10th Annual Local Food Dinner

Janisse Ray photoUpdate 3/11/13: Tickets for the Local Food Dinner sold out in record time! Thank you for your interest in this event. Follow us on Facebook or Twitter for updates about other events and workshops! The Local Food Dinner is an event centered on celebrating food, farmers and community.  In addition to enjoying a wonderful meal made from ingredients sourced close to home, the Local Food Dinner hosts a farmers’ market and inspirational speaker. This year, Janisse Ray, author of The Seed Underground will be our dinner keynote. In addition to writing, Janisse is a naturalist and activist whose passion for seeds and their preservation echoes across the United States. Preceding the dinner event, the public is invited to an indoor farmers’ market showcasing the diversity of agriculture products and hand-crafted art within the Cumberland Valley and surrounding areas!

A variety of local cheeses at the Local Food Dinner.Saturday, March 23rd, 2013 Farmers’ Market: 2pm to 6pm in HUB Lobby (FREE & OPEN TO PUBLIC!) Dinner will be served at 6:30pm. Where: Dickinson College Holland Union Building (HUB), 28 N. College Street, Carlisle, PA Keynote Speaker: Janisse Ray, author of The Seed Underground Tickets for Community Members and Dickinson faculty/staff: $20 each Tickets go on sale on March 9th at 12:00pm through Brown Paper Tickets!

“If I get to feeling a little blue about our prospects, I’m liable to reach down one of Janisse Ray’s books just so I can hear her calm, wise, strong voice. This one’s my new favorite; a world with her in it is going to do the right thing, I think.”

Bill McKibben, founder of 350.org

Our 10th annual Local Food Dinner will please the palette and have you coming back for seconds!


Goat Cheese & Beet Salad Pear Salad Carrot & Butternut Squash Soup Mushroom & Farro Dish Chicken Pot Pie Beef Roasted Veggies Apple Crisp Cheese Platter

2010 Local Food DinnerHow to Purchase Tickets

Dickinson College students are offered the chance to purchase discounted tickets via a pre-sale organized by Students Interested in Sustainable Agriculture (SISA). Student pre-sale tickets are sold out. Contact SISA at garden@dickinson.edu if you are a Dickinson student who has questions about the Local Food Dinner.

Starting on March 9th at 12:00pm, tickets can be purchased online through Brown Paper Tickets. Tickets are $20 each. Although this event tends to sell out quickly, any unsold tickets will be available for purchase on campus in the Holland Union Building at 28 N. College St (corner of College and Louther St.): Monday-Friday, March 18th-22nd 4:30-6:30pm. We recommend that you call ahead to confirm tickets are still on sale. 717-245-1969. This year’s dinner will be a fundraiser for the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA) Arias M. Brownback Memorial Scholarship Fund, an “endowment designed to help youth and other developing farmers attend PASA’s Farming for the Future Conference.”  This annual conference draws a crowd of over 2000 and provides new and aspiring farmers with opportunities for further education, networking and deeper connections with the Pennsylvania sustainable agriculture movement.

Getting to the Local Food Dinner Map of Dickinson Campus – Holland Union Building is #16. The Holland Union Building’s street address is 28 N. College Street, Carlisle, PA, 17013. Directions to Dickinson Parking is available on the street and in campus lots. Carpooling is encouraged!

About the Keynote Speaker

Janisse Ray (Credit: Raven Waters)Writer, naturalist and activist Janisse Ray is author of four books of literary nonfiction and a collection of nature poetry. She is on the faculty of Chatham University’s low-residency MFA program and is a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow. She holds an MFA from the University of Montana, and in 2007 was awarded an honorary doctorate from Unity College in Maine. Ray has won a Southern Booksellers Award for Poetry 2011, Southeastern Booksellers Award for Nonfiction 1999, an American Book Award 2000, the Southern Environmental Law Center 2000 Award for Outstanding Writing, and a Southern Book Critics Circle Award 2000.  Ecology of a Cracker Childhood was a New York Times Notable Book and was chosen as the Book All Georgians Should Read. Ecology of a Cracker Childhood, a memoir about growing up on a junkyard in the ruined longleaf pine ecosystem of the Southeast, was published by Milkweed Editions in 1999. Besides being a plea to protect and restore the glorious pine flatwoods of the South, the book looks hard at family, mental illness, poverty, and fundamentalist religion. Essayist Wendell Berry called the book “well done and deeply moving.” Anne Raver of The New York Times said of Janisse Ray, “The forests of the South find their Rachel Carson.”Janisse Ray (Credit: Raven Waters)Ray’s second book, Wild Card Quilt: Taking a Chance on Home, about rural community, was published by Milkweed Editions in early 2003. The third, Pinhook: Finding Wholeness in a Fragmented Land, the story of a 750,000-acre wildland corridor between south Georgia and north Florida, was published by Chelsea Green in 2005. Drifting into Darien, a personal and natural history of the Altamaha River, was released in fall 2011. Her latest is a nonfiction books on open-pollinated seeds, The Seed Underground (Chelsea Green.)Her first book of poetry, A House of Branches, came out in 2010 from Wind Publication. Ray is also editor of In One Place and Moody Forest, and co-editor of UnspOILed and Between Two Rivers. She is anthologized widely. She has been visiting professor at Coastal Carolina University, scholar-in-residence at Florida Gulf Coast University, and writer-in-residence at Keene State College and Green Mountain College. She was the John & Renee Grisham writer-in-residence 2003-04 at the University of Mississippi. Ray attempts to live a simple, sustainable life on a farm in southern Georgia with her husband, Raven Waters. Ray is an organic gardener, seedsaver, tender of farm animals, and slow-food cook. She lectures widely on nature, community, agriculture, wildness, sustainability and the politics of wholeness.

NPR Marketplace interview with Kai Ryssdal: “The science (and business) of sowing seeds”

About the Local Food Dinner Attendees at the Local Food Dinner share in food and conversation at the all-local catered buffet.What better way to expose our students and local community to the vast array of resources that exist in the Cumberland Valley than to create a dinner made almost exclusively with local ingredients? Since 2004, the farm has collaborated with student organization SISA to help organize our region’s local food celebration. By contacting local farmers and working with the College’s Dining Services to develop a seasonally appropriate menu, we have succeeded in drawing a crowd of 250 each year for a feast that is one of a kind. Local Food Dinner MenuWe have been fortunate to have leaders like Ben Hewitt, author of “The Town that Food Saved” and “Making Supper Safe”; Anna Lappe, co-founder of Small Planet Institute and a widely respected author and educator, renowned for her work as a sustainable food advocate; Kim Tait, owner of Tait Farms food activist, and agricultural entrepreneur; Nina Planck, Farmers’ Market organizer, food activist, and author; Kim Seeley, PA Dairy Farmer, President of the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA); Anthony Flaccavento, founder and executive director of Appalachian Sustainable Development as keynote speakers. Our Local Food Dinner is held on campus in the Holland Union Building (HUB) Social Hall every spring.

Past Speakers Ben HewittMarch 24th, 2012: Keynote Speaker, Ben Hewitt was born and raised in northern Vermont, where he currently runs a small-scale, diversified farm with his family. He lives with his wife and two sons in a self-built home that is powered by a windmill and solar photovoltaic panels. To help offset his renewable energy footprint, Ben drives a really big truck. His work has appeared in numerous national periodicals, including the New York Times Magazine, Wired, Gourmet, Discover, Skiing, Eating Well, Yankee Magazine, Powder, Men’s Journal, National Geographic Adventure, and Outside. His latest book is Making Supper Safe: One Man’s Quest to Learn the Truth about Food Safety.  LA Times: “Frontlines of a Food Revolution” Ben Hewitt’s Website Anna LappeApril 9, 2011: Keynote Speaker: Anna Lappe, daughter of Frances Moore Lappe and international advocate on issues relating to “sustainability, food politics, globalization, and social change”.Anna Lappe founded the Small Planet Institute.   March 27, 2010: Keynote Speaker: Tim Stark, farmer and author of “Heirloom”, a memoir of over fifteen years of growing heirloom vegetables on Eckerton Hill Farm. The Examiner: “Successful Tomato Farmer Tim Stark Details the Ironies of his Job” Dickinson News and Events: 2010 Local Food Dinner April 4, 2009: Keynote Speaker: Lyle Estill, author of “Small is Possible: Life in a Local Economy”; “Biodiesel Power; the Passion, People, and Politics of the Next Renewable Fuel”; and “Industrial Evolution; Local Solutions for a Low Carbon Future”. Examiner.com: “Local Food Dinner to Feature Heirloom Tomato Guru Tim Stark”

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