SLV Local Foods Coalition
The San Luis Valley Local Foods Coalition develops local networks, educates the community, and promotes programs and policies that create an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable local food system for the San Luis Valley Region.
2013 Reflections and Opportunity to Support the LFC with a Tax-Deductible Donation
2013 has been such a good year for moving along the path towards the creation of a sustainable/regenerative local foods system here.
It has also been an intense year for defining the kind of community we would like to create in the San Luis Valley and specifically in Alamosa. Not everyone agreed on the tactics, but as several brave folks stepped forward to stand against the "good ol' boys network" a conversation has risen up that matters. I feel proud to stand with those plaintiffs - as a "good ol' gal". Thank-you Kiko, Paul Tigen and Steve Harris for your tireless work.
We are so happy to have Melissa Emminger on board to teach nutrition and cooking skills to families. She brings a great sense of purpose, commitment and integrity to the Local Foods Coalition.
Julie Gallegos has continued as a strong asset, bringing her plethora of experience and wisdom to the table - raising funds and spearheading events that continue to grow this amazing movement across our vast valley.
Elaine Patarini was named "Creative Director", a name that fits her abilities to a T. We are grateful for her gifts.
Together Elaine and Karen Lemke forged a new relationship with young people at Adams State University. I was skeptical of allocating our precious resources for the "Empowering People Through Food" AmeriCorps proposal that Elaine and Karen put forward. However, it proved to be one of the most important moves we have made. Our promise is in our youth.
Abe Rosenberg was an amazing Healthy Habits Chef and "MOKI Worker". He created food for the soul. His ginger carrots went right to my love chakra and stayed there.
Renee Mackey shared her grace and love at the MOKI in Alamosa. She reminds me that food is God's love made edible.
Kenny Fischer rounded our crew at the MOKI with cooking skills that excited the palate. He also shared his vast permaculture skills at the Alamosa Community Gardens. I learned why my dog habitat needs to be moved out of Zone 4 and into Zone 1 of my home permaculture.
As the Executive Director, I was very excited to partner with the New Mexico Farm to Table folks who are 10 years down the road from us. This summer we hosted a 3-day "Local Roots" Farm-to-School conference together with almost 100 in attendance including many tribal representatives. The Monday tour to San Luis hosted by Bernadette Lucero and Eugene Jaquez inspired us and reminded us what we have here.
It was during this conference that Brendon Rockey offered us an amazing opportunity to realize the crux of a local foods system in the San Luis Valley. A spot at their White Rock Specialty Packing Plant in Mosca for lease, to operate our much needed food distribution center. This "spot" is roughly 4,000 square feet of commercial kitchen and warehouse space complete with offices, a walk-in freezer and cooler. The Rocky Mountain Farmers Union is supporting the effort with dollars for a business plan that has a projected completion date in January 2014.
It was in 2013 that we created our first annual fundraiser - "The Harvest Moon Soiree",
An outdoor farm dinner that featured a 100% SLV Grown feast and music. It was a profound moment for me when I was able to make the ChokuRei YaknCracker manager understand that we did not need to meet the UNFI deadline for orders. There would be NO orders. All food came from the producers of the SLV. Oil from Sauder Farm butter, Sweet from Grandpa's honey, and everything in between. It was profound. It was delicious. Thank-you to Mary Sue Morgan for the amazing appetizers and Yak N Cracker for everything else.
I am also very thankful for our board. 2013 has been a defining year. We appreciate and also have lost Elena Miller ter Kuile, Gena Akers and Jay Young from our board. Thank-you for your service. We gained Megumi Sugihara, Mary Ellen Huss and Trudi Kretsinger. Thank-you for stepping up for this important role. We are especially grateful for our President Katy Baer. Katy is a tireless, capable and humble leader of this work. The role of San Luis Valley Local Foods Coalition Board President is no small role and Katy takes it seriously. We also appreciate the commitment of Luette Frost, Karen Lemke to continue their service on the board.
Another blessing is the in-kind donation of office space and utilities by the Integrated Nutrition Education Program spearheaded by Luette Frost in the heart of the SLV at 613A Fourth Street.
We give thanks to the Rocky Mountain Prevention Research Center for the donation of the mobile kitchen "MOKI" to the Local Foods Coalition. Also for the amazing academic-community partnership between the LFC and the RMPRC for the ongoing food audit of the SLV. We are wrapping up the producer survey and are excited to report the results in 2014.
A final thanks goes to LiveWell Colorado for their support of our community's vision. Without you this work would not have been possible.
Finally - I would like to appeal to those of you with enough income - who would benefit from a tax-deductible donation. The San Luis Valley Local Foods Coalition and its work to make good locally-raised whole food - accessible, affordable and available to the families of the San Luis Valley - makes a great donation.
www.slvlocalfoods.org has a donate button or a check to:
P.O. Box 181
Alamosa, CO 81101
Happy New Year! The dream is attainable.
Love Liza Marron - I appreciate you all so much.
4th Annual SLV Seed Exchange
Join Us! Part 1 of Grow A Garden Series on Saturday, February 15th, 11am-3pm at Crestone Charter School in Crestone featuring locally grown seeds from the Southern Colorado Region along with Seed Saving 101 - The Basics of Biodynamics Workshop. San Luis Valley Gardeners & Farmers will be sharing their homegrown seeds and gardening info!
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The Healthy Garden Expo
Join Us! Part 2 of Grow A Garden Series on Saturday, February 22nd, 11am-3pm at the East Campus of Adams State University in Alamosa featuring various how-to info such as food plant growing, preparation, nutrition, and preserving along with Organic Gardening 101 & Micro Greens Workshops. A valley learning event for all!
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Rio Grande Healthy Living Park
For the latest information on what is happening with the Polston property and the Rio Grande Healthy Living Park go to the new blog or facebook page.
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Additional Valley News
"Position for Cooking Matters School Coordinator Wanted"
The Cooking Matters School Coordinator works closely with the SLV Local Foods Coalition Nutrition Education Director/Cooking Matters Satellite Coordinator (from here on LFCNED/CMSC) to support all aspects of the program in accordance with state and national goals and policies, and the core values of the San Luis Valley Local Foods Coalition. The Program Coordinator's main role is to coordinate Cooking Matters' food skill-based nutrition education programming in the San Luis Valley, primarily in public school settings, as supervised by the LFCNED/CMSC. The Coordinator will also act as a Cooking Matters Colorado representative in the community. View full job description pdf document. We look forward to speaking with you!