farm tour: coyote creek farm 5/29

Date: Saturday, May 29th
Location: Coyote Creek Farm

Slow Food Austin is supporting a farm tour at Coyote Creek Farm/Texas Best Organic Feed Mill in Elgin.

This tour is a fundraiser for the Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (TOFGA) and therefore there are no take-home food items; instead, you’ll take home a wealth of information about the hardworking people who are the infrastructure necessary for our vibrant local agriculture system. Proceeds go to support TOFGA programming.

The tour will be led by mill owner and farmer Jerry Cunningham, and TOFGA President Sue Beckwith. Tickets are $10; proceeds go to TOFGA.

Email levyb@slowfoodaustin.org to RSVP; spaces are limited.

photo courtesy of coyote creek farm.

slow session: the garden screening, 5/13

Date: Thursday, May 13th
Time: 7:00-8:30pm
Location: Habitat Suites

Filmmaker Scott Hamilton Kennedy’s politically charged, Oscar-nominated documentary follows a group of low-income families struggling to protect a 14-acre urban farm in the middle of South Central Los Angeles from bureaucratic real estate developers. A lightning rod for controversy in 2004, this cause célèbre drew the attention of numerous activists and politicians, including Dennis Kucinich, Joan Baez and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigoisa.

There will be some light snacks available, bring some along if you’d like to share – and any friends you can bring along with you. See you then!

RSVP

happy hour: green gate farms, 5/20

Date: May 20th
Time: 5:00pm ’til sunset
Location: Green Gate Farms

Slow Food Austin invites you to join us for a special happy hour at Green Gate Farms. We will enjoy wines from family owned Viu Manent Winery and spirited creations from our special guests Bill Norris, the master mixologist at Fino, and David Alan, the (in)famous Tipsy Texan. Delicious appetizers by Cake & Spoon and El Locavore will be served al fresco using farm ingredients so fresh, we don’t even know what they are yet! We request a $10 donation to cover the cost of the gnosh, while all the proceeds from the wine and cocktails will go to Slow Food Austin.

Lawn chairs and closed-toe shoes are encouraged.

You don’t want to miss this fantastic happy hour featuring food, toddies and tunes at Green Gate Farms so put it on your calendar and let us know you’re coming!

RSVP to karlal@slowfoodaustin.org

A special thanks to our audio providers, Ideal Productions. Make your next event an IDEAL event.

annual member potluck, 5/16

potluckDate: Sunday, May 16th
Time: 11:30am – 2:00pm
Location: Eiler’s Park (Deep Eddy)

Want to eat some good grub and meet the Slow Food Austin board?

We have an annual general membership meeting to launch our volunteer board into action for the coming year. Come enjoy a delectable potluck and say Hi to the board as well as other Slow Foodies.

Bring a dish to share and please provide your own plate & utensils (we’ll have back-ups- we’re just trying to make the event low impact). In addition to beverages, fun conversation, and some educational activities about Slow Food, we’ll have a few fun awards to hand out such as the most local dish, the simplest slow dish, the funniest named dish, etc.

Enjoy a beautiful afternoon with friends, food, and fun. We’ll be meeting and eating at Eiler’s Park (Deep Eddy), so if you are inclined to take a brisk swim wear your suit- it costs about $3 to swim.

Non-members welcome.

Contact Sara Weber, Slow Food Austin President, for more info.

slow session: the breakdown on composting, 6/3

break it downDate: Thursday, June 3rd
Time: 7pm-8:30pm
Location: Habitat Suites

The Breakdown on Composting

Join us June 3rd for our Slow Session at Habitat Suites. Jeff Paine of Break It Down will be dishing out the dirt on what is happening on the local compost scene. Learn about how you can get involved in composting at home and what’s on the horizon in the field of composting. Plus, everyone who comes will get to take home some wiggly workers to do the grunt work in your compost pile!

RSVP

potluck: support your love of local food

Join Slow Food Austin, Resolution Gardens and The South Austin Food Co-op for a local pot-luck feast, Saturday April 17th, 6-9 pm at Marigold, 2200 S. Lamar.

Bring a dish to share made with ingredients from a local grocer or farmer, your neighbor, or your own backyard! We’ll have fabulous door prizes from local businesses, live music and a chance to share the local food love. A special prize will be awarded for the “most local” dish. This event will be outdoors, weather permitting. RSVPs appreciated but not required – info@resolutiongardens.com

More info @ www.resolutiongardens.com

spring csa’s still available at local farms

Tecolote Farm, Austin’s longest-running CSA, has some rare openings this season on their south Austin Wednesday route. Just a few spots available. Please contact the farm directly at tecolotefarm@gmail.com for details.

Green Gate Farms, a historic, urban farm on Austin’s upper eastside, has memberships available for its weekly organic food subscription program, beginning March 23. Green Gate’s CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) provide members with an assortment of delicious vegetables and herbs, all grown using sustainable methods throughout the spring and summer. Flower bouquets, eggs, pastured meats, dairy and other treats can be added to each share.  CSA members receive discounts on farm events, including gardening workshops, Farm Camp, cooking classes and yoga in the hayloft. Farm stand, open Friday 12-6, Saturday 10-2. See more information, www.greengatefarms.net.

Ottmers Family CSA is offered by two well-established farms, Ottmers Family Farm and Oma’s and Opa’s Farm, owned by a father and son, respectively.  JW and Kevin Ottmers, and their families are salt-of-the-earth, hard-working folks and always have great veggies.  Their website is www.austincsafarm.com.

Johnson’s Backyard Garden is now accepting CSA members. It’s hard to believe that just five years ago, Brenton and Beth started growing vegetables in a 30-by-50-foot garden in the backyard of their house in Austin. Today they are farming 70 certified-organic acres and growing over 300 different varieties of vegetables!  The best part is that all the extra land means even more veggies!  There’s no longer a waiting list. We’ve made it even easier for you to enjoy fresh, local produce year-round. JBG has 16 convenient delivery sites located around Austin.  To Join, simply visit www.jbgorganic.com or call the farm office at 512-386-5273.

Does your farm offer a CSA? Got any spots left to fill? Email us and we’ll add you to the list!

local: slow food & slow money

slow money austin We are proud to announce our partnership with Slow Money Austin. Inspired by the national Slow Food and Slow Money movements, Slow Money Austin was formed to promote capital opportunities for local, organic and sustainable food enterprises throughout Central Texas.

Consider attending their upcoming events to learn more about Slow Money and to make a sustainable regional food system a reality! Seats are limited.

SLOW MONEY AUSTIN SHOWCASE & HAPPY HOUR

April 21st, 12:30PM-5:00PM
Austin City Hall, 301 W 2nd St

Slow Money Austin is bringing a conversation about financing our regional food system to the steps of City Hall with an educational conference featuring leaders of this emerging industry. Local, organic and artisan-crafted food and drink are cherished assets among communities throughout the nation. Beyond the health and environmental benefits of local food production, such resources, if properly cultivated, can directly power local and regional economies. Calling for a new form of venture capital, this special event promises to redefine the value and worth of a healthy local food system, and to examine the role risk capital can play in fueling growth of such a vital market.

The showcase will be followed by a networking happy hour and all attendees will receive 2 drink tickets.

Read more about this important event and register here

SLOW MONEY AUSTIN, DAI DUE SUPPER CLUB SHOWCASE DINNER at BARR MANSION

April 22nd, 6:00PM
Barr Mansion, 10463 Sprinkle Rd

The following evening, on Earth Day, April 22, the Slow Money Austin Showcase Dinner will be held at the critically acclaimed Barr Mansion, known for its historic setting and commitment to local organic cuisine and culture. This special dinner program will combine a delectable exploration of the diverse, sustainably grown riches Central Texas has to offer with a continued conversation about funding growth in our regional food system.

The program from the 21st will continue with a special keynote address about local food opportunities. You will hear from entrepreneurs who are currently raising funds to expand operations and get to ask them questions about their efforts and challenges.

No other culinary artisans prove as active or talented advocates of the Slow Food movement than Jesse Griffiths and Tamara Mayfield, whose acclaimed Dai Due Supper Club marries local food awareness with award-winning social and culinary experiences.

Read more about this important event and register here

For more information on the Slow Money Austin movement, please see – www.slowmoneyaustin.org

support time for lunch & child nutrition act

Senator Blanche Lincoln has introduced a new version of the Child Nutrition Act.

While it includes stronger nutrition standards and some support for Farm to School initiatives, it only increases funding for Child Nutrition Programs by $500 million per year, which is half the funding President Obama has proposed, and much less than what Slow Food USA has advocated for.

The Senate Agriculture Committee will begin reviewing the bill this Wednesday, March 24th. Our very own Senator Cornyn is a member of the committee, so it’s critical he knows our position!

Please take a moment today to call Senator Cornyn’s DC office at (202) 224-2934 and ask him to support:
Helping schools serve healthier food by making the full investment of $1 billion per year for child nutrition programs – including $50 million for Farm to School programs.

More info is available at the Slow Food USA Time for Lunch website.

Calling Senator John Cornyn’s office in D.C.

Key messages to get across:

I’m asking Senator Cornyn to help schools serve healthier food by investing $1 billion per year in Child Nutrition programs.?
Please include $50 million over five years to support Farm to School programs, which link schools to local farms and help the local economy.

Phone number for Senator Cornyn: 202-224-2934

When the receptionist answers, say you’re a constituent (“I live in Austin”) and ask to speak with the staff member who works on child nutrition.

When you get through to the child nutrition staff member, say your name, where you’re from and whom you represent. If you’re calling on behalf of a Slow Food chapter, mention the size of your membership and mailing list – and feel free to mention that our network has sent 725 emails to Cornyn’s office in the last few weeks.

Ask the staff member if the Senator supports:

Helping schools serve healthier food by making the full $1 billion investment in Child Nutrition. ?
Including $50 million to support Farm to School programs, which link schools to local farms and help the local economy.

If the Senator’s position is the same as yours, thank the staff member. If it’s not, explain why you believe in healthy school food. Offer to send the staff member more information and encourage the legislator to re-consider the issue.

If the staff member wants more information, ask for his/her email address and follow up immediately. This is a great opportunity to become someone on whom the staff relies for information.

If you don’t get through to anyone and you’re leaving a voicemail, state your name and phone number, where you’re from and whom you represent. Encourage the Senator to support our policy goals (listed above).

That’s all. Please report back on how it goes. Thank you!