Smell that crisp air? Hear the crunch of a layer of leaves under your feet? That’s because it’s hot girl Fall, y’all! So sip your PSL, put on your shacket, and start planning your Halloween costume, because it’s time for the Unglued Fall Retreat!
We’re back at Crooked Lane Farm, a century farm in Colfax, ND for all the perfect fall farmy vibes to celebrate the short but oh-so-spicy season. Retreaters signed up for a day of workshops with epic local makers, a break from their typical routine, and a chance to get lumberjacky and go on a hayride with a PSL in one hand and an adorable pumpkin in the other.
As retreaters arrive at the Farm, they check in with our plaid-clad crew on the very literal Crooked Lane. Once they have the lowdown on parking, schedules, and some sweet swag, it’s on to the mimosa mingle time.
Our bar boss, Langston, served up mini mimosas (why have we not been calling these mini-mosas?!), and Dex from Thunder Coffee had our serious Fall fans covered with pumpkin spice lattes as well as brewed coffee to get you pumped up for the day.
"I love the fall retreat!!! Everyone is so friendly, the crafts are so fun, the vibes are so cozy! It's a new favorite annual tradition for me & my bestie. :)"- 2022 attendee
OH, and did we mention the big-ass coffee cake that Bernbaum’s whipped up for us? Because it was amazing.
A new dynamic duo, Erica and Courtney, welcomed retreaters to the farm with pumpkin puns and a wealth of knowledge about the day, but not before a classic Unglued Crew choreographed dance! Save a horse (ride a cowboy) got everyone’s boots moving and flannelled up bodies warmed right up.
Erica and Courtney gave us the low down on what we need to know to get spicy as hell on this retreat day. Giant pumpkins, Ashley and McKaila, helped orient retreaters to CLF by waddling around the grounds, twerking their pumpkin booties (of course), and Pumpkin Ashley showed off all the make shit anytime projects!
And of course, an introduction to Crooked Lane would be incomplete without introducing everyone to the incredible, incomparable, dynamic duo who own this beautiful farm - Mary Jo and Brent (and Maxine!!) These two are seriously the best people on earth, and they don’t just put up with all the wild and crazy things we bring to their farm, they want IN on it.
In their first workshop session of the day, retreaters chose from projects like wood-turned pen making, fabulously fringy fall weaving, magical mushrooms 3D paper quilling, bread baking with Mary Jo from CLF, and lefse making with Ila, the lefse queen of Richland county.
"This was the coolest thing ever. I am so grateful to live in the area where this takes place." - 2022 attendee
"The location was BEAUTIFUL! For real the farm house looked straight out of Starry Hallows in Gilmore Girls!!" - 2022 attendee
"Thank you all so much for putting this on! Such an amazing opportunity to experience new things, be creative, and be surrounded by people who just want to learn and enjoy life!" - 2022 attendee
It’s important to keep our crafty brains and bodies fed so everyone can keep rolling, stitching, and creating their butts off! For lunch, Carrie from our crew warmed us up with, you guessed it, SOUP! #blessed We rounded out the meal with some sammies, chips, and a cookie. While everyone eats it’s a perfect time to try out a make shit anytime project, wrap up things from your first workshop, or join Erica for some bingo!
During workshop session 2, retreaters learned to make creepy coffin polymer clay earrings and simple syrups for delicious fall cocktails. They painted sunflowers with acrylics and woodland themes in watercolor. They learned how to decorate cookies in royal icing and how to perfectly pair wines with their favorite Halloween candies.
"This was a huge highlight of my Fall and I can’t wait to have this experience with you all again!!" - 2022 attendee
Speaking of Halloween…with only a week to go until the spooky, costumed, candy-filled holiday, we had to get everyone in the spirit! Skeletons, pumpkins, and ghosts, OH MY! It’s time for a Pre-Ween Tricks and Treats Happy Hour! Bar boss Langston crafted up a spicy little cocktail menu for the occasion and the Drekker beer bar is open for biz.
Retreaters could stop by the caramel apple nacho bar for a snack to munch on while they get their tarot cards read by Two BlueBirds, go on a self-guided nature walk, screen print a unique Halloween themed t-shirt with Amanda Heidt, carve up a jack-o-lantern, or head out on a crispy air hayride with Brent.
"THANK YOU to all of you for putting on such a wonderful event. I’ve had a stressful last few months and this really gave me something to look forward to and was such a bright spot in my fall. It’s a great opportunity for me to see my Fargo friends, and I’ll always cherish the memories we make at these events!" - 2022 attendee
There were spooky-ooky tunes from DJ Dizzy Boooo and temporary tattoos galore. There were treats AND tricks at the Yeobo Sweet Shop candy bar, like skull and brain gummies, and classic prank shop magic tricks and brain teasers. There was Halloween-themed trivia with Courtney and candy corn jello shots served up alongside another appearance of pumpkin McKaila.
OH, and there were corgis. In costumes. SO many corgis! In so many costumes!! That little rodeo man, are you kidding me?!
Happy as Casper the friendly ghost and just a little spooked from all the Halloween magic, retreaters went on to their third and final workshop of the day. Blacksmithing 101, embroidered pet bandanas, sip and strum ukulele, punch needle mug rugs, and full farm life: tractors, training, and CLF history rounded out the day of spiced up workshops and fall festivities.
What could be better on a crispy cool autumn evening than a fine Italian dinner? We dished up on endless salad, pasta, and breadsticks from none other than Olive Garden because we’re #basic. And we love it. Emily Swedberg serenaded us with some majestic dinner music with her violin. Yes, a single violin. Because when you’re here, you’re family (or at least making some new crafty besties!).
If you thought that sounded like the perfect retreat-ful ending to a long, but busy day, you’d be wrong. We wrapped up the day with an evening painting session à la Bob Ross with artist and ceramicist, Catie Miller. Retreaters settled in for one final creative spurt with mulled wine, a final festive cocktail, and hot buttered popcorn, to follow Catie as she instructed everyone through painting a marvelous, multicolored moth. Retreaters made their own rules for their moth painting and the result was many, many moths of different colors and forms. Some retreaters opted for a final Wondermade s’more by the campfire, too.
"Truly it was amazing and I loved every minute - you have created an event that feels awesome to go with some friends and welcoming enough to go by yourself." - 2022 attendee
As retreaters left for home under the light of the moon, with hopefully a pumpkin (or two!) in hand, all of us on the Unglued Crew were left feeling grateful as hell for all the incredible people who came out to embrace the best parts of autumn with us, all the crew making this pumpkin spiced wonderland come together, all our kick ass sponsors for their support, and Morgan from M. Schleif Photography, who does double duty as crew and photographer at these things, making us all grin big and look spicy as hell doing it!
Thank you Thunder Coffee for coming out to craft up those morning PSL's!!
And thank you Drekker for sponsoring our beer bar with your deliciousness!
Til next time - keep it spicy!