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Archive for the ‘Sitka Local Foods Network events’ Category

WhereOurFoodIsGrown

SitkaFarmersMarketSignWhen people stop at the Sitka Local Foods Network booth at the Sitka Farmers Market to buy produce a common question people ask is where is the food grown.

Most of the produce sold at the Sitka Local Foods Network booth is grown here in Sitka and comes from three main sources — the St. Peter’s Fellowship Farm communal garden (Laura Schmidt is lead gardener), some land in Pat Arvin’s Garden she donates to the Sitka Local Foods Network to grow potatoes and carrots, and Anam Cara Garden owned by Tom Hart and SLFN president Lisa Sadleir-Hart. We also receive donations from other family gardens in town with extra produce.

All of the funds raised selling produce at the Sitka Local Foods Network booth are used to support SLFN projects during the year. These include hosting the six Sitka Farmers Markets each summer, operating St. Peter’s Fellowship Farm, providing a variety of education opportunities about local foods and gardening in Sitka, and supporting other projects in town that promote local foods (such as the Sitka Community Food Assessment, Fish to Schools, Sitka Kitch, etc.).

Don’t forget the last Sitka Farmers Market of the summer is from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 6, at Alaska Native Brotherhood Founders Hall (235 Katlian St.). If you live near Sawmill Creek Apartments (9:45 a.m. pick-up), Indian River housing (9:50 a.m.), or the Swan Lake Senior Center (10 a.m.), we have free transportation to the market through a contract with Sitka Tours. The shuttle bus picks up at the times listed, and makes its return trip at noon from ANB Hall. We do plan a small produce table at the Running of the Boots on Saturday, Sept. 27, near St. Michael’s Russian Orthodox Cathedral.

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RunningOfTheBoots2014

It’s time to dig your XtraTufs out of the closet and gussy them up. The 20th annual Running of the Boots begins at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 27, at the big tent near St. Michael of the Archangel Russian Orthodox Cathedral on Lincoln Street.

This will be the second year featuring a new meeting point and course, allowing the race to be a bigger part of the End-of-Season Celebration festivities hosted downtown by the Greater Sitka Chamber of Commerce and the Alaska Cruise Line Association.

“I’m excited about the Running of the Boots joining the End-of-Season folks under one big tent … literally,” race organizer Kerry MacLane said. “We’ll have music, hot chocolate, and folks can enjoy a complimentary lunch after oodles of prizes have been awarded.”

So what is the Running of the Boots? It’s Southeast Alaska’s answer to Spain’s “Running of the Bulls.” Sitkans wear zany costumes and XtraTufs — Southeast Alaska’s distinctive rubber boots (aka, Sitka Sneakers). The Running of the Boots raises funds for the Sitka Local Foods Network, a nonprofit organization that hosts the Sitka Farmers Market and advocates for community gardens, a community greenhouse, sustainable uses of traditional subsistence foods and education for Sitka gardeners.

The Running of the Boots is a short race for fun and not for speed, even though one of the many prize categories is for the fastest boots. Other prize categories include best-dressed boots, zaniest costume, best couple, best kids group and more. The new course starts by St. Michael’s Cathedral, and heads down Lincoln Street toward City Hall, takes a left on Harbor Drive and loops up Maksoutov Street and back to the starting line.

The entry fee for the Running of the Boots is $5 per person and $20 per family, and people can register for the race starting at 10 a.m. Costume judging starts about 10:30 a.m., and runners hit the streets at 11 a.m. As usual, local merchants have donated bushels of prizes for the costume contest. The Sitka Local Foods Network will host a Sitka Farmers Market booth with fresh veggies for sale. The booth takes debit cards, WIC vouchers and Quest cards.

“This is a really fun way to advance the Sitka Farmers Market and our other Sitka Local Foods Network projects,” MacLane said. “This is a must-see annual change-of-the season tradition in Sitka.”

To learn more about the Running of the Boots, contact Kerry MacLane at 752-0654 or 747-7888, or by email at maclanekerry@yahoo.com.

Historical information about the race (through 2005) can be found online at http://www.runningoftheboots.org/. Info about the Sitka Local Foods Network and more recent Running of the Boots events (2008-13) is online at http://www.sitkalocalfoodsnetwork.org/ (type Running of the Boots into the search bar at the top of the page). Click here to see a slideshow of scenes from last year’s event.

Also, don’t forget to like our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/SitkaLocalFoodsNetwork to stay updated on Sitka Local Foods Network activities.

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LexiconOfSustainabilityBackDoorEventFlier

the_lexicon_of_sustainability_postYour Sitka Local Foods Network will host a free Alaska premiere of the Lexicon of Sustainability pop-up gallery art show from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 28, at the Back Door Café. Samples of a kale feta salad featuring kale grown in Sitka at St. Peter’s Fellowship Farm will be available, and the Back Door Café will be selling drinks and food during the show.

So what is the Lexicon of Sustainability? According to the website, “The Lexicon of Sustainability is based on the simple premise: People will live more sustainably if they understand the basic terms and principles that will define the next economy.” The Lexicon of Sustainability features dozens of large photos of our food and farming systems, water and energy, with a variety of topics defined on each photo, such as food security, sustainable fisheries, farm to table, permaculture, etc.

lex84_salmonsafe“The Lexicon of Sustainability illuminates the vocabulary of sustainable agriculture, and with it, the conversation about America’s rapidly evolving food culture. The Lexicon of Sustainability educates, engages and activates people to pay closer attention to how they eat, what they buy, and where their responsibility begins for creating a healthier, safer food system in America.”

In addition to the photos, the Lexicon of Sustainability includes a book, “Local: The New Face of Food and Farming in America,” by Douglas Gayeton. The project also was featured in a “Know Your Food” series of short films on PBS. Copies of Local have been ordered by Old Harbor Books and will be available for purchase soon.

WildHarvest“I had the good fortune to view the Lexicon of Sustainability art show at the Food Justice Conference in Oakland in 2012,” Sitka Local Foods Network Board President Lisa Sadleir-Hart said. “As conference attendees gathered around the posters, amazing conversations sprung up and started us thinking collaboratively about solutions and make connections with each other. I couldn’t wait to use art this way to stimulate social change conversations in Sitka around food.”

This will be the first of several Lexicon of Sustainability shows in Sitka, before the photos move north to Anchorage and the rest of the state (this batch of photos will remain in Anchorage with the Alaska Food Policy Council for future shows around the state). The photos from this first show will be on display through Saturday, Sept. 13, at the Back Door Café. Future Sitka shows include a Sitka Local Foods Network fundraiser in late October at the Sitka Fine Arts Camp/Sheldon Jackson Campus, and possibly a show at the University of Alaska Southeast Sitka Campus at a date TBA.

To learn more about this project, contact Lisa Sadleir-Hart at sitkalocalfoodsnetwork@gmail.com.

Lexicon-Local-Connected-Market-2

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ErinFultonAlaskansOwnSeafood

SitkaFarmersMarketSign(This is part of a new series of “Meet your vendors” articles, where Sitka Local Foods Network Intern McLane Ritzel is writing features about our regular Sitka Farmers Market vendors.) 

Walking past the Alaskans Own Seafood booth at the farmers market, you may have noticed a kind and bright-eyed brunette with black-rimmed glasses selling extra frozen fish from the first community supported fishery (CSF) program in Alaska. 

Alaskans Own Seafood is similar to a community supported agriculture organization, or “CSA program,” where on the last Wednesday of each month, they ship fish to participating individuals or families in Seattle, Wash., Juneau, Anchorage, and host a pick-up day for members from Sitka. 

ErinFultonAlaskansOwnSeafoodErin is program coordinator of the Alaska Sustainable Fisheries Trust, but her job entails working with many fishery organizations around Sitka, including the Alaska Longline Fishermen’s Association (ALFA) and their Fishery Conservation Networks (FCN) which engage fishermen in both research and conservation initiatives. Alaskans Own Seafood is part of the Alaska Sustainable Fisheries Trust.

Sitka had always been at the back of her mind as her family took a cruise around Alaska 10 years ago. Despite the fact that they were only in town for one day, they kayaked Sitka Sound and determined it their favorite spot on the trip. Laughing, Fulton says, “I need space. I need more trees than people.”

Most of her family still lives in her hometown of Mahtomedi, Minn., a suburb of St. Paul. Her father is the president of a steel-casting firm and works with the mining industry, and her mother stayed home to raise her and her younger brother, Alex. Alex attended Duke University for graduate school and is now a mechanical engineer for Polaris Industries. 

ErinFultonAshiaLaneAlaskansOwnSeafoodIn 2009, Fulton graduated from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., with two degrees in biology and environmental studies. When she wasn’t studying, she played the contra alto clarinet for the St. Olaf band (“a 90-member family”) when it went on 10-day tours around the United States. Concerned about the environmental effects of their carbon footprint while traveling around the country, Fulton began a carbon-offset initiative for local farmers. 

After St. Olaf, Fulton attended graduate school at Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment and graduated with two master’s degrees in environmental management and forestry. According to Fulton, at Duke, there are 7,000 acres of timberland. Her master’s thesis involved getting carbon-offset, surveying the forest, and examining afforestation, reforestation, improved forest management, and avoided deforestation. 

AO_LogoHaving never worked in or pursued an education in the fisheries industry, Fulton took a job in Sitka as a Tongass Forest Resident with the Sitka Conservation Society. She was very interested in resource management in Alaska, because unlike the Lower 48 which is “locked in” with strict laws and regulations, Alaska is an active and dynamic place with constantly changing laws and continued resource extraction. Also, given her background in forest management, she is fascinated by the life cycle of salmon and its role as a “great fertilizer for the trees and forest.” She drove from her home in Minnesota to Alaska with a friend, through the Canadian Rockies and took a ferry to Sitka from Prince Rupert, British Columbia. 

Here in Sitka, Fulton is a member of the local roller derby team Sitka Sound Slayers. Last year, she broke her leg twice, but is looking forward to getting back to the sport stronger than ever this season. And from 9-10 a.m. on Friday mornings, you can catch Erin on KCAW-Raven Radio’s Good Day Show.

Come meet Erin and check out Alaska’s Own at the next Sitka Farmers Market from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 23, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Founders Hall (235 Katlian St.).

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Sitka Farmers Market Co-Managers Debe Brincefield, left, and Ellexis Howey, right, present the Table Of The Day Award to Lori Adams of Down-To-Earth U-Pick Garden at the fourth Sitka Farmers Market of the 2014 summer on Saturday, Aug. 9, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Founders Hall in Sitka. Lori has been selling fresh produce, jams and jellies, and her local book on gardening at the Sitka Farmers Market for several years. She received a gift bag with fresh greens, fresh rhubarb, a pair of earrings, a dozen eggs, and a copy of the Alaska Farmers Market Cookbook. This is the seventh year of Sitka Farmers Markets, hosted by the Sitka Local Foods Network. The next market is from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 23, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Founders Hall, 235 Katlian St. Check our website to learn about our new bus service to the market. For more information about the Sitka Farmers Markets and Sitka Local Foods Network, go to http://www.sitkalocalfoodsnetwork.org/, or check out our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/SitkaLocalFoodsNetwork. (PHOTO COURTESY OF SITKA LOCAL FOODS NETWORK)

Sitka Farmers Market Co-Managers Debe Brincefield, left, and Ellexis Howey, right, present the Table Of The Day Award to Lori Adams of Down-To-Earth U-Pick Garden at the fourth Sitka Farmers Market of the 2014 summer on Saturday, Aug. 9, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Founders Hall in Sitka. Lori has been selling fresh produce, jams and jellies, and her local book on gardening at the Sitka Farmers Market for several years. She received a gift bag with fresh greens, fresh rhubarb, a pair of earrings, a dozen eggs, and a copy of the Alaska Farmers Market Cookbook. This is the seventh year of Sitka Farmers Markets, hosted by the Sitka Local Foods Network. The next market is from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 23, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Founders Hall, 235 Katlian St. Check our website to learn about our new bus service to the market. For more information about the Sitka Farmers Markets and Sitka Local Foods Network, go to http://www.sitkalocalfoodsnetwork.org/, or check out our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/SitkaLocalFoodsNetwork. (PHOTO COURTESY OF SITKA LOCAL FOODS NETWORK)

SitkaFarmersMarketSignLori Adams of Down-To-Earth U-Pick Garden won Table of the Day during the fourth Sitka Farmers Market of the 2014 summer, which took place on Saturday, Aug. 9, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Founders Hall, 235 Katlian St.

National Farmers Market Week was Aug. 3-9, so several Sitka residents celebrated by attending the Sitka Farmers Market. We wound up with a bit of rainy weather for this market, but we still had a nice crowd and some new booths. We also enjoyed the third market with our new bus service from Sitka Tours. This free service will be available at all of the rest of our markets this summer.

The fifth Sitka Farmers Market of the season takes place from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 23, at ANB Founders Hall. A slideshow with scenes from the fourth market is below.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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GreensInHoopHouseStPeters

Want to learn how to grow or gather your own food, or teach others about growing and gathering food? Your Sitka Local Foods Network invites Sitkans to learn more at an education committee meeting at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 27, at Harrigan Centennial Hall.

Those interested in learning more about or volunteering on Sitka Local Foods Network education projects are invited to attend. SLFN board members and volunteers will discuss the past and future of our Family Garden Mentor Project, begin to plan the 2014-15 “It’s time to …” garden classes, and discuss new opportunities for projects such as a home business garden mentoring project and a future garden tour. Those interested in learning more and volunteering are encouraged to attend.

For those who cannot attend the meeting or want more information, contact Michelle Putz at 747-2708.

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FermentationDemo

At this Saturday’s Sitka Farmers Market, Sitka Local Foods Network Intern McLane Ritzel will host a live fermentation booth where she will give out samples of locally made sauerkraut and information on how to ferment at home.

Fermentation is an ancient process where microorganisms in our food extend their usefulness and enhance flavor. Fermentation is used in a wide variety of food from around the world, including the yeast that helps make bread, wine, beer, cheese, yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, pickles, coffee, soy sauce, and more. Sandor Katz, who wrote The Art of Fermentation, calls it “the flavorful space between fresh and rotten.”

Another advantage to fermentation is it can extend the shelf life of many foods. “It’s not forever, like canned foods that you can put into a pantry or storm cellar and forget about for 10 years and still eat it,” Katz said. “These foods are alive, they’re dynamic, but they’re extremely effective strategies for preserving food through a few seasons, which is really the point.”

Recently, one of the big discussions about fermentation is how it can help replenish healthy gut bacteria, especially when items are fermented by lactic acid bacteria. These helpful probiotics are essential in an age where so many of our foods include chlorine in the water, antibiotic drugs, antibacterial cleaning products, and other sanitizing methods that kill healthy bacteria with the bad.

In addition to learning how simple it is to make sauerkraut, visitors to the booth will be able to learn about and taste kombucha. Bring a small jar to the market so you can take a kombucha starter home with you.  This week’s Sitka Farmers Market is from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 9, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Founders Hall. We’re looking forward to seeing you at the market.

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