(“Melange” courtesy of Sylvia Neely…)
January 22 – Boalsburg Winter Farmers Market Preview
(From Jim Eisenstein)
Here are some interesting items you can find among the many products available at Tuesday’s Boalsburg Indoor Farmers Market, in the Boalsburg Fire Hall at 113 E. Pine St., open 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
- It may be the dead of winter, but you can still get vegetables. Jade Family Farm will have fresh kale and a variety of root vegetables, and Ardry Farms will have cabbage. Beiler Family Farm is selling maple sugar produced from trees on their own farm — you can’t get more local than that!
- You can still get fresh, raw milk from Clover Creek, but starting next month, they will not be bringing it (their animals need a break), so you only have a week or two get some. Stone Meadow farms has a wide variety of pastured raised beef and raw milk cheeses available. If goat cheese is your passion, try Byler Goat Dairy’s raw goat milk garlic and herb chèvre.
- Bill Calahan will have lots of fresh roasting chickens, just the thing for a winter’s evening meal. Speaking of winter, Tamarack Farms has a nice selection of pure wool hats and scarves. Bee Kind Winery announces the return of its delicious Pink Catawba wine, which features “a delightful balance of cotton candy like sweetness and the citrus of pink grapefruit.”
- If you need a break from cooking, consider Eden View’s grass fed beef vegetable soup, sprouted breads and bagels, and fruit smoothies. You’ll also find Wild For Salmon’s full array of products and Fasta Pasta’s hand made fresh pasta. Way Fruit farm will bring seven varieties of apples, cider, and baked goods.
All in all, a pretty impressive selection for January! If you want to hear singing and playing as you shop, come between 4:00 and 5:30, when Chris Lee will be performing.
January 25 – PSU Student Sustainability Leadership Summit
“…Students are taking further initiative in creating a sustainable Penn State with the formation of the Inaugural Student Sustainability Leader Summit, which will be held on January 25th from 10:15 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Heritage Hall section of the HUB.
The formation of the leader summit comes after years of largely unsuccessful attempts to organize and mobilize many of the student organizations that share a strong focus on green and sustainabile progress at Penn State.
Dozens of groups ranging in membership and influence are working towards similar objectives, albeit often in different fields of expertise. The Sustainability Summit is intended to serve as a forum for student leaders to engage with each other, strive to better organize and share resources, and foster debate and conversation about the direction of Penn State’s sustainability policies…
February 7 & 8 – Way Fruit Farm Kids Bakery Workshop
Calling all kids ages 4 to 12! Do you like to bake or would you like to learn? Following the huge popularity of the Christmas-time bakery workshops, a second series of Kid’s Bakery Workshops will be held Thursday, Feb. 7 and Friday, Feb. 8 from 5-7 p.m. in the Way Cafe. You will get to measure, mix, stir and taste-test your way to from-scratch, fresh-baked chocolate goodies for your family just in time for Valentine’s Day. You can enjoy cookies and storytime while our goodies bake and even take home a container of goodies and a homemade Valentines Day card.
Parents: Cost is $10 per child. Call our farm today (692-5211) to to register your child/children for the Thursday or Friday Bakery Workshop by Wed., Feb. 6th. Based on the previous workshop response, please be aware there there is limited space and reservations are made on a first-come, first-serve basis. The day of the event, you can drop your little bakers off at the farm store no earlier than 4:45 p.m., pay the registration fee and then browse the farm store, or head home for some much-needed peace and quiet. Please pick the kids up at 7 p.m. sharp. We will provide supervision for your children while they are in the kitchen…To be sensitive to allergies, no nuts or peanut butter will be used in the recipes that evening, however, please alert us to any other food allergies your child has and we will do our best to include that in our planning of recipes for the night.
Other farm news: Apples, fresh-pressed apple cider, citrus, local cabbage, potatoes, onions and more are still available at the farm. We still have plenty of great, tart baking apples such as Ida Red and Granny Smith, along with Gala (limited quantities), Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Fuji, McIntosh(limited quantities). We also have everything you need to prepare a warm, homestyle dinner tonight including: local beef and pork roasts, locally-made pasta & spaghetti sauce, local cheeses, and more! Our deli and Way Cafe have potato and macaroni salads, fresh-sliced deli meats & cheeses, homemade strombolis, quiche, To-Go deli sandwiches & salads, homemade soups and so many more delicious choices. Stop by today; we’d love to serve you soon!
February Bicycle Tire Changing Clinics at The Bicycle Shop
- The Bicycle Shop at 441 West College Ave. is offering tire changing clinics throughout the month of February. Space is limited to twelve people per class. Classes scheduled for February 7, 21, and 28 from 6 – 7:30 p.m. Call the shop at 238-9422 or stop in to schedule.
Feb. 17 – Climate Change Rally in Washington DC
(From Ed Perry)
For the first time ever, we have a president who made tackling global warming a major priority for his administration. On February 17, a bus-full of climate change activists is leaving State College and heading to Washington DC to attend a mass rally, to send a message to the president that we want him to back up his inauguration talk with action.
Some of you have questioned whether making this trip is worthwhile. How can one person make a difference? Our history is replete with examples of individuals making a difference. Think back to the civil rights demonstrations, the protests against the Vietnam war that brought down a president, and the first Earth Day demonstrations, where we told Congress we had had enough of polluted air and water, and as a result, Congress passed the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, and Endangered Species Act. Those mass demonstrations changed the future of our country.
Global warming is the defining issue of our day. That is what the February 17 rally is all about. There are buses or vans leaving from State College, Scranton, York, Lancaster and Philadelphia. This will be the largest mass demonstration on global warming ever. So be part of history and join us on the bus. It’s our kids and grandkids who will pay for our inaction. If you want to organize a van or bus, or need help locating a ride, feel free to contact me.
March 17 – Mushroom Cultivation Workshop in Bellefonte
March 17 2013 Cultivation Workshop at Teamster’s Local 8 Union Hall, 2225 High Tech Rd, Bellefonte, PA, near the University Park Airport. We will be inoculating shitake logs and Bob will show us how to cultivate oysters with a toilet paper roll. All paid members will get a shitake mushroom log and some oyster mushroom spawn to take home.
USDA Microloans Available for Small Farmers, Veterans and Disadvantaged Producers
- Details of the new USDA Microloan Program, offering loans up to $35,000.
Grants Available for Humane Farmers
Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT) is now accepting grant applications for its Fund-a-Farmer Project! The Fund-a-Farmer Project provides small grants to qualifying humane farmers who need assistance in improving the welfare of their farm animals. Grants of up to $1,500 will be awarded for projects that
- help farms transition to pasture-based systems
- improve the marketing of their humane products, or
- more generally enrich the conditions in which farm animals are raised.
Working, independent family farmers that raise pigs, broiler chickens, laying hens, dairy cows and/or beef cattle are eligible to apply for any of the three types of grants. Projects involving goats and sheep are only eligible for marketing grants. Applications must be submitted online or postmarked by May 1, 2013 for awards made in August 2013. View guidelines and apply online at www.fundafarmer.org. For more info, contact Lisa by email or phone (773-525-4952)
News from the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture
- PASA E-Newsletter – January 17, 2013 Edition, including February 6 – 9 annual conference registration info and coverage of the 2013 Sustainable Ag Business Leader Award winner: Tuscarora Organic Growers Cooperative.
News from PASA’s Good Food Neighborhood
New blog post highlighting 2013 workshops offered by Sustainability Schools across the state:
- Greener Partners (Collegeville)
- Dickinson College Farm (Carlisle)
- Quiet Creek Herb Farm (Brookville)
- Spring Creek Homesteading (State College)
- Eastern PA Permaculture Guild (Lansdale)
- Home Grown Institute (Philadelphia)
- Jennings Environmental Education Center (Slippery Rock)
- Pennypack Farm & Education Center (Horsham)
News from Shavers Creek Environmental Center
- Shaver’s Creek E-newsletter – January 21, 2013 Edition, including information about upcoming events and Summer Camp registration.
Rebel Towns – CELDF’s Rights-Based Organizing Covered by The Nation Magazine
- Nation story about the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund, which helped State College organizers draft the Environmental Bill of Rights adopted by voters in 2011, and helped Ferguson Township organizers draft a similar ordinance, adopted by voters in 2012 and now under legal attack by the township supervisors.
Taproot Kitchen Letters of Support
Thanks to Jim Eisenstein, Unpaid Farmhand at Jade Family Farm, for Letter #2:
“My grandmother barely had enough food to eat when she was a child in Poland. She never wasted any food, and I have always been bothered by food waste. Much of this waste is avoidable: take a look at food trays in Penn State dining halls.
Consumers, thanks to Department of Agriculture “food quality” standards, expect produce to be perfect. One bad spot on a tomato or a blemish on a beet means we cannot sell it. Every year, the amount of such produce is substantial. I find myself bringing home baskets of tomato “seconds” and “thirds’ and freezing them or making sauce.
But there is too much for me to process by myself. A community kitchen would provide an opportunity to process this wasted produce efficiently and working together and sharing the results. The limited amount of pure, organic tomato sauce I am able to produce by myself, in my ill-equipped kitchen, is fantastic. During the tomato season alone, I have enough seconds to bring for at least eight weeks. It is relatively simple at harvest to separate seconds into separate containers and bring them back to State College.
More than just tomato seconds would be available for processing in a community kitchen. There are seconds on most vegetables, including peppers. Sometimes, we lack the labor to harvest everything, and with some volunteer help in harvesting, other produce that currently goes to waste could be processed and shared in a well equipped community kitchen.
So the benefits of having a place to work with others to use food that currently goes to waste are substantial…”
More letters welcome; our goal is to collect 20 to 30 letters by April 30. Send letters by email or snail mail (156 West Hamilton Ave. State College PA 16801):
- What would you do in the kitchen?
- How many hours per week, per month or per year would you cook or bake in the kitchen?
- What special features or equipment would be most important for your kitchen work?
- Any other community kitchen ideas you have.
Relocalization News in the Centre Daily Times
- Localization initiatives are thriving– a roundup of the last six months of community resilience-building, published in the CDT on January 19, 2013.
Job Opening in Winfield
IMMEDIATE OPENING on a large farm in Winfield, PA for a person who loves animals and is experienced caring for them, including horses and many other varieties, as well as exotic animals. Live-in position (separate quarters) includes the proper care of the animals, taking care of the grounds, exercising the horses and maintaining the farming balance. The caretaker must be experienced, trustworthy, have a valid driver’s license, and references are required. Call to arrange for a visit/interview at 570-374-5406 or email resume and qualifications.