Maya Shimizu-Harris

Maya Shimizu Harris is a freelance journalist and visual artist. She was previously the state politics and government reporter for the Casper Star-Tribune and interned for Midstory in 2021. You can view her work at

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Maya Shimizu-Harris


The Carnivorous Pitcher Plants of Wisconsin’s Berlin Fen

Picture a carnivorous plant. You’re likely envisioning the giant human-eating Venus flytrap popularized in the 1960 and 1986 remake of the film "Little Shop of Horrors." While the infamous...

Engineer Misako Hata on Innovating to Help Rural Ohio’s Small Businesses Thrive

In 2018, Athens, Ohio was ranked the poorest county in the state with a poverty rate of 30.6%. Located in the heart of Appalachia, Athens’ residents have watched the...

How Wisconsin Ginseng Became a Globally Coveted Commodity

Most people know Wisconsin for its cheese—an aged cheddar in a bright red wax or an absurdly cartoonish cheese block in hat form if you’re a Packers fan. But...

Building the Midwest’s “Little Tokyo” in Novi, Michigan

Michigan may not seem to be the most likely place for authentic Asian cuisine and experiences, but developers and city leaders in the city of Novi hope that Sakura Novi, a new mixed-use development featuring Japanese and other Asian businesses, will foster cross-cultural connections and support the Asian expatriate community there. The development will be the first of its kind in Michigan and one of only a few in the Midwest. Cover graphic courtesy of

Ecologist Leslie Brandt on How Urban Forests Can Help Us Adapt to Climate Change

Northern Wisconsin is dotted with lakes formed by glaciers, low-lying areas carpeted with peat moss and cranberries, wetland and upland areas lush with conifers and hardwoods—red and white pines,...

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