These are the days to inhale, dense with storied moments of warmth, beauty and freedom. On land, herbaceous aromas of prairie forbs, grasses and garden flowers are framed with the wafting savory fragrance of smoking grills, bonfires and barnyards out back. On the water, tropical notes of sunscreen intermingle with scents of evergreen, forest floor, minerality and perspiration. Making olfactory memories of peace and hope is the subject of this month’s p. 5 feature, as a family harvests lavender and cherries on their Baraboo farm.
The theme of optimism and love resonates with us on a personal level as 12 years ago this month Voice of the River Valley was born with the purpose of uniting the creative communities of southwestern Wisconsin along the Lower Wisconsin River and beyond. Since picking up in 2012 where founders Mary Friedel-Hunt and her late husband, Bill, left off, we’ve marveled as this all-volunteer magazine has grown in size and coverage and distribution areas — thanks to the support of contributors, advertisers, distributors, subscribers and the participation of our readers.
In honor of this milestone year, we have refreshed the design of these pages. We strive to bring the joy of discovery and affection for this nook of the Driftless Area to the pages — both in content and presentation. Perhaps the most noteworthy evolution is the magazine’s cover, with its larger image field and updated masthead. Liberated from a list of placenames, the restated coverage area embraces the spirit of a region defined not only by its upland ridgetops, but by the waterways and waters that sculpted the landforms we call home and connect us with the flow of people and ideas.
Breathe in with us as we celebrate the magical experience of summer and try to capture them in a jar — and in these pages. Happy reading,