Thursday, June 24, 2010

Livin' in the Blurbs: Planting & Celebrating

The plants in my garden are rubbing their little eyes, waking from a sleep brought on by cool temps and too much rain, and hopefully thinking it might be time to do some growing. If you're like me and have way more produce coming in than you can use, consider giving it to people in our community who don't have enough to eat. The Plant a Row for the Hungry program distributes homegrown produce to hunger-relief agencies, providing much-needed fresh vegetables and fruits to hungry families and individuals. There are drop-off sites all over the city, so get growing!

Details: Plant a Row for the Hungry. A list of what to grow and donate, as well as drop-off sites here. Farmington Gardens in Beaverton is also accepting donations Sundays and Wednesdays, 10:30 am-noon, at 21815 SW Farmington Rd.

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Operating in a century-old farm that, when it began, was way out in the country, Zenger Farm is now a non-profit urban farm. Dedicated to promoting sustainable food systems, environmental stewardship and local economic development, it utilizes the combination of a 10-acre wetland adjacent to the 6-acre organic farming operation to provide unique experiential learning opportunities for youth, farmers and families. You can help celebrate farming in the city at their annual picnic on August 14 and take a farm tour, enjoy a local picnic prepared by Bon Appetit Chef Joe McGarry, listen to live music and watch an outdoor movie projected on the side of their barn. What better way is there to enjoy a summer evening in the city that to spend it on a farm?

Details: Zenger Farm Annual Picnic. Sat., Aug. 14, 5 pm; tickets $15-35 (sliding scale), children under 12 free, available at the farm on the day of the picnic. Zenger Farm, 11741 SE Foster Rd. 503-282-4245.

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Now that summer is officially in full swing, local festivals and fairs are starting to crowd the calendar with beer, wine, music and all manner of activities, with the seasonal surge in the consumption of curly fries. One event that seems particularly worth noting is the Muddy Boot Organic Festival which this year will explore urban farming, homesteading, food policy and more with the theme “Nourishing Spirit: City to Farm.” Look for hands-on gardening and farming activities for kids and grownups, workshops on urban farming and sustainable food and more. Personally, I'm excited that GSNW friends and Peabody Award-winning movie men Curt Ellis and Ian Cheney will be presenting the keynote address on Sept. 10!

Details: Muddy Boot Organic Festival. Sept. 10-12; $5 admission per day, keynote additional. St. Philip Neri Church, 2408 SE 16th Ave. (near 18th & Division).

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