Prairie Public Broadcasting
February 20, 2000
Schmeckfest: Food Traditions of the Germans From
Contact person: Marie Lucero - 1-800-359-6900
March 5, 8 p.m. (CT)
March 15, 7 p.m. (CT)
The award-winning team that produced The Germans From Russia:
Children of the Steppe, Children of the Prairie, Prairie Public
Broadcasting and the North Dakota State University Libraries, is
planning the premiere of their newest collaborative effort. Prairie
Public Broadcasting will air the premiere of SCHMECKFEST: FOOD TRADITIONS
OF THE GERMANS FROM RUSSIA on Sunday, March 5 at 8 p.m. (CT).
Narrated in first-person by writer Ron Vossler, Schmeckfest is
a collection of vignettes filmed in the kitchens of cooks who remember
milking cows on cold North Dakota mornings; at a cafe that still
serves the traditional Knoepfla Soup; and at a modern Schmeckfest
where, to use the literal definition of a Schmeckfest, people celebrate
with a 'festival of food.'
"We know this new production will be as well-received as the first
Germans from Russia documentary," said Bob Dambach, Prairie Public
programming director and producer of the series. "Viewers, both
of German Russian heritage and otherwise, praised not only the visual
and technical aspects of THE GERMANS FROM RUSSIA, but also the depth
and quality of the content. That same attention to excellence has
been put into SCHMECKFEST, but with a narrower focus -- specifically,
the importance of the celebrations and the food ways that shaped
the lives of this ethnic group."
"These were a people who overcame much adversity," added Michael
Miller, co-producer of the films and Bibliographer at the Germans
from Russia Heritage Collection, NDSU Libraries. "SCHMECKFEST is
important to our prairie heritage; it preserves a legacy of a very
self-sufficient group. The film is a chronicle of the prairie women
who left no records of their lives, but who are remembered every
day in the recipes and rituals of the kitchen: the heart of the
THE GERMANS FROM RUSSIA, the precursor to SCHMECKFEST, is an examination
of the ethnic group's fascinating history. It has aired on 70 public
broadcasting stations in 26 states and four Canadian provinces.
The film has received the prestigious Silver Telly Award as one
of the best documentaries in America, a bronze plaque award in humanities
from the Columbus 47th Annual International Film and Video Festival,
and was shown to an international audience at the Third International
Ethnic TV Festival in Krakow, Poland.
SCHMECKFEST: FOOD TRADITIONS OF THE GERMANS FROM RUSSIA will be
rebroadcast on Wednesday, March 15, at 7 p.m., followed by THE GERMANS
FROM RUSSIA: CHILDREN OF THE STEPPE, CHILDREN OF THE PRAIRIE at
8:30 p.m. (CT).
For more information including photographs, review:
- and click Schmeckfest
- and click Foodways Documentary