Tis the season to be jolly; albeit while practicing social distancing and following the guidelines for gatherings. Christmas will be different this year. As we are working on this issue, the rapid spread of covid is cause for alarm on both sides of the border. It appears most of us will be making merry with only the immediate members of our household. On the bright side, lots of folks can breathe a sigh of sweet relief—office Christmas parties will be cancelled!
We’ve included some Christmas cheer in this issue. Four of our favorite writers, Eric Chandler, Elle Andra-Warner, Shelby Lonne-Rogentine and Gord Ellis, share their favorite family holiday traditions. Breana Roy has complied a collection of holiday-themed art. Rae Poynter catches up with Norwegian rosemaling expert Mary Schliep. Talking to barkeeps from Duluth to Thunder Bay, Chuck Viren provides a selection of holiday cocktails. Spanning the centuries, Elle Andra-Warner delves into the history of Christmas carols.
December is also when lake freighters hug the North Shore to stay in the lee of the prevailing northwest winds, creating some the year’s best ship-viewing. Eric Chandler discovered that even though he’d toured an ore boat as a child, he really didn’t know anything about them. Now he does and, if you read his story, so will you. New (and expecting) mother Ali Juten has found lots of ways to share her love of the outdoors with her 16-month-old daughter. Another mom, Erin Altemus, is facing a challenging winter as she combines work, motherhood, mushing and caring for her husband Matt as he recovers from a health emergency. Exploring her family heritage, Julia Prinselaar teaches us about once common cuts of meat that have fallen out of favor, such as beef tongue. Gord Ellis reflects on how the extraordinary year of 2020 affected the world of fishing. Sam Zimmerman teaches us about the jingle dress with a lovely new painting.
Since most of us will be sticking close to home this month, you’ll probably have plenty of time for reading. We’ve packed this issue of Northern Wilds with lots of good stories just for you. We appreciate the kind remarks and encouragement that we receive from our readers. We are thankful as well for our many advertisers whose support allows us to produce Northern Wilds magazine for you. Enjoy the holidays and take heart. A new year is just ahead.—Shawn Perich and Amber Pratt
The latest issue for December 2020 is out!
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