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Harmony arts board sponsors special event

Fri, Sep 27th, 2013
Posted in Harmony Arts & Culture

HARMONY, Minn. — The Harmony Arts Board proudly presents a wonderful collaboration between well-known chef, Stephen Larson, and Lanesboro’s Habberstad House Bed and Breakfast owner and author, Nancy Huisenga, during a rare afternoon event that is free to the public. Savor both Nancy’s honest and humorous confessions as she reads from her newly-released hit book, “Behind the Door Marked ‘Private’: Confessions of a Small Town Bed and Breakfast Owner”, as well as Chef Larson’s presentation of several delicious samples of the Habberstad House breakfast menu.

Held at the ever-popular QUARTER/quarter Restaurant and Wine Bar, 25 Center Street East in Harmony, Minn., on Sunday, October 13, from 3:30 – 5 p.m., this free event will feature Larson preparing a sample menu consisting of Huisenga’s Dutch Apple Pannekoeken, Scotch Eggs, Tres Leches Cake, Potato Cakes, and Anna’s Cornbread, presented in tasting portions with his usual panache.

Huisenga and Larson have collaborated in the past, when Larson spent several afternoons at the Habberstad House helping Huisenga and her husband Dave revamp their breakfasts with some new recipes, much needed after seven years running the premier B&B, located in Lanesboro, Minn.

Huisenga is known throughout the area not only for the excellent reputation of the Habberstad House Bed and Breakfast, which she has operated in Lanesboro, Minn. with her husband Dave since the year 2000, but also for the many roles she has played when acting for the Commonweal Theatre Company and other local theater groups. Her most recent portrayal of the eccentric Madame Arcati in the Commonweal’s summer production of Noel Coward’s comedy “Blithe Spirit”, was a smash hit.

In December of 2012, Huisenga published her first book, “Does a Zebra Know It’s Striped?” for children, followed now by the B&B book, which recounts her personal journey from being St. Paul “city slicker” to small town B&B owner over a 12-year period. Reading the book that is filled with recipes, laughter and some of Nancy’s tears, reviewers are heaping praise, such as the following:

“Nancy Huisenga is an insightful storyteller who captured life in the quaint artsy town of Lanesboro, Minnesota. She shared the joys and trials of transforming a Victorian home into a top-notch B&B. A must-read for anyone contemplating such an endeavor. She generously included their Habberstad House recipes. I used some and really impressed our guests.”

--Renee Bergstrom, PhD

“I laughed, I cried and I related to this charming tell-all book.

What an amazing read...the stories in “Behind the Door Marked Private” were honest and touching. As a B&B owner myself in a small town, I found myself more often then not nodding my head and totally relating to these stories. Several of the recipes included I will experiment with and use for our guests as well. Some great points were made for those “aspiring” to be Inn keepers that I myself would share.”

--Applesauce Inn, Bellaire, MI

Larson also helped Huisenga with formatting the breakfast recipes included in her book, which was launched on September 14 with a major reception at the Lanesboro Arts Center. That reading/book signing served as the Capstone Event for the grant awarded to Huisenga by the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council in March, 2013, thanks to funding from the Minnesota State Legislature, and the evening brought record-breaking attendance and book sales.

Chef Larson has been described as having “an enthusiasm for food,” not only with his restaurant but also teaching in a variety of settings over the years, including his cooking segments on KSMQ-TV’s “Garden Connections”, which are available on the KSMQ website.

Together, Huisenga and Larson make the perfect team to bring tasty recipes and a great book to life, as participants peek “Behind the Door Marked “Private” and hear some of those confessions.

Event sample menu of food is free of charge. A cash wine bar will be available.

Huisenga’s books will be available for signing and purchase.

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