Pan Drippings – December 10, 2012 – UPDATED

Urban Farm Magazine

Thanks to a heads-up from Ingrid Fowles, Spring Creek Homesteading now has a subscription to bi-monthly Urban Farm Magazine. Once I get the first copy, I’ll put the word out for people to join a reader-tree to pass it around town. And when Taproot Kitchen is up and running, it’ll include a library of homesteading books and magazines, including the back issues of Urban Farm Magazine.

News from Centre County Buy Fresh Buy Local

  • CCBFBL E-Newsletter – December 6, 2012 Edition:
  • “Mulled Wine & Gingerbread” Holiday Open House at Mt. Nittany Vineyard & Winery: Saturday, December 15 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm and Sunday, December 16th from 12:30 pm to 4:00 pm – See the winery in its seasonal finery and get in the holiday mood with Christmas music, hot mulled wines and holiday sweets. Check out wine baskets you can customize and many locally-made food and gift items that will be appreciated by everyone on your holiday list. It’s a fun way to knock off some holiday shopping in a festive and fun atmosphere!

News from the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture

  • PASA E-Newsletter – December 6, 2012 Edition – 2013 Farming for the Future Conference now open for registration.

December 11 – Boalsburg Winter Farmers Market Preview

(From Jim Eisenstein)

Our indoor market will be open on Tuesday from 2:00 to 6:00 PM in the Boalsburg Fire Hall, our usual winter digs.  You’ll find a full array of products available all year (cheese, meat,salmon, milk, bread, prepared foods and more), plus root vegetables, apples and cide, and some green vegetables as well.  Just because it is winter doesn’t mean you still can’t buy local and buy fine quality at a fair price.

December 12 – Green Drinks at Otto’s Duffy’s

(From Ed Perry)

Climate change enthusiasts – Since I couldn’t put a Beer and Wine Summit together, a number of you suggested to me that we meet for a few beers and dinner. I suggest meeting at 6:00 p.m. on Dec 12 at Duffy’s in Boalsburg. So far, we have 12 people coming – contact me if you’d like to join us. I will try to get a table reserved.

Also – there is a movement across the country to get universities to divest fossil fuel holdings from their stock portfolio.  We can all do that too.

New York Times Coverage: “A group of Swarthmore College students is asking the school administration to take a seemingly simple step to combat pollution and climate change: sell off the endowment’s holdings in large fossil fuel companies. For months, they have been getting a simple answer: no.    As they consider how to ratchet up their campaign, the students suddenly find themselves at the vanguard of a national movement…”

December 21 – Kids Bakery Workshop at Way Fruit Farm

Calling all kids!  Do you like to bake or would you like to learn?  Do you love cookies?  If  you answered yes, then we’ve got an event for you!  Call our farm today (692-5211) to register for the Kid’s Bakery Workshop to be held Friday, December 21 from 5 – 7 p.m. in the Way Cafe.  Cost is $10 per child.

You will get to measure, mix, stir and taste-test your way to from-scratch, fresh-baked cookies for your family just in time for Christmas. You can enjoy cookies and storytime while your cookies bake and even take home a container of a dozen cookies at the end of the night, with a special plate for Santa, if you like.

Parents, here’s how it works.  Call to register your child/children for the Bakery Workshop by Wed., Dec. 19.  The day of the event, you can drop your little bakers (ages 4-13) off at the farm store no earlier than 4:45 p.m., pay the registration fee of $10 and then browse the farm store, order dinner in the Way Cafe or head home to finish some last-minute present wrapping, and then pick the kids up at 7 p.m. sharp.  We will provide supervision for your children while they are in the kitchen. Our Elves (our experienced bakers) will be on hand to guide, assist and ensure the safety of your bakers during the event.  No child will be operating powered mixers or the ovens.  All oven use will occur once the children have left the kitchen and are enjoying a cookie snack and storytime in the Way Cafe while we wait for everyone’s cookies to be baked by our “elves.”

Also, in order to be sensitive to allergies, no nuts or peanut butter will be used in the cookie recipes that evening, however, nuts, peanut butter, flour and other allergens are used every day in the Way Bakery, so if you’re child has a severe allergy, please discuss it with us before attending.  We are so excited to try this new event with your children at this fun time of year!  We hope you will bring your little bakers out and enjoy the delicious results of their time spent at the Kid’s Bakery Workshop at Way Fruit Farm!

Do you need bakery goodies for the office parties, family gatherings and impromptu guests this holiday season?  Let our bakery full of “elves” help you fill your home, office & school with delicious goodies this year!  Stop by or call ahead to order cookies trays, fruit pies, fresh-baked daily breads, sticky buns, apple donuts, muffins and more!  Pricing available when you call or stop by.   We are always baking, so we will serve you as quickly as we can but please allow 24-48 hours notice for larger, special orders.  We hope to serve you soon!

January 4 – Deadline to Submit Ideas for 2013 PASA Field Day Programs

(From Rebecca Robertson)

Hello PASA farmers and partners!

Is your farm or organization interested in partnering with PASA on a Field Day in 2013 to deliver specific programming? Go to our website here for more info and to access our proposal submission form. We look forward to hearing from you by Friday, January 4th!


PASA is exploring the use of small-scale hydro power as a renewable energy option for farms. We are hoping to identify and talk with any PA farmers out there who are currently making use of hydro to produce farm power, as we are considering the value of organizing a Field Day on the topic. If you or anyone you know is using hydro power, we’d appreciate your passing along any contact leads to me by email or phone: 814-349-9856, extension 20.

January 18 & 19 – Shortcourse Baking with Locally-Grown Grain in Trumansburg NY

(NOTE – Trumansburg is almost a four-hour drive from State College, but if local bakers, grain farmers and millers are interested in attending this workshop and need financial assistance to make it happen, please contact us about getting a grant to support your attendance.)

Join bakers Stefan Senders and David McInnis of Wide Awake Bakery in Trumansburg for an intensive, one-day course on baking with locally grown and milled wheat.

Two sessions available:

  • Friday, Jan 18, 2013 – 8 am — 5 pm
  • Saturday, Jan 19, 2013 – 8 am — 5 pm

Wheat grown in the Northeast can make terrific bread, but because flour made from locally grown grain is not the same as commodity flour, there can be a learning curve in working with its unique properties. Stefan and David will share insights and techniques that stem from their collaboration with local farmers and a new milling enterprise, Farmer Ground Flour.

The course will include a practice-based session in the wood-fired bakery working with flours from the local mill and an introduction to baking with the ancient grains einkorn, emmer, and spelt (led by June Russell of Greenmarket) to create tasty, distinctive breads and pasta.

Issues such as cost and sourcing of locally grown grains and flours will be covered. Plus, Stefan and David will share their experiences with their community-supported-baking or Breadshare.

This course is for artisan bakers, home bakers, students, farmers—all those interested in experimenting with locally grown grain. Space is limited: we have room for 12 participants per session. Cost for the course is $100, which includes breakfast and lunch, a handout on best
baking practices, and samples of flour made from locally grown wheat and ancient grains. A limited number of scholarships are available for students and for farmers who are interested in developing on-farm bakeries.

For more information, go to the event website. To register or apply for scholarships, contact Elizabeth Dyck by email or phone – 607 895 6913.

(Sponsored by Greenmarket/Grow NYC & OGRIN and funded, in part, by the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program)

Centre County Black Hops Unit – Homebrewer’s Update

(From Jens Breffke)

Hello home brew fellows –

I have to send out an email because my forum post got barely noticed for the last three weeks. As we agreed on at the last meeting, we’ll have a stout meeting in January and the idea is to have that at Elk Creek Cafe + Aleworks in Millheim. Please check the thread and reply so I can make a reservation accordingly.

Unrelated to our official meeting I will brew a Nugget Nectar Clone next Sunday, December 16, starting around 10.30am. If anyone is interested joining me – even just for little while – you are more than welcome. I am living in Park Forest close to Otto’s. I will send my address to those expressing interest. (Email Jens)

Friends & Farmers Cooperative – December 7, 2012 Update

Friends and Farmers LogoThis past Wednesday night (Dec. 5) the Steering Committee had a lively pot-luck. Among other things we received a report from two of our members who have been working with the Rural Economic Development Clinic at Penn State’s Law School.

After a bit of discussion to understand our options for incorporation, we voted and decided unanimously to accept their recommendation to move forward with incorporation as a Subchapter T Cooperative. We will begin the application process in January with continued support from the law clinic.

At our previous meeting, we had a long Skype call with Glenn Bergman, General Manager of Weaver’s Way Co-op in Philadelphia. It was incredibly valuable and left us all excited about our prospects.

One thing that became obvious from both of these meetings is the need to recruit steering committee members with financial, legal, and real estate backgrounds. If you or someone you know can help us fill these needs please volunteer to join us on the Steering Committee by writing to us. In particular, we have an immediate need for a Treasurer. Current Steering Committee members are willing to support this position, but we need a more qualified lead.

Thanks very much for your continued support! Have a wonderful December!

Happy Valley Time Bank Update – December 5, 2012

(From Sean Morgan)

I’m happy to announce that the timebank’s press release has been submitted to over a dozen local publications and TV stations!

I’m so happy that the whole community will now have access to the time bank. But the new members will only be captivated if there is an active community that has posted offers and requests.

It takes only minutes to post offers and requests. If you’re unsure what to post, email me: tell me what your passions are and I can guide you in the right direction. If you’re concerned about overcommitting during the holiday season, don’t worry, you are not obligated to do a transaction.  You are the one who decides when, where, and with who you will exchange. Post now, wait until you have time to exchange.

At this stage in the project, your participation is absolutely vital.  You will shape the time bank and the community at large.  Thank you so much for recognizing the potential in this project and taking the steps to actualize it.

Risk and Responsibility: Farming, Food and Unconventional Gas Drilling

Published November 12 by Independent Science News:

Synopsis: Potentially, large portions of the globe could be drilled for unconventional gas deposits. Such unconventional gas drilling (Hydraulic Fracturing, fracking) poses potential threats to the food supply in such areas. Threats include leaks from impoundment ponds, from damaged or defective well casings, and from illegal dumping resulting in potentially uncontrolled spread of synthetic fracturing chemicals, radioactivity and other waste fluids. If irrigation and animal drinking water supplies, or the soil itself, become contaminated then so will the animal or plant food chain. When the industry is using non-disclosure agreements to conceal harms, and the burden of proof lies with the public, how can science support food and farmer safety under such conditions? Michelle Bamberger and Robert E. Oswald call for hydraulic fracturing to be “severely limited or banned” until scientific and transparency issues can be resolved.

The authors are a former Veterinary Researcher and a Professor in the Department of Molecular Medicine at Cornell University, Ithaca, NY.

News from FracTracker Alliance

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