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Sad Day in Lefse Land

This is the kind of person who attends Potato Days in Barnesville, Minnesota—and a big reason why I open my lefse season there each August … except this season. Again.

Yesterday was a sad day. I finished cancelling all my lefse-related speaking gigs and selling events that I had scheduled for late August and the fall. Covid.

Kate, my daughter, just came home from three weeks in the hospital, mostly in intensive care with Covid. She has harrowing tales of not being able to catch her breath for days on end, not eating, not sleeping. Alone. Dark days of wondering if this was to be her time and if so, whom she would seek first in heaven. She says she felt our prayers.

She’s much better, looks great, and has some of her normal energy and all of her humor back. But she still needs an oxygen boost now and then and has hand tremors, which mess up her writing and her plans to return to her work as a chef. But she’ll make it back.

This sobering experience in our family and the Delta variant — which is nearly twice as contagious as previous variants and just as contagious as chickenpox — that is causing case numbers and hospitalizations to increase has led to my decision to not speak at an indoor event in New Ulm, MN, and not be a vendor at Potato Days, one of my favorite outdoor festivals in Barnesville, MN. This will be the second straight year of not selling at Potato Days as well as at the big Scandinavian festival, the Norsk Hostfest in Minot, ND, which cancelled for the second year in a row because of Covid.

Like many, I had high hopes for things opening up. But Kate’s episode, the Delta variant, the varying vaccination rates, the breakthrough cases, etc., have all caused me to decide to miss another lefse season of meeting other lefse lovers, yakking and yukking it up in person (see image above).

Turn the Page

So that was my yesterday, a sad day. Today, while I am again going into a near shutdown mode, I hope this time is shorter than the first. I certainly will not sit out the lefse season. I will still sell a rather large inventory of new lefse-related products on, mask up and make lefse for sale locally and for overnight shipping, as well as hold online lefse classes again this season.

Talk about making lemonade from lemons! My Zoom classes last year were flat out fun because I could continue to teach people the grand old tradition of making good lefse, and I could teach them anywhere in the world. Indeed, some families used the class as a safe replacement to their annual lefse fest, and one family pulled in family members from here and there in the United States as well as in Afghanistan and Singapore. Very cool!

So let the online lefse classes begin! Let me know and I will teach just you or you and your 11 cousins. The idea is to learn to make lefse and keep on rolling!

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