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Media Release
Prairie Public Broadcasting
February 20, 2000

Schmeckfest: Food Traditions of the Germans From Russia


Contact person: Marie Lucero - 1-800-359-6900

Air Dates:

    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 home."

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:

http://www.prairiepublic.org - and click Schmeckfest

http://library.ndsu.edu/gerrus/projects.html - and click Foodways Documentary

Permission to use any images from the GRHC website may be requested by contacting Michael M. Miller
North Dakota State University Libraries
Germans from Russia Heritage Collection
Libraries
NDSU Dept #2080
PO Box 6050
Fargo, ND 58108-6050
Tel: 701-231-8416
Fax: 701-231-6128
Last Updated:
Director: Michael M. Miller
North Dakota State University Library North Dakota State University North Dakota State University GRHC Home