/ Uniquely Wisconsin: Portage County

Uniquely Wisconsin: Portage County

Photo Credit: Discover Mediaworks

Portage County is home to many untold stories and secrets that set the county apart from any other. But what makes it so special? The locals who hold them. Listen in as they tell the stories of Wisconsin’s dairy history and polish heritage and even spill the secrets behind Main Grain Bakery’s sourdough. 

Generational Farming: Wisconsin’s Dairy Industry

Photo Credit: Discover Mediaworks

The fabric of Wisconsin is woven by family farms that often spans generations. One such place can be found in Portage County, which is home to the sixth generation Feltz Farm.

Now owned by Jake and Jared Feltz, the farm has been a part of the family for more than 100 years. Today, it proudly boasts one of the world’s highest producing dairy herds.

In recent years, the family farm was operated by their grandfather, George, then carried on by their parents, Ken and Jackie. From nurturing the importance of the dairy industry in our state to highlighting those individuals who keep the farm running, the Feltz family has worked tirelessly to share their story and honor their history.

And no visit to a dairy farm is complete without spending some time learning about the cheesemaking process and how it has evolved over the years. Visit the Uniquely Wisconsin YouTube channel for an insider’s look at how technology has changed the way cheese is made and why it makes a difference in this farm’s cheese store.

Watch this Uniquely Wisconsin short here: 

Polish Heritage in Portage County: The Backstory on the Blacksmiths

Photo Credit: Discover Mediaworks

Portage County is home to many Polish immigrants, with almost 60 percent of the population with roots in this beautiful Eastern European country. Keeping the history and culture alive is the Kochanowski family, including dad Boleslaw Kochanowski and his three sons, August, Valerius and Vincent. These blacksmiths and artisans are honoring their heritage by creating outstanding metal sculpture that features parts of their Polish roots.

“Having a grandfather that came to this country and like so many immigrants that had to struggle to find their way in life, it has really affected our entire family,” said August Kochanowski. “From a very young age we were taught to be more like him. We have strong ties to Polish heritage here and our work reflects this.”

Driving around Stevens Point, you can see the beautiful and original Kochanowski blacksmith sculptures, including the Point sculpture just beyond the sign welcoming you to the city. This family tradition is going strong, with Boleslaw looking to the future to carry on their blacksmithing traditions.

“There is a good possibility that our sons will carry on the family business and that is heartwarming to me.”

Watch this Uniquely Wisconsin short here: 

The Secret Behind The Sourdough: Portage County’s Main Grain Bakery

Photo Credit: Discover Mediaworks

Sarah Jo More discovered her passion for good food while studying at UW-Stevens Point and has stuck around Portage County ever since. Her dedication to serving is making Portage County an even better place to call home.

Main Grain Bakery & Eatery in Stevens Point offers scratch-made breads, baked goods, soups, salads, and more. They are providing excellent food options to their customers and the community they live in.

“All of our breads are made from scratch, all of our baked goods are made with our hands and all of our mixes are divided and shaped with our hands and made with so much love,” said Sara Jo, who co-owns Main Grain Bakery & Eatery with her husband Michael More. “The amount of energy we put into it and the fact we can get a staff of 22 to show up each morning and turn these lights is amazing and we are so proud of the community we created.”

Running a successful bakery and restaurant in the thriving downtown of Stevens Point has been quite the ride for the couple.

“Starting a business in Stevens Point, it’s a small community but a very interesting community,” said Michael. “There are a lot of people doing cool things and there’s a great energy that we didn’t expect. There are always new and interesting things happening here.”

Watch this Uniquely Wisconsin short here: 


Portage County is truly one-of-a-kind because of the people who call the county home. Holding many untold stories and secrets, the locals give insight into the local food scene–from Wisconsin’s dairy legacy to the Main Grain Bakery–and the area’s Polish history and heritage.

Want more? Find more local stories in Portage County at


*Narration provided by Wondervox.

From the team at Discover Wisconsin: We believe in making our content accessible to all, which is why we offer an audio version of our blog posts. By clicking the play button above, you can listen to our blogs!

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