• Scenes from Alaska’s first Lexicon of Sustainability gallery show in Sitka

LexiconOfSustainabilityBackDoorEventFlier

the_lexicon_of_sustainability_postConversations were started, ukuleles were played, and kale-feta salad was eaten as the Sitka Local Foods Network hosted Alaska’s first pop-up art gallery show of the Lexicon of Sustainability on Thursday night, Aug. 28, at the Back Door Café.

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.

“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.”

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 tentatively set for Oct. 23 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. Then the photos will go to Anchorage for the Alaska Food Festival and Conference on Nov. 7-9, hosted by the Alaska Food Policy Council. This batch of Lexicon of Sustainability photos will stay in Alaska so different groups can use them in their communities.

To learn more about this project, contact Sitka Local Foods Network Board of Directors President Lisa Sadleir-Hart at sitkalocalfoodsnetwork@gmail.com. A slideshow of images from Thursday night’s event is posted below.

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• Sitka Local Foods Network to host Alaska’s first Lexicon of Sustainability pop-up art show

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.

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• Wilcox family prepares to run across country to raise awareness about Monsanto

Fund Run

DavidWilcoxSpeaksAtMayMarchAgainstMonsantoRallyA Sitka family is gearing up for a cross-country run in January to raise awareness about genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in food and the dubious practices of agriculture giant Monsanto.

David Wilcox, 15, and his father, Brett, will begin their 3,000-mile from Huntington Beach, Calif., to Cape May, N.J.,  with stops in St. Louis (home of Monsanto) and Washington, D.C. David and Brett will receive support from mom, Kris, and sister, Olivia. The current Southeast Conference-Class 3A high school cross-country running champion from Sitka High School, David is hoping to become the second-youngest runner to complete a run across the United States (he recently found out there was a younger runner who did a similar run back in 1928). The family hosted March Against Monsanto events in Sitka in May and October as part of an international movement against the company’s practices.

“Running across the USA! Wow! David and I are growing more and more excited to pound pavement, run trails, meet people, and advocate with millions of like-minded Americans for a GMO free USA!” Brett Wilcox said.

Even though the run won’t start until January, the Wilcox family has several activities planned for December to help publicize and raise funds for the project. Brett recently self-published a book, We’re Monsanto: Feeding the World, Lie After Lie, Book One. Brett and the rest of the Wilcox family will be at Old Harbor Books for a book-signing from 2-4 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 7, and he will give a reading and book-signing at 5 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 15, at Kettleson Memorial Library.

BrettWilcoxWithBookIn addition, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 14, David will run 100 laps of the Moller Park track as a fundraiser for the trip. People can pledge per lap, or pledge lump sums at this event. Other runners are encouraged to join in the fun by running in Sitka or wherever they are and recording their laps. Also at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 14, the Wilcox family will have a table at the Elvis Monthly Grind at the Sheet’ká Kwáan Naa Kahídi.

“The topic of genetic modification can be heavy and confusing–confusing primarily because Monsanto and other chemical giants don’t want us to know about the problems associated with modern chemical-based agriculture,” Brett Wilcox said. “We’re Monsanto: Feeding the World, Lie After Lie is a fun, fast and creative approach designed to cast light on Monsanto’s products, poisons and lies. I wrote We’re Monsanto to give mainstream Americans the power to say no to Monsanto’s GMOs, say no to agricultural imperialism, and to say no to Monsanto’s lies. Once we understand that Earth’s natural biodiversity and agroecology are the true solutions to feeding a hungry world, we free ourselves from Monsanto’s poison-saturated false promises.”

To learn more about the run, you can read this Dec. 2, 2013, article from the Daily Sitka Sentinel or go to the Wilcox family website, Running The Country. The family also has created a crowd-funding campaign on Indiegogo.com, Running for a GMO-Free USA, where it hopes to raise money to help pay for the trip. In addition, Brett moderates a Facebook group, March Against Monsanto SE Alaska, and a group page about the run called, Running The Country.

• Aug. 1 entry deadline approaches in the search for a signature Sitka seafood dish

In an effort to support and promote the position of Alaska’s wild seafoods in the global marketplace, the Sitka Seafood Festival organizers and the Sitka Convention and Visitors Bureau have partnered to help inspire the creation of a signature seafood dish for Sitka.

Both professional and amateur chefs are encouraged to enter this contest, which will have judging take place from noon to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 11, at Harrigan Centennial Hall. The entry deadline is Wednesday, Aug. 1.

It is our sincere hope that this contest inspires locals to create an exciting seafood entrée that would become synonymous with Sitka. We also hope that the majority, if not all, local restaurants will offer their own version of the winning entry and eventually adopted by restaurants nationwide.

Guidelines:

  • Main Ingredient — Any locally available wild Alaskan seafood (eg, salmon, halibut, ling cod, black cod/sablefish, crab, shrimp, scallops, snapper/rockfish, etc.)
  • Quantity — Minimum of 12 servings of approximately 2 ounces each. The more the merrier!!
  • Categories — Versatile recipe/economical version, mid-priced version and, of course, gourmet.
  • Entries must be pre-made/ready-to-serve, no kitchen access will be available on-site.
  • Recipes for entries must be provided and will become public domain.
  • Deadline to enter is Wednesday, Aug. 1. There is no cost to enter
  • Set-up available at 11 a.m. and judging will begin at noon on Saturday, Aug. 11, at Harrigan Centennial Hall.
  • Judging — An anonymous panel of judges will determine the winner based on various criteria (taste, recipe flexibility, potential retail price, marketability, availability, etc.)

The winning entry will receive a cash prize, a certificate acknowledging their accomplishment, local promotion and, of course, bragging rights as Sitka’s signature dish. The winner will be announced during the Sitka Seafood Festival’s evening events at the Alaska Arts SE Campus at Sheldon Jackson.

Entry forms can picked up at Old Harbor Books or e-mailed to you. Contact Philip Rupell at 747-5940 or send e-mail to sitkaseafoodfestival@gmail.com.

• Contest information for Sitka Signature Seafood Dish competition 2012

• Sitka Conservation Society to host Sitka Community Salmon Bake on Thursday, July 19

The Sitka Conservation Society and other partners will host the Sitka Community Salmon Bake from 6-8 p.m. on Thursday, July 19, at Harrigan Centennial Hall. The cost is $20 per person, or $15 for children ages 12 or younger.

This event will feature coho salmon from Seafood Producers Cooperative, delicious side dishes and rhubarb sundaes featuring rhubarb from the Sitka Local Foods Network and ice cream from the Harry Race Soda Shop. Doors open at 6 p.m. and food is served at 6:30 p.m.

The evening will highlight the work done throughout the community by Sitka Conservation Society, and salmon-based door prizes will be given away to lucky winners who attend. Tickets are available at Old Harbor Books, and a limited number may be available at the door. For more information, contact the Sitka Conservation Society at 747-7509.

• Sitka Conservation Society hosts a Sitka Salmon Tour for Kids

The Sitka Conservation Society will host a family friendly walking tour of Sitka’s salmon habitat from 5:30-7 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 26, starting at the Sitka Sound Science Center(834 Lincoln St.).The walking tour will explore the magic of salmon from stream to plate. It is similar to the walking tours offered this summer by Sitka Salmon Tours and the Sitka Conservation Society.

This special family friendly walking tour is a benefit for the Fish to Schools program, which provides local fish and stream to plate education in Sitka schools. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for children and available at Old Harbor Books. Space is limited to 20 participants.

For more information, contact Sitka Salmon Tours and/or the Sitka Conservation Society at 747-7509 (both can be reached at this number).

• Flier for Sitka Salmon Tour for Kids

• Second Annual Sitka Seafood Festival celebrates our local bounty from the sea

The second annual Sitka Seafood Festival takes place on Friday and Saturday, May 20-21, at Harrigan Centennial Hall and Crescent Harbor.

The festival opens at 6 p.m. on Friday with the opening banquet dinner at Harrigan Centennial Hall. This event features a formal  atmosphere  with  various  local  chefs  collaborating,  each showcasing  a  separate  course. It also  introduces  our  guest  chefs —  Louisa  Chu,  chef  and writer  from  Chicago,  and  our  returning  guest  chef  Robert Kinneen  from  Anchorage.  There will be a live  music  performance  by  Ray  Troll  and  the  Rat  Fish  Wranglers  during  dinner,  as  well as  a  silent  auction  and  other entertainment. Tickets  are available  at  Old  Harbor  Books  for  $50.

The fun continues on Saturday, with a full schedule of events at Harrigan Centennial  Hall,  Crescent  Harbor  Shelter  and  back  parking  area. Events include:

  • 11 AM: Maritime-themed  parade
  • Vendor  booths  including  food,  educational  and  entertainment  booths,  kids  games  and prizes,  knot  tying  classes,  beer  garden,  live  music  by  many  local  bands,  or  anyone interested  in  showcasing  seafood/maritime-related  items  (for more  info,  contact Christi Wuerker at 738-9047)
  • Kids  and  adult  art  workshop  with  Ray  Troll  (limited  number of openings,  to  sign  up,  call  Alicia Olson at 928-607-4845)
  • GingerLee, Aerial  silk  dancer  performances by Jenn Perry
  • USCG  Aids  to  Navigation  Team  vessel  tours
  • Local  New Archangel Russian  dance  and  Naa  Kahídi  Tlingít dance  performances
  • US Coast  Guard  helicopter  rescue  demonstration
  • Cooking  demonstration  by  guest  chef  Louisa  Chu
  • Fish-filleting  demos  on  the  hour,  every  hour  starting  at  noon,  as  well  as  rockfish  identifying contests
  • Fish-head-tossing  contest,  tote  races,  crab  races  and  fish-head-bobbing  contests
  • 5-6PM:  Fish  Poetry  at  Kettleson  Memorial Library (More  info:  Jeff  Budd at  the  Greater  Sitka  Arts  Council)
  • 8-11PM:  Live  music  and  dance  with  Ray  Troll  and  the  Ratfish  Wranglers  opening  and  the headliner  band  Wicked  Tinkers  (Tickets  $20  at  Old  Harbor  Books:  more  info  available through  Sitka  Folk)

To learn more, go to  http://www.sitkaseafoodfestival.org/,  or  contact  Alicia  Olson at  928- 607-4845 or by e-mail  at sitkaseafoodfestival@gmail.com.