By Abigail Martin
Fall is in full swing, and it’s not too early to start making plans for the upcoming holidays. Kick off your holiday shopping Thanksgiving weekend at the second annual Something Special From Wisconsin Holiday Market. Last year, the inaugural market saw great success, and it will return for another year. The event, extended to two days this year, will run Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 in Johnson Creek, Wis. Mark the dates on your calendars to shop for unique, local Wisconsin-made gifts for everyone on your list.
Participating businesses at the market must be members of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection’s program: Something Special From Wisconsin. This program highlights products grown, raised and produced in our state. To qualify, at least 50% of the value of the product must be attributable to Wisconsin ingredients, production or processing activities. Products labeled with the Something Special From Wisconsin logo are elevated above the rest on store shelves and in consumers’ minds.
Founded in 1983, the Something Special From Wisconsin program and logo bring recognition and credibility to Wisconsin products, building upon our reputation for providing the finest goods and services available. Program members benefit from having a “Wisconsin” brand identity that consumers recognize as top quality and high value. Businesses of any size and with any scale of market — local or international — can participate. Find more information about the program at somethingspecialwi.com.
If you can’t make it to the market this year, there are still plenty of ways to choose Something Special From Wisconsin for your loved ones. Many participating companies offer online retail stores, so you can shop from the comfort of your home. Looking for a classic Wisconsin gift for a gouda friend? Shop Carr Valley Cheese and its selection of artisan Wisconsin cheeses. This family-owned and -operated business is nestled in the rolling hills and lush pastures of central Wisconsin and has been making cheese for over 100 years! Choose the Life of the Party gift box for a perfect combination of award-winning cheddars and jack cheeses, all packed in an adorable cow box.
The perfect pairing for your cheese gift? Any selection from Nueske’s Applewood Smoked Meats. Choose a summer sausage or package of Wild Cherrywood Smoked uncured bacon for a memorable gift. The Nueske family has been crafting smoked meats in Wisconsin since 1933, and to this day, they use many original recipes. This third-generation family company has a great selection for holiday gifts, as well as options for you to take to your next dinner party.
This holiday season, choose Something Special From Wisconsin for friends and family on your shopping list. Select unique products grown, raised and handcrafted right in your backyard. When you choose to support local businesses, your dollars stay in our state and return to communities near you. Support local Something Special From Wisconsin businesses this Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 at the second annual Holiday Market, or shop online for the perfect holiday gifts.
Martin is the 72nd Alice in Dairyland.