If you're not from South DakotaSchmeckfest may sound like a made-up term for some sort of wacky music festival. Lucky for us, we know Schmeckfest is a celebration of traditions that include food. Lots of delicious food, like--kuchen, noodle soup, bratwurst (Schmeckfest sausage), savory bierocks, and fried taters, to mention but a few.

Did I mention kuchen? In fact, 300 kuchen are sold and eaten every year at Schmeckfest!

Back in 1959, the Freeman Junior College Women's Auxiliary wanted to throw a 10th-anniversary commemoration, featuring traditional foods from the three Mennonite ethnic groups in the area, the Hutterish, Swiss, and Low Germans. Fittingly, they named it Schmeckfest, or "festival of tasting". They planned for 200 people and 1,000 showed up!

Schmeckfest has evolved into a fantastic fundraising festival with proceeds benefiting Freeman Academy. It still features some of the most delicious food around, and also, a musical, starring community members. It is about food, yes, but also fellowship, heritage, and community.

This year Schmeckfest is celebrating its 65th anniversary and if you haven't gone before there are a few things you should know. It is coming up in Freeman, on the Freeman Academy campus, on Friday and Saturday, March 24 and 25.

There are tons of activities in addition to the traditional buffet meal and theater production. This year it is the musical State Fair. The meal is served from 3:45 to 7 each night. 1,000 tickets are available for each meal, you must buy them in advance, and the sooner the better!

There are food and craft demonstrations, a quilt raffle, an art display, collector items, and t-shirts too. Last, but certainly not least, you can load up on your favorite Schmeckfest foods from the Country Kitchen like Peppernuts, pickles, cheese pockets, jams, jellies, of course, kuchen!


For additional information see Schmeckfest online or call 605-929-4716.

A Survival Guide For Your First Winter in South Dakota

Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and the rest of the Sioux Empire (AKA southeastern South Dakota) are welcoming thousands of new residents every year.

Many of you new folks will be experiencing your first eastern South Dakota winter. While it doesn't usually get as bad as our Dakota friends up north, I speak from experience when I say it can get a little rough.

So, to help ease you into winter in Sioux Falls and South Dakota here are some winter survival tips:


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