobs up and down by the neon-lit jukebox. American Pie by Don McLean plays from the speakers. A white-haired woman tells the cashier about her days as […]

  • Door County Local Salad

    With fresh salad greens available year round from Cherrydale Farms and mostly year round from Pat’s Patch, a leafy, local foundation can be used to build any salad. This version of the Italian bread salad (panzella) can be made local with crusty bread from Crusty Uprising. This salad features sweet and sour Montmorency dried cherries […]

  • Wild Tomato Brings Fine Ingredients to Pizza

    Most business deals that start with a bet don’t end happily ever after, but Sara and Britton Unkefer are beating the odds. Two years after purchasing iconic Digger’s restaurant in Fish Creek, the couple has transformed it into Wild Tomato Wood-Fired Pizza and Grille with a following as rich as the local ingredients used in […]

  • Fresh From the Farm

    Meg Goettelman recently discovered that her great-grandfather was a gardening fanatic. “Maybe it’s in my DNA,” says Meg, which could explain why she and her husband Adam launched a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) farm from their home in the Clay Banks area of Sturgeon Bay last summer. CSAs are a farming model in which community […]

  • A Maritime Forerunner: Past & Present

    2009 was the most successful year yet for Roen Salvage in Sturgeon Bay, and 2010 is looking up as well. Earlier this year, Roen received the Industry of the Year award from the Door County Economic Development Corporation in recognition of the company’s long-standing impact and accomplishments in the community. They also recently announced they […]

  • The Clearing Root Cellar Revived

    About a half mile off Highway 42 on Garrett Bay Road in Ellison Bay is the well-hidden driveway into The Clearing Folk School with a sign that says, “Student Entrance.” On weekend afternoons you’re welcome to turn in. You’ll be on a twisty, tree-shaded drive that forces you to slow down and enjoy the scenery. […]

  • A New Generation Tees It Up

    For you 30-something and older golfers out there, think back to your childhood golf experience. Did you even have one? Were you taught by one of your parents or were you just dropped off at the course to figure out the game on your own? Many of us can probably tell a different tale of […]

  • Man Vs. Pig at the Valmy Thresheree

        Perhaps the most popular event at the Valmy Thresheree weekend is the Pig Wrestling Competition. Each year, 15 to 20 teams in men’s and women’s divisions compete in a foot or two of mud for cash prizes. Teams have come from as far away as Iowa, Southern Indiana and Milwaukee for a shot. […]

  • Door County’s Garden Peninsula

    The Door Peninsula is well known for orchards and art galleries, for shorelines and parks, for fish boils and the performing arts. But less celebrated is the county’s identity as a garden peninsula. However, as the area’s public and private garden spaces continue to be featured on television and in magazines, and as more and […]

  • Freddie Kodanko, Door County's Polka King.

    The Polka King – A True Door County Character

    The late Freddie Kodanko (or Freddie K, as he is remembered around these parts) was a man who wore many hats:  potato farmer, spider dancer, crate builder, bean farmer, ballpark DJ, cat lover, among others. The hat I’ll always remember was a large, blue, puffy, jewel-studded crown. This crown was also accompanied by a long […]

  • Conducting an Orchestra…in Paradise

    Before I speak to Victor Yampolsky, Music Director of the Peninsula Music Festival (PMF), I get more than a little nervous. The questions that I’ve jotted down to ask him just seem so simple, especially for a man who in 2010 will celebrate 25 years as PMF’s Music Director – a post that he has […]

  • Refab Yourself

    “One should either be a work of art,” Oscar Wilde tells us, “or wear a work of art.” Perhaps not so difficult for a flamboyant, 20th Century playwright, but such pressure – such pressure! – for us modern day, more conventional folk. If you’ve found that lack of time, talent, or good taste (or some […]

  • Stirring Ideas Into Clay

    Warmth emanates from David and Jeanne Aurelius. Soft light and fresh air fills their studio and gallery and makes customers feel right at home. As part of their daily routine, they wake early in the morning and drink coffee out of one of their handmade mugs. Next, they walk their black lab a couple of […]

  • Wildlife of the Niagara Escarpment

    Wisconsin has cuesta (pronounced “kway-stah”) formed topography. A cuesta is a land elevation with a gentle slope on one side and a steep cliff on the other. Undoubtedly Wisconsin’s best known, understood and used cuesta is the entire landmass of Door County itself, stretching from the bay of Green Bay on the west to Lake […]

  • The Story in the Rocks

    It’s called the cliff, the Great Arch, or simply the ledge. It’s a 650-mile curve linear cliff exposure of up-ended Niagara Dolomite that stretches through eastern Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, arcs around the top of Lakes Michigan and Huron, and on through Niagara Falls. In geological circles it’s known as the Niagara Escarpment, and […]

  • Pottawatomie Lighthouse. Tim Sweet.

    A Prize Worth the Journey: Pottawatomie Lighthouse on Rock Island

    Imagine, if you can, a time nearly 200 years ago when Green Bay and Prairie du Chien were the only two major towns in Wisconsin. When the Erie Canal was completed in 1825, the already thriving shipping trade between Green Bay and cities on the eastern Great Lakes increased dramatically. Troubled by the number of […]