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Harvest on Big Rice Lake

From: The Kitchen Sisters
Series: Hidden Kitchens
Length: 07:51

Each fall, the Ojibwa tribes of northern Minnesota harvest wild rice by hand. It's a long process that brings families in canoes into tall lake grasses. We journey to the rice lakes of White Earth Reservation to see how one tribe is using its traditions to support its people.

Ricing05_small Story Notes We saw Winona LaDuke and Margaret Smith speak at the International Slow Food Congress, where their group, the White Earth Land Recovery Project, was recognized for its work to preserve wild rice and restore local food systems on the reservation. They were inspiring and intriguing. We told Winona about the Hidden Kitchens project, and she told us to come for the reservation's wild rice harvest in August. So we did. Through its Native Harvest label, WELRP produces and sells an array of traditional foods -- wild rice, chokecherry jelly, raspberry preserves, fry bread mix, buffalo sausage, hominy and a selection of beautiful handmade crafts. Healthy foods support a healthy community. Visit Native Harvest online to learn more and help support them by enjoying their traditional foods and crafts. Heritage Foods USA is working to expand the markets for and increase the revenues of native groups throughout the country, including Native Harvest in northern Minnesota. Through thoughtful globalization, these endangered foods and stories can be saved. -- The Kitchen Sisters Special thanks to: Winona LaDuke; Ron Chilton; Pat Wichern; Sarah Alexander; Ed Barnett; Florence Goodman; Paul Schultz of Native Radio; Aaron Price; Becky Niemi; Pat Wichern; the team at the ricing shed; Native Harvest and the White Earth Land Recovery Project. About the Music This story features the song "One Piece at a Time," from the album The Many Sides of Johnny Cash.

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Piece Description

Story Notes We saw Winona LaDuke and Margaret Smith speak at the International Slow Food Congress, where their group, the White Earth Land Recovery Project, was recognized for its work to preserve wild rice and restore local food systems on the reservation. They were inspiring and intriguing. We told Winona about the Hidden Kitchens project, and she told us to come for the reservation's wild rice harvest in August. So we did. Through its Native Harvest label, WELRP produces and sells an array of traditional foods -- wild rice, chokecherry jelly, raspberry preserves, fry bread mix, buffalo sausage, hominy and a selection of beautiful handmade crafts. Healthy foods support a healthy community. Visit Native Harvest online to learn more and help support them by enjoying their traditional foods and crafts. Heritage Foods USA is working to expand the markets for and increase the revenues of native groups throughout the country, including Native Harvest in northern Minnesota. Through thoughtful globalization, these endangered foods and stories can be saved. -- The Kitchen Sisters Special thanks to: Winona LaDuke; Ron Chilton; Pat Wichern; Sarah Alexander; Ed Barnett; Florence Goodman; Paul Schultz of Native Radio; Aaron Price; Becky Niemi; Pat Wichern; the team at the ricing shed; Native Harvest and the White Earth Land Recovery Project. About the Music This story features the song "One Piece at a Time," from the album The Many Sides of Johnny Cash.

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Review of Harvest on Big Rice Lake

Visually appealing! Pricks all five senses.

Who would have thought that a story about harvesting wild rice would be so interesting?

I had read previous stories about the Ojibwa tribes harvesting the rice by hand... the old fashioned way. But this piece brought the story alive.

Often times radio pieces include gratutious ambient sound and you just accept it as part of the formula. It's there and then it's gone.

But the producers of this audio postcard wove through the sounds so beautifully that it never once distracted from the story or made me wonder, "what was that?"

This is what storytelling.. for any medium... is all about.