April 29th, 2012 by Nancy Sandstrom
As I was doing my normal wandering through a number of sustainable food-related blogs this morning, I came upon a blog written by Terra Wellington on The Buzz – Fresh News, Musings and Insights from Stoneyfield Farm. In “How to Bring Soul to Your Food” Terra relates beautifully how food is her connection to history, memories and community. Sharing this blog post is a joy as it conveys so well a philosophy behind how Steve and I attempt to build our breakfast (as well as many of our own meals) here at Pinehurst Inn.
The sourcing and discovery of new and locally grown ingredients is such an adventure. The incorporation of new discoveries not only elicits memories from years past, but also connects us to both nature and local Bayfield area growers in a way that adds incredible richness to the process. Bringing a yummy breakfast to the guests’ table is a primary goal. Yet we’d like to take that a bit deeper. If they want to know, we share where that food came from and some of the stories behind it – the people, the place, the natural history.
Yesterday Steve and our 4-year-old grandson, Aidyn trekked down to Pikes Creek just below Pinehurst Inn. Aidyn had just purchased a periscope and it was time to do some exploring. During this trek, they came upon a wonderful stash of fiddlehead ferns and wild leeks (ramps). After more adventure seeking, a few small bags of these incredible greens landed in the kitchen. An opportunity for research and some cooking. Steve created a wonderful tart with an Almond Flour Crust, mixture of fiddlehead ferns and wild leeks, parmesan cheese. Yum. An incredible dinner.
As we ate, he also shared the natural story – only found in the early spring in wet brackish forests. Each spring when the snow melts, the ferns push their way up through the forest floor, uncurling slowly. It’s at this moment just before they uncurl that they are harvested. Tender and with a taste that is reminiscent of a cross between a green bean and asparagus. How blessed we are that these short lived treats are right outside our door, creating a new seasonal food tradition.
And yes, we went ahead and created another tart for breakfast for our guests. They were happy and loved sharing similar food stories.
So over the coming months, periodically we will post some of the ways we attempt to bring “soul to our breakfasts”. How about you? Do you try to bring soul to your food?
April 24th, 2012 by Nancy Sandstrom
The spring and summer activities available in Bayfield are endless. But we have identified the most popular on-the-water activities for our guests and created packages to select from. Get on the water on a sail boat or a kayak – both great adventures in the Apostle Islands.
Each package is priced and booked separately.
Pinehurst Inn & Dreamcatcher Sailing Package
Enjoy a two night Bayfield stay with all Pinehurst Inn amenities plus the Dreamcatcher Afternoon Sail for two people – a perfect way to get a sense of the Apostle Islands. This 2 hour + outing will give a great taste of sailing. Boat leaves from Bayfield or Cornucopia. Throw in a complimentary bottle of wine compliments of Pinehurst Inn and you’ve got a package!
- two nights lodging (including full breakfast
- Dreamcatcher Afternoon Sail for 2 people
- Complimentary bottle of wine
- All other Pinehurst Inn amenities
Rates range from $374 – $584 (includes everything except room and sales tax). Call 877-499-7651 or book online.
Pinehurst Inn & Living Adventure Kayaking Package
This two night package offers lodging in combination with the Living Adventures full day Sea Caves Trip for 2 (includes lunch). Explore the Mainland Sea Caves with views of a number of the Apostle Islands. Enjoy your complimentary bottle of wine at the end of your day. This package includes:
- Two nights lodging (including full breakfast
- Living Adventures Sea Caves Trip for 2 (includes lunch)
- Complimentary wine
- All other Pinehurst Inn amenities
Rates range from $447 – $637 (includes everything except room and sales tax for lodging). Call 877-499-7951 or book online. This package will end the first week in September.
March 29th, 2012 by Nancy Sandstrom
The early spring provides a great opportunity for golfers to get out onto their favorite courses and begin their golf season in Bayfield, Wisocnsin. Apostle Highlands Golf Course announced their season is starting on March 31st. An early start? Why not!?
Amazing views of Lake Superior and the Apostle Islands provide the backdrop to this golfing experience. Many of our Pinehurst Inn guests have commented on the course, with some indicating the views often were distracting to their game! But they hung in there and came away from the 18-hole, par 72 course with a smile on their face.
Apostle Highlands is also another Travel Green Certified Bayfield business – once again, another example of area businesses recognizing how important their business practices are to the long term sustainability of the region.
The clubhouse also provides wonderful spot to relax after your outing on the course. Beautiful setting, amazing views, good people. Come and enjoy some golfing in Bayfield!
March 23rd, 2012 by Nancy Sandstrom
One of the best things about running this type of business is having those little snipets of recognition through articles and mentions. This week saw the fruits of an article in Edible Madison written by Jessica Luhning. Jessica and photographer, Jim Klousia stayed here at Pinehurst Inn in Bayfield this past January. They had arranged to come with the hopes of an article that focused on our local foods philosophy along as well as that of Good Thyme Restaurant. We had a great time with these two, and are so pleased to share the resulting article, Authentic Bayfield Peninsula.
As I read this piece for the first time, I kept thinking, “Ah, she got it!” Jessica has been successful in conveying not only our philosophy, but also that of the Bayfield, Wisconsin region. We are a buy local mecca! Over the past few years, we’ve worked hard to source terrific local growers, producers, service providers and more. Whether we are talking eggs or paint, bacon or toilet paper, we consistently work to find either a local entity that produces the product or is able to source it for us. Jessica understood and honored this in the article.
Here is the exciting part of our story. What we are hearing more and more from our guests is that our local foods and purchasing efforts are really one of the features of our business they find the most appealing. So cool — we can enhance their Pinehurst Inn experience by supporting the local economy. Of course along with the good eats come the stories behind the food. The multi-generational work by the Dale family at Highland Valley Farm. The start-up goat cheese produced by a wonderful goat farmer in Cornicopia, Sassy Nanny Cheese. The weekly deliver of eggs from Angel Acres Farm when we hear the trials and tribulations of egg farming. Or Tom Galazen’s North Wind Farm that grows some of the best berries ever – Tom’s our favorite resident hippie living off the grid with an incredible knowledge of farming. This is just a tinny “taste” of our local foods community.
Of course we always invite folks to come on up to Pinehurst Inn, enjoy our breakfast offerings and connected stories, as well at all that this area has to offer. But in the meantime, check out what’s available in your own area. To get you started, check out the Local Harvest website – Farmer’s Markets and CSA’s from all over the country are simply waiting to connect.
March 19th, 2012 by Nancy Sandstrom
Well, temperature records are being broken in Bayfield and all over the north land. Just a couple of weeks ago we were digging ourselves out from under a few feet of heavy wet snow at Pinehurst Inn, and just yesterday we were hiking the Mt. Ashwabay sugar bush trail in 78 degrees wiping sweat from our brows. It goes without saying this has been a strange Bayfield winter. I don’t recall a St. Patrick’s Day where I was able to spend the entire evening outside without a jacket – which is exactly what I did. On Saturday morning some friends of mine saw some kids jumping off of a dock on Madeline Island into Lake Superior! Granted, they weren’t staying in the water, they were wearing swimsuits and jumping in the lake in March! These beautiful days certainly do seem a blessing. Just watching the world turn from sloppy whites, browns and greys to splashes of blue and green here and there. These are the days when we look forward to the extra special aspects of living in Bayfield. Before we know it there will be strawberries, raspberries and blueberries filling our bellies. That certainly would have tasted wonderful yesterday!
While it also makes you wonder… are these early warm days really a good thing? Days like these also seem to raise the subject of global warming. Just in the month of March alone (only 19 days in) there have been 805 record high temps throughout the US (*thinkprogress.org). This truly is a double edged sword. Many of us are incredibly concerned about the environment and why these things are happening, yet we also find ourselves outside feeling so very grateful for these warm days so early in the season.
Here are the real questions though. Are we going to be surprised by that mid-April blizzard? Is it really time to put the shovels and snowblowers away? I certainly haven’t. Living on Lake Superior you never know what Mother Nature is going to decide to do.
We can only wait and see…
March 14th, 2012 by Nancy Sandstrom
Conditions here in Bayfield, WI are a bit schizophrenic …. a few weeks ago Pinehurst Inn guests were enjoying terrific XC ski conditions (and returning to Pinehurst Inn for a sauna!). Last weekend we had guests jostling between rain and sun and still getting out to have fun on wet trails (returning to Pinehurst Inn for a sauna!). This weekend we’re intending to tell our guests to bring their hiking boots (and look forward to a wonderful Pinehurst Inn sauna!).
Yes, it’s unusually warm everywhere in the Midwest right now. The temps are in the high 60′s. I just returned from town where I ran into one of our favorite kayak dealers in town – he was loading kayak and gear into his car, heading out for his first 2012 paddle! This isn’t something we recommend to our guests in March! There are chunks of ice floating all around the bay – and yes, the water is cold!
We’re all enjoying it tremendously, but I know I am also a bit on edge. Either we have one more major snow storm brewing in the future or this is global warming. Either way, the sun feels glorious. Much of the ice is off the lake and we’re seeing sparkling blue water.
So what’s the point? If relaxation and outdoor adventure is the goal, Pinehurst Inn and Bayfield can be an ideal destination, no matter what the weather! Hiking? It’s wonderful in the spring. Biking – right now it would be amazing. Snowshoeing – there are still some places you will find snow. Sitting on a beach – yup, we can point you in the right direction. And no matter what you choose to do to provide adventure, you can come back to your accomodations at Pinehurst Inn and truly relax.
Let us help you create your style of adventure!
February 29th, 2012 by Nancy Sandstrom
Just when we are feeling as if we’ve been shorted on our winter adventures, the Leap Day Snow Storm hits! We’ve been in the midst of a wonderful winter storm in the north – blowing winds and lots of the white stuff. The tree branches are heavy with wet snow, a lovely white landscape. Steve has spent much of the day behind the snowblower …. and likely will need to do more tomorrow morning. Bayfield is pretty much shut down as is much of Chequamegon Bay. The Madeline Island Ferry hasn’t run today due to the winds lack of visibility. Our best guess is about 14 inches.
As the storm started yesterday, we received a call from a couple from the Twin Cities looking for a room for a few nights.While I discouraged travel, they were set on making the trip. So since their arrival, they’ve been sitting by a fire watching the storm, enjoying a few saunas, eating at Maggies, and enjoying spa services. They’ve been so happy and relaxed. A great reminder for us about what we are trying to offer here at Pinehurst Inn.
So keep Bayfield and Pinehurst Inn in mind if you’re looking to continue your winter play. With Bayfield Winter Festival happening this weekend, we’ll be offering some fun!
February 27th, 2012 by Nancy Sandstrom
The partnership between Bayfield’s Pinehurst Inn and Enso Wellness Center and Day Spa create a lodging experience to be remembered. Pinehurst Inn is known for attention to the guest experience, focusing on adventure, environment and personal rejuvenation. Enso Day Spa offers the personal rejuvenation within the context of environmental sensitivity. It all sounds well and good – right? But what does this really mean?
What makes spa services being available at Pinehurst Inn good for our guests?
- Enjoy your eco-elegant Bayfield accomodations, while being able to easily wander down the steps right into the Enso experience – no car, no searching for the location. Seamless.
- Know that the services offered will enhance the sense of relaxation the whole Pinehurst Inn property offers
- The other amenities within Pinehurst Inn are a perfect combination for spa services, such as the Pinehurst Inn sauna (if you’ve ever had a massage following a sauna, you understand!)
- The Naturopathica products used by Enso Day Spa fit into the overall parameters used throughout the property – eco-certified, well tested and great for the skin. But best of all, they feel heavenly.
Of course, we are biased. Darcy and Michael, the owners of Enso Day Spa, are our daughter and son-in-law. They operate a first class business and understand how all our services and accomodations compliment each other.
A very cool partnership. A very cool way for our guests to be able to get the full lodging / spa destination experience.
February 21st, 2012 by Nancy Sandstrom
The first weekend in March (Friday, March 2 – Sunday, March 4) offers a unique opportunity to reduce your cabin fever. Bayfield Winter Festival provides a series of activities organized for the benefit of the Bayfield Recreation Center and Mt. Ashwaybay Ski and Recreation Area. Whether a spectator or participant, all activities are designed to have fun and celebrate winter in Bayfield and the Apostle Islands.
Some highlights of the weekend:
- Candlelight Walk on the Brownstone Trail (Friday Evening)
Join the Bayfield Regional Conservancy at Big Water Cafe & Coffee Roasters at 6:30pm for hot drinks and treats. Around 7:00pm, the group will head over to the Brownstone Trail for a magical walk amongst hundreds of luminary’s set along the popular hiking trail.
- Bayfield’s First Friday
Downtown Bayfield stores are open late to welcome Winter Festival revelers with demonstrations, door prizes and sales. Take advantage of these special evening hours, 4:00pm – 7:00pm, at 16 business locations.
- Run on Water (Saturday)
Race to Madeline Island and back on the ice road. Choose your own course (it’s hard to get lost…). All non-motorized methods of transportation are allowed – run, walk, snowshoe, skate, ski, bike, skijor… Awards to the top three finishers in each category. Register at www.midwestevents.com or from 10:00am – 11:00am on Saturday. Race begins at 11:00am. If ice conditions do not permit, the event will be a “Run by the Water” on Bayfield’s Brownstone Trail, and maintain a distance of 4 miles.
- Mt. Ashwabay WinterBASH (Saturday Evening)
Finish the day in style at Mt. Ashwabay’s WinterBASH from 7:00pm – 11:00pm. This event will include a giant bonfire, South Shore Beer, food, tubing, horse drawn sleigh rides, and multiple bands including The Ringtones and Alpha City with sound by JD BASS inside a heated pole barn. $5 suggested donation/person at the gate. There will also be a cross-country luminary ski from 6:30pm-8:00pm. Ski amid the sparkle of hundreds of candles illuminating the darkened woods at Mt Ashwabay! Visit mtashwabay.org for ski hill information.
- New event! On Sunday you can test your endurance during Mt. Ashwabay’s WinterDASH starting at 1:30pm. This “ultimate winter 5-km run and obstacle course” will require no gear – just guts! Go to www.bayfieldwinterfestival.com to register.
Yes, we do like to have fun up here in Northern Wisconsin! Enjoy this Winter_Festival_Flyer offering more detailed info. And if you’re still needing lodging, Pinehurst Inn still has a few rooms open!
February 18th, 2012 by Nancy Sandstrom
As we all know it’s been a bit of a non-Winter. There hasn’t been much snow, and I think there may have been more days above freezing than not in January. That said, here in Bayfield, February has been panning out to be much better! There was just enough snow for very successful Apostle Island Sled Dog Races, and tonight is the Annual Book Across the Bay, a 5 mile XC Ski race across the bay between Ashand and Washburn. It’s rumored that up to 4000 participants will be at this year’s “book.” This is an event that raises funds for grants for programs that encourage physical and mental wellness among residents of the Chequamegon Bay region. While it may be too late to participate this year, think about it for next year! We would love to have you.
Of course, next weekend the Birkebeiner ski race near Hayward, WI. While we are a bit of a hike away, if you’re not looking for participate, we have plenty of skiing and snowshoe trails up in our neck of the woods. There is more snow in the forecast and the temps are looking quite comfortable.
The sun is out today, and it’s actually quite difficult to be inside writing this blog post, when I’d much rather be outside enjoying the beauty of this winter day. So, we’re going to keep it short this time. We look so forward to seeing many of you as our late blossoming winter continues.