Welcome to August

Reflecting on this month’s packed calendar of events and on 10 years of content celebrating life in our nook of the Driftless Area, we can honestly exclaim what a marvelous journey it has been! 

Sara & Erik Flesch

During our tenure editing and publishing Voice of the River Valley, it has been our labor of love to seek out and package for your inspiration (and our own) art of all kinds, human profiles, history below and above ground, culture and nature, and opportunities for community conversations and support.

Voice of the River Valley was founded in 2006 by Mary Friedel-Hunt and her husband, Bill, to help the people of this region connect and support one another. Since we began curating these pages and carrying the torch forward in September 2012, readers have shared with us that Voice has been a lifeline, a medium through which they found community, connection and insight into the nature of our place. Voice has been that medium for us also in the decade that we’ve stewarded these pages, and this issue remembers each voice who brought this magazine to life.

This month’s cover art by Linda Kelen of Spring Green is a white-line wood block print titled “Mill Creek at Coon Rock Road … Where the Long Horns Weren’t.” Many thanks to Linda for sharing her creativity with us over the years! See more of her “artings” at lindakelen-artings.blogspot.com and follow her on Facebook.

We still believe what we wrote in May when we announced we’d be hitting pause after 10 years of publishing Voice — the miracle of this publication is You: You the contributor (writer, photographer, artist, poet), You the advertiser, You the volunteer distributor, You the subscriber, You the reader. We’re optimistic that there’s a You out there who is eager to take up the torch as editor or even publisher as we leave off printing Voice after this issue.

If you can’t imagine this nook of the Driftless Area without a magazine dedicated to the nature, culture, people and events that inspire, inform and enrich life in the Lower Wisconsin and Sugar-Pecatonica River Basins, please get in touch. Contact us at info@voiceoftherivervalley.com or call (608) 588-6251. We continue to be open to creative possibilities for Voice’s future, and will continue to maintain the Voice website including the monthly calendar of events and archives of past issues.

In the meantime, this month we invite you to enjoy the voices of Michael Brandt, Cecilia Farran, Erik Flesch, Sara Lomasz Flesch, Doris Green, John Heasley and Angus Mossman; photography by Rick Graves; and cover art by Linda Kelen. Join us in a walk down history lane by revisiting the 10 years of magazines that we’ve published.

Please consider doing business with this month’s advertisers (see p. 3), as well as those who have supported us these past 10 years and without whom these pages would not have been possible (see full list p. 4-5).

And please join us in thanking distribution volunteers Joy Gieseke, Joni and Rick Graves, Linda Kelen, Mark McCauley, Nick Schweitzer and Rountree Gallery volunteers. If you’re holding this month’s issue in your hands, it’s thanks to them.

Happy reading,

Sara and Erik Flesch