• ‘Getting Real About Food and the Future’ film explains the importance of local food

Why is it so important to promote local foods and local foods systems? This 30-minute video by Christopher B. Bedford explains some of the reasons why local food is so important.

According to the brief synopsis, “The growing oil, water, and climate crises threaten food security in all communities. This new film by Chris Bedford looks at the deeper issues of food security and community survival in this new age of global chaos and scarcity. ‘Getting Real About Food and the Future’ features the wisdom of John McKnight, Bill McDonough, Lester Brown, Bob Costanza, and David Korten in a 30 minute film designed for use in classrooms, meetings, and conferences.”

• James David Sneed to present food self-sufficiency talks and demonstrations

Why is salty seaweed good for tomatoes, potatoes and broccoli? Is raising small livestock in Southeast Alaska feasible? What seeds can we save here?

James David Sneed, from Price of Wales Island, has been experimenting with food self-sufficiency in Southeast Alaska for 30 years. He also has presented on this topic in Washington state.

James David will give a talk on food self-sufficiency from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday, June 11, at Harrigan Centennial Hall.

James David also will present a hands-on workshop from 10 a.m. to noon the following Saturday, June 18, at Judy Johnstone’s Sprucecott Gardens (306 Peterson Ave – up the hill from McDonalds). This workshop will feature hand tool use and care, garden layouts, bioregional aspects of gardening and nutritional gardening.

Each workshop costs $10, or $15 for both. Low income and WIC enrollees are free. Tickets available at Old Harbor Books, from Sitka Local Foods Network board members and at the door. Funds raised benefit the Sitka Local Foods Network.

For more information, call Kerry MacLane at 752-0654.

• June work parties set for St. Peter’s Fellowship Farm

St. Peter's Fellowship Farm sign

St. Peter's Fellowship Farm sign

The Sitka Local Foods Network will host work parties from 2-4 p.m. each Saturday in June at St. Peter’s Fellowship Farm.

St. Peter’s Fellowship Farm provides vegetables, herbs and fruit for the Sitka Farmers Markets, which start in July (from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on July 16, 30, Aug. 13, 27 and Sept. 10 at ANB Hall). It is located behind St. Peter’s By The Sea Episcopal Church on Lincoln Street.

In addition to helping get the communal garden ready to grow veggies this summer, volunteers can meet Laura Schmidt, who is the lead gardener for St. Peter’s Fellowship Farm this year and will coordinate most of the summer’s work parties. Laura said the work parties will be kid-friendly and there will be several activities to keep the kids busy.

To learn more about the work parties, please contact Laura Schmidt at 738-7009.

• Vendors need to start registering for booth space at this year’s Sitka Farmers Markets

The 2011 Sitka Farmers Markets won’t start until July 16, but vendors need to start registering now to ensure they have booth space when the markets take place this summer. This year’s Sitka Farmers Markets take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on five alternate Saturdays — July 16 and 30, Aug. 13 and 27, and Sept. 10 — at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall, 235 Katlian St.

We really, really, need more locally grown produce vendors, home bakers, fish mongers, prepared food vendors and volunteers this year. If you know of someone who can help, please let us know.

If you have extra locally grown produce but don’t have the time to staff a booth, you can donate it or sell it to the Sitka Local Foods Network for resale at the network’s Sitka Farmers Market booth. Proceeds from the produce sold at the network’s booth goes toward Sitka Local Foods Network projects.

This year we had to raise the vendor fee to $2.50 a foot for table space or $2.00 per foot for vendors with their own outside tents to cover costs of renting the ANB Hall and kitchen, hiring musicians and other expenses. Now that construction is finishing on the Baranof Island Housing Authority office next door to ANB Hall, we expect to be able to have some booths outdoors in the parking lot again like we did two years ago. There is an option to get your vendor space free if you help out with set-up and clean-up. Space is limited so the earlier you register for booth space, the more likely we will be able to find a spot for you.

The registration form and market rules are linked below as PDF files. If you have any questions, please contact Linda Wilson at 747-3096 (nights and weekends only) or by e-mail at lawilson87@hotmail.com.

• 2011 Sitka Farmers Market schedule flier (feel free to print out and post around town)

• 2011 Sitka Farmers Market vendor rules

• 2011 Sitka Farmers Market vendor registration form