Here's some of what's been happening at The Clearing recently and a little of what's yet to come!

posted 11.18.13

There's lots to do (& EAT!) at The Clearing in December.

Holiday and Winter Events at The Clearing Folk School


Registration is now open for The Clearing Folk School's Winter Program classes, which start Monday, January 6 and run through Friday, February 28. Over 110 adult, daytime classes are being offered again this year in the arts, fine crafts, natural sciences and humanities. An amazing group of local volunteer instructors generously share their time and considerable talent in this 37-year, unique and wonderful annual tradition of life-long learning opportunities in the heart of winter. Students will also have the opportunity to exhibit their work during the Winter Program Student Exhibit, scheduled for March 1 & 2 at the Sister Bay Village Hall.

Classes are published on-line at www.theclearing.org and Winter Program catalogs are available at the The Clearing's Jens Jensen Visitor Center during business hours of Monday-Friday from 8-4, except Nov. 28 & 29. Registrations are accepted on-line, in-person or through the mail prior to the "lottery" deadline date of December 13 (see catalog or online registration information for detailed lottery information). After December 13, phone registration is also available and classes will be filled on a first come, first registered basis, as space permits.

The Clearing's Holiday Open House, scheduled for Thursday & Friday, December 5 & 6, from 10-4, is a perfect time to register for Winter Program classes. Or just come and enjoy homemade mulled apple cider and tasty treats while cozying up to the crackling fire. The Clearing's indoor Christmas forest is also a delight for the senses. Plus, $5 raffle tickets are available for prizes that include a free week for a 2014 Summer Resident class (approximately a $900 value), a 2-day 2013 Workshop class (approximately a $170 value), or a $75 gift certificate to The Clearing's Bookstore and Gift Shop. Drawing is December 20, 2013; no need to be present to win. All proceeds benefit The Clearing's Blacksmith Forge building fund.

In addition, The Clearing will be hosting a "Welcome Winter" wine and cheese evening fundraiser reception on Thursday, December 12 from 4-7 pm at the Jens Jensen Visitor Center. Enjoy some fine wines, delicious specialty cheeses, holiday sweets and the camaraderie with fellow Clearing friends, old and new, supporting The Clearing's Blacksmith Forge building fund. Tickets are $50 per person, reservations required. Come and learn more about this much anticipated metal arts program initiative.

So bring on the snow and the cold! You won't meet a friendlier or heartier group of people than The Clearing students in Winter. Plus, a variety of events at the Jens Jensen Visitor Center, 12171 Garrett Bay Road, Ellison Bay will keep you warm as we welcome winter! For more information, or to receive a catalog, call The Clearing at (920) 854-4088.


posted 10.15.13

Meet Writer and Clearing Instructor, Jerry Apps

Book Signing by Award-winning Wisconsin Author and Historian Jerry Apps


The Clearing Folk School is pleased to host a book signing for celebrated rural historian Jerry Apps, author of eight Wisconsin Historical Society Press books and dozens of other books and articles. Jerry will discuss his latest book, "The Quiet Season: Remembering Country Winters". In addition to being the author of dozens of books about rural history and gardening, Apps is also the subject of a national PBS documentary, A Farm Story with Jerry Apps, first produced by Wisconsin Public Television.

"The frost-covered windows in my bedroom, the frigid walks to the country school, the excitement of a blizzard..."

Jerry Apps recalls winters growing up on a farm in central Wisconsin during the latter years of the Depression and through World War II. Before electricity came to this part of Waushara County, farmers milked cows by hand with the light of a kerosene lantern, woodstoves heated the drafty farm homes, and "making wood" was a major part of every winter's work. Wisconsin winters then were a time of reflection, of planning for next year, and of families drawing together. Jerry describes how winter influenced farm families and suggests that those of us who grow up with harsh northern winters are profoundly affected in ways we don't often realize.

This free book signing event will take place on Saturday, November 2 from 4-6 p.m. at The Clearing's Jens Jensen Visitor Center, 12171 Garrett Bay Road, Ellison Bay, following his day-long Workshop writing class, Writing from Your Life (tuition $93).

Many of Jerry's books, including this most recent release, are available for purchase in The Clearing's bookstore and gift shop.


posted 9.1.13

Take a look at the 2013 Workshop Program

Fall Day Classes at The Clearing


Try something fun, new or unique in Door County for a day or two this fall. Register now for The Clearing's 2013 fall season of Workshop Program day-classes. Choose from photography classes learning about Lightroom LR4, how to utilize iPhone apps to enhance your photos, create a photographic visual narrative, or study the "masters" of nature photography. Craft a beautiful wood piece by utilizing your woodworking skills, learn to turn wood, or carve at either a beginner or intermediate level. Write from your life with award-winning author Jerry Apps; learn to plant diverse perennial spaces utilizing contemporary styles and responsible maintenance; explore active meditation formats; discover more about the Dead Sea Scrolls; fashion handmade heirloom beads; play with fabric to create a customized tote bag; or delve into 19th century U.S. immigration of America's promise and draw modern parallels.


posted 8.1.13

Enjoying a view from the bluff trail

The Clearing Folk School Announces Late Summer and Fall Docent-Led Hiking Tour Schedule

The Clearing Folk School is once again pleased to offer docent-led hikes covering the history, folklore and landscape of the school and its 128-acre property. The Clearing is a non-profit folk school established in 1935 by renowned landscape architect and conservationist, Jens Jensen, and is listed on both the National and State Registers of Historic Places. It continues to provide classes and workshops in the folk school tradition, focusing on the arts and fine crafts, humanities and natural sciences. These interpretive hiking tours visit the historic buildings and campus, led by our volunteers. The two-hour hikes begin at 1:00 p.m. on select Saturdays and Sundays starting Saturday, August 3 and run through Sunday, October 27.

Meet at 1:00 p.m. at The Clearing's Jens Jensen Visitor Center, located at 12171 Garrett Bay Road, Ellison Bay, where maps are also available for self-guided tours. No pre-registration is necessary. The terrain is rugged in places, and sturdy walking shoes are highly recommended.

Docent-led Hike Schedule:
Saturday & Sunday, August 3 & 4
Saturday& Sunday, August 10 & 11
Saturday & Sunday, August 17 & 18
Saturday & Sunday, August 24 & 25
Saturday, August 31
Sunday, September 8
Saturday & Sunday, September 14 & 15
Saturday & Sunday, September 21 & 22
Saturday, September 28
Saturday & Sunday, October 5 & 6
Saturday & Sunday, October 12 & 13
Saturday & Sunday, October 19 & 20
Saturday & Sunday, October 26 & 27

Visitors are welcomed every day to our Jens Jensen Visitor Center Bookstore and Gift Shop Monday through Friday 8-4, plus Saturday and Sunday through October from noon-4, located at 12171 Garrett Bay Road, Ellison Bay. In addition, the public may visit The Clearing's historic campus area of the property on Saturday and Sunday only (May-October) from noon to 4pm. (Stop in to the Visitor Center for a self-guided tour map.) As a reminder, this historic campus area of the property is closed to visitors Monday through Friday for the privacy of our students during our resident retreat classes from May through October.

For more information about the docent-led hikes (additional dates may be added), classes and workshops, contact The Clearing at (920) 854-4088 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, stop into the Jens Jensen Visitor Center Bookstore and Gift Shop or visit our website www.theclearing.org.


posted 7.02.13

Take a look at last year's ice cream social

Old-Fashioned Ice Cream Social at The Clearing Folk School


Who screams for ice cream? Join The Clearing Folk School's friends and neighbors at an old-fashioned ice cream social on Wednesday, July 17th. Sample six flavors of ice cream and all the fixings including homemade hot fudge from The Clearing kitchen. This fun, two-hour event begins at 7:00 p.m. at the Jens Jensen Visitor Center, 12171 Garrett Bay Road, Ellison Bay. The ice cream social is free and open to the public. Enjoy a cool treat on a warm, summer evening. We look forward to seeing old and new friends, students and neighbors enjoying the patio and the candlelit path leading to the Buchholz Council Ring bonfire. You will also have the opportunity to browse The Clearing Bookstore and Gift Shop.

For more information, contact The Clearing at (920) 854-4088 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Bring the family as we all scream for ice cream!

The Clearing Folk School was established in 1935 by renowned landscape architect and conservationist, Jens Jensen. It continues to provide classes and workshops in the folk school tradition focusing on the arts and fine crafts, humanities and natural sciences. The Clearing is listed on both the National and State Registers of Historic Places. For more information about upcoming resident classes, workshops, and docent-led campus tours, please visit www.theclearing.org.


posted 6.10.13

Take a look at last year's golf outing photos

Fifth Annual "Play 'FORE!' The Clearing" Golf Fundraiser June 25th


The Clearing Folk School's Fifth Annual "Play 'Fore!' The Clearing" 9-hole Golf Scramble Fundraiser is scheduled for Monday, June 24 at Peninsula State Park Golf Course, starting at 1:00 p.m. Registration is $75 per person or $300 per foursome and includes power cart, beverage ticket and heavy appetizers after the round at Alexander's Restaurant. Register by calling The Clearing at (920)854-4088 by Thursday, June 21st.

All proceeds will benefit The Clearing's Blacksmith Forge building fund, a building that will add an exciting new element to The Clearing's programming. Hole sponsorships are again available with a personalized commemorative flag selling for $120 and can include your name, a business name or in honor of someone special. Flags will be placed on the course and seen by golfers during the round.

For more information about The Clearing, please visit our website at www.theclearing.org or call (920)854-4088 to register for golf weekdays 8-4. The Clearing is a 501(c)(3) non-profit folk school, founded by renowned landscape architect and conservationist Jens Jensen in 1935. It remains a unique and special place where adults who share an interest in nature, arts or humanities can learn, reflect and wonder. Support and "Play 'FORE!' The Clearing"!


posted 5.28.13

Meet Writer and Clearing Instructor, Jerry Apps

Book Signing by Award-winning Wisconsin Historian and Author Jerry Apps


The Clearing Folk School is pleased to host a book reception for celebrated rural historian Jerry Apps, author of eight Wisconsin Historical Society Press books and dozens of other books and articles. Jerry will discuss his latest and most personal book, "Limping through Life: A Farm Boy's Polio Memoir". In addition to being the author of dozens of books about rural history and gardening, Apps is also the subject of a new national PBS documentary, A Farm Story with Jerry Apps, first produced by Wisconsin Public Television.

This free book signing event will take place on Saturday, June 2 from 4-6 p.m. at The Clearing's Jens Jensen Visitor Center, 12171 Garrett Bay Road, Ellison Bay, following his day-long Workshop writing class, Writing from Your Life (tuition $93).

Many of Jerry's books, including this most recent release, are available for purchase in The Clearing's bookstore and gift shop.

For more information about The Clearing, Jerry Apps' writing Workshop class or book signing, please visit www.theclearing.org, www.jerryapps.com or call (920)854-4088. The Clearing is a 501(c)(3) non-profit folk school, founded by renowned landscape architect and conservationist Jens Jensen in 1935. It remains a unique and special place where adults who share an interest in nature, arts or humanities can learn, reflect and wonder.


posted 5.01.13

Enjoying a view from the bluff trail

The Clearing Folk School's Docent-Led Hiking Tours Schedule & Open House Hours

The Clearing Folk School is once again pleased to offer free, docent-led hikes covering the history, folklore and landscape of the school and its 128-acre property. These interpretive hiking tours will visit the historic buildings and campus, led by our volunteer docents. The approximate two-hour hikes begin at 1:00 p.m. on select Saturdays and Sundays starting Sunday, May 26. Tour dates are also listed at www.theclearing.org.

No pre-registration is necessary. Meet at 1:00 p.m. at The Clearing's Jens Jensen Visitor Center, located at 12171 Garrett Bay Road, Ellison Bay, where maps are also available for self-guided tours. The terrain is rugged in places, and sturdy walking shoes are highly recommended.

Docent-led Hike Schedule:

Sunday, May 26
Saturday & Sunday, June 1 & 2
Saturday & Sunday, June 8 & 9
Saturday & Sunday, June 15 & 16
Saturday & Sunday, June 22 & 23
Saturday & Sunday, June 29 & 30
Saturday & Sunday, July 6 & 7
Saturday & Sunday, July 13 & 14
Saturday & Sunday, July 20 & 21
Saturday & Sunday, July 27 & 28

*August through October dates will be announced in July

In addition, Campus Open House hours occur every Saturday and Sunday only (May-October) from noon to 4pm, and the public is invited to visit The Clearing's historic campus area during these hours. (As a reminder, the campus area of the property is closed to visitors Monday through Friday for the privacy of our students during our resident retreat classes from May -October.) Visitors are welcomed every day to our Jens Jensen Visitor Center Monday through Friday 8-4, plus Saturday and Sunday noon-4, located at 12171 Garrett Bay Road, Ellison Bay.

For more information about the docent-led hiking tours, classes and workshops, contact The Clearing at (920) 854-4088 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, stop into the Jens Jensen Visitor Center, 12171 Garrett Bay Road, Ellison Bay or visit our website www.theclearing.org. The Clearing is a non-profit folk school established in 1935 by renowned landscape architect and conservationist, Jens Jensen. The Clearing is listed on both the National and State Registers of Historic Places. It continues to provide classes and workshops in the folk school tradition, focusing on the arts and fine crafts, humanities and natural sciences.


posted 4.23.13

Take a look at the 2013 Workshop Program

The Clearing's Workshop Program Day Class Schedule Released

The Clearing Folk School introduces this year's line-up of one, two and three-day summer and fall Workshop Program classes.

Classes begin June 13 and run through November 12. Multiple disciplines of classes are represented and include writing with Wisconsin author Jerry Apps and Wisconsin's first poet laureate Ellen Kort as well as Wisconsin's 2009 and 2010 poet laureate, Marilyn Taylor. Dr. Roger Kuhns will decipher the geologic history of the Niagara Escarpment. Learn to draw, paint with acrylic or watercolor, fine-tune your photography and iPhone-ography skills, "paint" landscapes with fabric, enhance your singing ability, or learn to utilize perennial plants in your garden while considering cost and maintenance issues. Perhaps the age-old beauty of bonsai peaks your interest. Wood turning, woodworking and carving classes will create beautiful pieces. Take a look at 19th century immigration history or discuss the ancient Dead Sea Scrolls. In all, 38 intriguing classes to choose from!

For more information about this year's Workshop Program day classes, to register for classes or to be added to The Clearing's mailing list, visit www.theclearing.org or call 920-854-4088, toll-free 877-854-3225 between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. The Clearing is a 501(c)(3) non-profit folk school established in 1935 by renowned landscape architect and conservationist, Jens Jensen. The Clearing is listed on both the National and State Registers of Historic Places. It continues to provide workshops and resident retreat classes for adults in the folk school tradition, focusing on the arts and fine crafts, humanities and natural sciences.