This coming week, in events that get to your heart through your stomach.
Tuesday, June 21
Starting your own food-based micro-business sounds great. You do what you love, the money follows. Oh wait -- first, you need a licensed commercial kitchen to whip up your dishes, and they are in short supply. The Summer Solstice Sampler is a fundraiser for the Food Enterprise & Economic Development Kitchens, a community development project of the Northside Planning Council that is working to make this vision a reality. The event will feature appetizers prepared by local restaurants and chefs, live music, door prizes, and a silent auction. Capital Brewery, 7734 Terrace Ave., Middleton, 5:30 p.m., $33 advance and $38 door for individuals or $55 advance and $60 door for couples. Call 217-1388 for more info.
Wednesday, June 22
In Wisconsin, our loyalties lie with beer. And justly so. You can learn physics, botany, microbiology, and chemistry from studying beer. (And frankly, this may be a good way to motivate students.) This week's Wednesday Nite @ the Lab, a weekly science lecture series at the UW, is a good example. Titled "A Midsummer Night's Brew: The Arts & Sciences of Brewing Beer at Home," the talk by Ella Braden will cover the increasingly popular at-home process of turning malted barley, water, and other ingredients into an alcoholic beverage central to the state's identity. UW Biotechnology Center Auditorium, 425 Henry Mall, 7 p.m., free. Call 265-2420 for more info.
Friday, June 24
If you ever doubted that pizza was a food of the people, this spring in Madison will surely have convinced you of the fact. The Power to the Peaceful Pizza Party, more than a post-mortem, will be a discussion of solidarity as it stands now, and yes, pizza. Capitol Square, 5-9 p.m., free. Call 437-5478 for more info.
Sunday, June 26
When it comes to cooking competitions, you shouldn't start with the whole enchilada (so to speak). This brings to mind the old joke "How do you get to Carnegie Hall?" "Practice!" Before cakes come cupcakes. The venue to share your cupcake-baking prowess is Iron Cupcake Madison, with its fifth challenge theme: Children's Books. Admission proceeds benefits the Literacy Network, and purchases a tasting of a baker's dozen of mini cupcakes and a vote to boot. Basie's, 517 Grand Canyon Dr., 1 p.m., $7. See Facebook, or call 239-1804 for more info.
More events this week
Tuesday, June 21
Wine & Roses in the Garden, a wine and cheese tasting with a performance by The Morning Still, contemporary piano music by Madison composer Mattheew Hollingsworth. K&W Greenery, 1328 E. US Hwy. 14, Janesville, 6-8 p.m., free. Call 608-921-0234 for more info.
Thursday, June 23
Town & Country Days, an annual four-day community festival, featuring the Sons of American Legion Beer Tent serving "legendary" sliders, live music, a carnival, and more. Commons Park, downtown Lake Mills, 4-11 p.m. Thursday, 4 p.m.-12 a.m. Friday, 11 a.m.-12 a.m. Saturday, 12 p.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. Call 920-648-3585 for more info.
Oregon Summer Fest, an annual four-day community festival, featuring a beer tent, nightly dinners, food vendors, live music, a carnival, softball tournament, 5K run/walk, car show, parade, and more. Kiser Firemen's Park, 245 Brook St., Oregon, 5-10:30 p.m. Thursday, 4 p.m.-1 a.m. Friday, 9 a.m.-1 a.m. Saturday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday. Call 608-835-3697 for more info.
Dane Fest, an annual four-day community festival, featuring a beer tent and grill, pork and chicken dinners, live music, a softball tournament, children's activities, a parade, and more. Bert Deans Park, 120 Railroad St., Dane, 5 p.m.-1 a.m. Thursday, 5 p.m.-1 a.m. Friday, 9 a.m.-1 a.m. Saturday, 9 a.m.-close Sunday. Call 849-4211 for more info.
Northern Italian Comfort Food cooking class, with instructor Jennifer Jones preparing a family recipe for polenta. Whole Foods Market, 3313 University Ave., 6-7:30 p.m., $25. Call 233-9566 for more info.
Friday, June 24
Heidi Festival, an annual three-day community festival celebrating Swiss culture, featuring a play based on Johanna Spyri's classic novel, the Taste of New Glarus, a BBQ dinner, an arts and crafts fair, wagon rides, and more. Village Park, 319 Second St., New Glarus, 5-7:30 p.m. Friday, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. Call 800-527-6838 for more info.
Native Foods Night, a workshop and dinner organized by Slow Foods UW-Madison that explores the traditional foods of Wisconsin's native peoples, with a menu of Oneida white corn, wild rice soup, and cornbread. The Crossing, 1127 University Ave., 3 p.m., $5. Please RSVP online by Tuesday, June 21, and call 257-1039 for more info.
Saturday, June 25
Sun Valley Strawberry Festival, an annual community festival, featuring breakfast and lunch, strawberry desserts, an arts and crafts fair, live music, children's activities, bingo, a raffle, and more. Sun Valley Presbyterian Church, 1650 Sun Valley, Beloit, 7 a.m.-3 p.m. Call 608-365-7547 for more info.
Healthy Living Expo, an annual family expo and fundraiser for Gilda's Club Madison, featuring vendors, demonstrations, food samples, children's activities, a silent auction, and more. Marriott West, 1313 John Q. Hammonds Dr., Middleton, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., free admission. Call 831-4519 for more info.
An Evening with the Cranes, an annual fundraiser for the International Crane Foundation, featuring a wine tasting, local foods, live music, and more. International Crane Foundation, E11376 Shady Lane Rd., Baraboo, 4-8 p.m., $60. Purchase tickets online, and call 608-356-9462 x. 121 for more info.
Bringing Hope 2 Tanzania, a fundraiser for a Bringing Hope 2 Others mission trip to Arusha and Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, featuring an African dinner and dance. Prairie Athletic Club, 1010 N. Bird St., Sun Prairie, 5-8:30 p.m., $20. Call 825-9557 for more info.
Sunday, June 26
REAP snack prep, with volunteers needed to prepare and package fresh, healthy, and locally-grown treats for kids at 14 elementary schools around Madison. RP's Pasta, 1133 E. Wilson St., 9 a.m.-noon. Call 310-7836 for more info.
Cooking it All: Menu Planning & Techniques for a High Vegetable Diet, a workshop hosted by the Madison Area CSA Coalition to provide recipes, tips, and techniques for using veggies from a sample CSA share. Willy Street Co-op West, 6825 University Ave., 4 p.m., $15. Call 226-0300 for more info.
Asian seafood cooking class, with instructor Paul Tseng preparign a menu of pan-seared salmon with mango relish, steamed whole fish, sweet & sour fish, and seafood fried rice. Willy Street Co-op East, 1221 Williamson St., 11 a.m.-1 p.m., $15 owners and $25 all others. Call 251-6776 for more info.
Save the date
Thursday, July 21
An Evening with Pride Mountain, a wine dinner in the L'Etoile Oenophile Series featuring vintages from Pride Mountain Vineyards of Napa Valley. L'Etoile, 1 S. Pinckney St., 6 p.m., $95. Call 251-0500 for more info.
Sunday, September 18
Bike the Barns, the fifth annual bicycle tour featuring farms in south-central Wisconsin and local food prepared by the Underground Food Collective, featuring the 65-mile "Rutabaga" route and 26-mile "Radish" route complete with three farm meal stops in eastern Dane County and western Jefferson County and a post-ride celebration, organized as a fundraiser for the Madison Area CSA Coalition's Partner Shares program. Lake Ripley Park, 4310 Park Rd., Cambridge, 8 a.m., pledge and no-pledge requirement fees for both rides. Register online, and call 226-0300 for more info.