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  • Writer's pictureSecond Opinion Magazine

Green Pages » Jan./Feb. ‘13

New Co-op Develops in Durand

In April 2012, a group of individuals held a public meeting to gauge response and chose a steering committee to develop what would become Good Egg Food Co-op. This committee spent much time gathering information, wrote a mission statement, and decided what type of co-op model to utilize. Although the co-op is not officially open yet, that hasn’t stopped the growing excitement for the new organization.

Joe Casteberg currently serves as Secretary and Project Manager of Good Egg Food Co-op. “The Good Egg Food Co-op has numerous goals, almost entirely focused on helping out and further developing our local area,” Casteberg explained. “More importantly, the focus is to bring the best, healthiest, and most ethically-produced food possible to our community.”

Once the co-op officially opens, the committee hopes to have a free in-store library and information center, classes and workshops to assist with the mission. “We plan to do this not because it’s profitable, but because it is the right thing to do for our community,” Casteberg said.

Part of doing what is right for the community means allowing community members to become actively involved in the co-op. While people can purchase stock in the co-op, membership will also be offered to all of the co-op workers and producers. “We plan to have separate membership classes, with equivalent seats on the board, so everyone can and will have a stake and a say in our business,” Casteberg explained. Managing a co-op in this way is known as a ‘hybrid model’ or ‘multi-stakeholder model’, something the committee is proud to offer to the Durand-area community.

While it is not officially open yet, the co-op has already offered one very successful event to the community. The inaugural Farm to Table Dinner Event was held on October 6; the event was a huge success, as it was a way to sample one-of-a-kind local food produced by local farmers and businesses. The event, which raised over $4,000, will assist in the set-up of membership and stock programs in the coming months. Because of the event success in drawing attention to local food producers, organizers hope to offer another similar event in spring 2013.

Good Egg Food Co-op is interested in involving local people that want to promote buying locally, eating healthy foods, and developing a sense of community. To find out about upcoming events and ways you can become involved, please visit for more information. Click on the ‘Members’ or ‘Volunteers’ page to discover various committees and for information on how to contact volunteer coordinator Martha Gingras. Donations can also be mailed to Good Egg Food Co-op, P.O. Box 208, Durand, WI 54736.

“We encourage people to get involved now, and help our board of directors make the most important decisions they need to make before the store is opened,” Casteberg concluded.

Yoga Retreat in 2013!

Yogify in the Riviera Maya! Shambala Petit Hotel, Tulum, Mexico March 15-22 (6 spots available!)

Whether you’re new to yoga or have an established practice, this daily experience of yoga offers significant evolution for the body and the spirit. For 2+ hours a day we use tools of movement, breath and meditation to cultivate strength and centering. Then we take it off the mat into life! Yoga changes the way you do everything else.

Shambala Petit Hotel is a small, luxury resort that specializes in yoga retreats and offers clean, minimal decor and maximum hospitality. You’ll enjoy the warm blue waters of the Caribbean and magnificent Tulum Beach.

Cost range: $1,100 to $1,800 per person (double occupancy and depending on casita selection) for one week. Includes retreat tuition, 2+ hours of yoga each day, accommodation, three meals a day, a 45-minute Acupressure session with Dotty Bacon and an estimated $100 for ground transportation from Cancun International Airport. It does not include airfare. A $300 deposit is required to reserve your spot. If you have questions or need more information, please email

Peace, Love and Bananas

by Amy Annis, Madeline Island Yoga Retreats and Clean Spirit Yoga

I’m becoming a Gorilla.  Not the traditional dark and furry ape that roams the jungle but the yogic kind that roams the urban street of Eau Claire teaching yoga classes to support my community.

It’s not my original idea.  The Gorilla Yogis was the brainchild of Minneapolis Urban dwellers Jess Rosenberg and Nan Arundel who decided that their community would benefit from a monthly yoga class.  Not only would they create unity but they could potentially raise money for community partners.  They had no idea the beautiful ball of karma enclosed in their gorilla paws.

The first event was for the benefit of the Smile Network.  Half expecting 30 yogis to walk in, they taught to a crowd of over 200 raising enough funds to repair a cleft palate for a child.  The experience was exhilarating and they continued to use their talents to re-create fantastic monthly yoga events.  To date they have raised over 30,000 for community partners in the Twin Cities area.

When I called Jess to ask her for a bit of assistance, there wasn’t even a pause.  I had discussed the idea with a few of my favorite Eau Claire yogis, Kristin Polez from Drammen Yoga, Aveen Banich from Life By Design and Amelia Daniels and we were looking for some insight to avoid re-creating the yogic wheel.  Conducive to the true nature of most yogis, Jess didn’t hesitate when I suggested she shared her creative project with us.  “I will help you”, she said.

Thus, the Gorilla Yogis – Eau Claire chapter was established and with karmic ease  out yoga troop leaders have already met with a fantastic response.  Our first event is scheduled at The Children’s Museum in Eau Claire at 10 am on January 26th and 100% of the proceeds raised from that event will go to our community partner.

Life by Design … Come Home to Your Fabulous Self!

Life by Design is a space for many things — yoga, laughter yoga, life coaching, meditation, healing and reiki, design, and life celebrations. However, it was really envisioned as a place for community and connection for conversation and ideas, laughter and friendship, learning and exploring your soul’s purpose.

Conceived by a group of Chippewa Valley women, Life by Design is meant to be a little sanctuary of stillness and peace or a place filled with loud laughter and animated discussions. It all really depends on the day and what you are seeking.

On our sign and print materials, you will see a beautiful emerging butterfly. Richard Buckminster Fuller once said that “There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it is going to be a butterfly.” Do you ever feel like there is more to you than you are currently revealing to the world or even to yourself?

As women, we often put our own dreams and self-care on the back burner in order to take care of others. What dream or vision of your life’s purpose currently masquerades as a caterpillar? Perhaps you do not even know yet but have a desire to uncover it.

Through a wide variety of offerings, our dream at Life by Design is to empower and inspire you to explore these dreams and to enhance your well-being and natural awesomeness. Yeah we said it; you are naturally awesome! We all are and at Life by Design we intend to not let you forget it.

Lily Pad Lab

The Lily Pad Lab is excited to announce it will be opening its doors in Mid-January. What is the Lily Pad Lab?

A classroom – a place for kids, alongside their parents, to learn and grow through our stimulating, entertaining and educational, age appropriate classes

A play room – have a cup of coffee or tea, relax on a comfy couch, allow your child to explore all the Lab has to offer.

A community – an opportunity to meet new families and feel connected.

At the Lily Pad Lab our goal to inspire kids to explore the world around them; to capture the curiosity of young children, encourage them to hold on to it and let it guide them as they grow, all right alongside their parent or trusted adult.  Our February/March session of parent/child classes include Tiny Scientists, Art Lab, Lily Pad Test Kitchen, Spanish and Music, The Littlest Lab, and Winter Wiggles.

We will also have Open Lab time in which we will set up stations for kids and parents to explore together including science experiments, art projects, dramatic play, sensory play, etc.  We will also provide educational toys for kids to explore on their own developing a sense of independence and giving parents a chance to relax and observe.

We will also be hosting one-day Family Events, Baby Brunches, and seasonal celebrations.

It is never too early to introduce science vocabulary and concepts.  Science starts with understanding concepts that develop as early as infancy.  One of the first scientific processes is Observation which uses all the senses.  Young children explore the world using their senses.  They look, touch, smell, hear and taste.  All kids are curious and want to know everything about their environment!  Spend this precious time with your child as they explore, discover and develop an understanding for the world they live in!

To register or to find more details on Classes, Events and Open Lab time go to  Class sizes are small and they will fill up fast, so register early.

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