Every day for almost 45 years energy crackled from a little spot near Europe Lake. Now only a small footprint remains where an old cedar-shingled chicken coop once stood. Converted into a tiny writing studio — the humble, creative cove was where Door County’s best-known writer, Norb Blei penned his novels, short stories, essays, and poems.
After moving to northern Door with his family in 1968, this former teacher and journalist from Chicago spent decades documenting the people, manners and customs of the Door Peninsula. His freelance articles were a powerful marketing force, luring first-time visitors from throughout the Midwest.
Norb’s voice was one of the loudest to consistently call for protection of the county’s people, landscapes and shorelinesNow Norbert Blei has left us. His legacy includes 16 published works, related writing awards, the Cross+Roads Press chapbooks he published of other writers’ work, and eight years of Poetry Dispatch essays.
His spirit can always be found in his books and wherever you connect to the county’s beauty. His writing ‘Coop’, has been moved to a new home at the “Write On, Door County!” writing arts center in Juddville, between Egg Harbor and F ish Creek. Here, it will productively live on, providing a safe haven and inspiration to new generations of Midwestern writers.