By Katharine Johnson, Illustrations by Alicia Schwab
With help from his friends, Karhu dances his way to Finn Town's liveliest winter event, the Mukluk Ball, featuring the tango, the conga, and even the Bear Hug Twist.
Karhu the bear lives in the piney north woods near the bustling burg of Finn Town. When he sees a billboard advertising Mukluk Ball: Come One, Come All, he wants to go! Unfortunately, a few obstacles stand in his path.
First: he needs to buy a pair of mukluks, soft leather boots perfect for dancing. Karhu brings his innate skills to the town's summer festival. He sells freshly picked blueberries and comforting bear hugs to earn enough for this essential purchase.
Next: he needs to learn how to dance. Luckily, talented friends like Millie the square dancer and Mary Ann the librarian and Inga the folksinger agree to teach him. Soon he can polka and chachacha and boogie-woogie.
And then, the most vexing hurdle of all: with the dance set for January, Karhu needs a surefire way to wake up from his long winter’s nap. Here, his friend Zazaa the owl swoops in to offer a solution.
Will the Mukluk Ball live up to Karhu's dreams? The warmth and music and fellowship filling Finn Town Hall might just make for the best night of this bear's life.
Katharine Johnson wears mukluks all winter in Cloquet, Minnesota; her stories have been published in magazines and anthologies.
Alicia Schwab has been drawing and dancing her whole life. She is the illustrator of Good Grief and Great Group Skits.
Forthcoming October 2018 from the Minnesota Historical Society Press:
$16.95 Hardcover, 10x10 inches, 32 pages, fully illustrated in color