Big Read 2019


Braiding Sweetgrass is a "hymn of love to the world," says author Elizabeth Gilbert. Kimmerer is a scientist and a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation. In this book she brings together both of these ways of looking at the natural world in a celebration of our surroundings.

Questions? Contact Melissa Roelli at or (608) 437-5021, ext 109.  

The following Big Read events relate to topics covered in the book. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to attend - even if you haven't read Braiding Sweetgrass. The events work well on their own too!


Wetland Wonders
Thursday, October 3, 6:30pm
With Nicole Staskowski, Wisconsin Wetlands Association Board Member

Wetlands are one of the most important and beneficial parts of a landscape, but many of us are unfamiliar with them. Do you know how many species in Wisconsin depend on these areas? What exactly do wetlands do? How many acres of wetlands are in our state? Learn the answers to these questions and more in this evening with Nicole Staskowski, who has worked in wetlands for over twenty-five years. 



Taking Flight: A History of Birds and People in the Heart of America
Monday, October 7, 6:30pm
With author and birder Michael Edmonds

The human fascination with winged creatures has been around for centuries. Michael edmonds shares how and why people have worshipped, feared, studied, hunted, and protected the birds that surrounded them.  Drawn from archaeological reports, missionaries' journals, travelers' letters, early scientific treatises, the memoirs of American Indian elders, and the folklore of hunters, farmers, and formerly enslaved people throughout the Midwest, Edmonds reveals how our ancestors thought about the very same birds we see today. 



Fantastic Fungi: Movers & Shapers of Forests
Thursday, October 17, 6:30pm
With Dr. Glen Stanosz

Fungi are often overlooked, misunderstood, and definitely underappreciated.  Yet these diverse and highly evolved organisms are critical to function of forest ecosystems.  Their varied lifestyles are suited to roles as symbiotic mutualists, nature’s recyclers, or disease-causing tree pathogens. Mini but mighty, profoundly fungi influence their surroundings. You will not see fungi the same after this program!


Wisconsin State Parks: Extraordinary Stories of Geology & Natural History
Thursday, October 24, 6:30pm

With science writer Scott Spoolman

Science writer Scott Spoolman takes readers with him to twenty-eight state parks and forests where evidence of the state’s striking geologic and natural history are on display. The author tells stories of events and processes that shaped Wisconsin’s landscapes, including volcanic eruptions, invasions by ancient seas, crushing glaciers, and centuries of erosion. 


Native American Plant Medicines
Saturday, October 26, 10am
With Misty Cook, Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohicans

The author of Medicine Generations: Natural Native American Medicines Traditional to the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohicans Tribe, Misty Cook shares an overview of the history of eight generations of the Native American Medicines passed down through her family.  She will discuss different types of medicine, how they are used and will share how her book came to be. 



Kimmerer PicAuthor Skype Visit with Robin Wall Kimmerer, followed by Community Book Discussion
Monday, October 28, 6:15pm

Confirmed! Robin has been out in the field, but she just confirmed that this date will work. We are honored that she will join us via live Skype chat. 



Photo by Dale Kakkak