Coalition News and Events
We are pleased to share news about our Coalition Efforts and to invite you to attend the many sponsored event happenings and meetings going on in the San Luis Valley and throughout Colorado. Be sure to check out our Social Media postings and Events Calendar below to plan ahead for upcoming events!
We are now featuring Buy Event Tickets by Brown Paper Tickets whereby we feature select events for ticket purchase via our Website or Blog. Look for the Buy Event Ticket icon accompanying an Event mention to reserve your attendance!
Rio Grande Farm Park (RGFP) Events
Stay in the loop on the wide variety of work days and events the RGFP puts on, be sure to visit their Facebook Page »» and their Website »»
The Rio Grande Farm Park commissions public artworks to be installed along the Rio Grande corridor.
View Press Release »»
Bikes and Bites
Take a tour by bike of your local community gardens around Alamosa! A family-friendly, fun-filled event to celebrate 4 growing spaces around town featuring local treats along the way to taste and try! The Tour will begin at the Rio Grande Farm Park, with bike decorating at 4:30pm and the tour commencing at 5:00 at the Farm Park. The tour will continue on to Adams State Campus Garden, the Alamosa Community Greenhouse, and Boyd Community Garden. Each garden will feature a locally-made dish, resulting in a progressive dinner for all to share! Bring your helmets and your hats for this unique garden by bike experience happening at the end of this month- tell your friends! View Larger Press Release »»
El Pomar Award
Press Release: https://www.alamosanews.com/article/el-pomar-slv-regional-council-gives-awards
From groups fostering children to dogs and from those promoting arts to local foods, a variety of San Luis Valley nonprofit organizations received funding from the El Pomar Foundation's San Luis Valley Regional Council on Tuesday.
The council provided $40,000 in merit grants to 11 organizations during a presentation ceremony Tuesday afternoon at the Valley Courier in Alamosa. Courier Publisher Keith Cerny and Dr. Tom Gilmore, retired Adams State president, were charter members of the regional council 14 years ago and are still serving.
The SLV Local Foods Coalition, on McClure's recommendation, received $2,500. Melissa Fritschka, who has been involved in the coalition's efforts for more than 10 years and in 2018 became a board member, explained some of the coalition's goals including getting local food in local schools, hospitals and restaurants and connecting children with their agricultural heritage. Efforts like Cooking Matters teaches nutrition to families, and the food hub is an aggregate and distribution center for local foods to go out to hospitals, schools and restaurants. The Rio Grande Farm Park is another successful component of the coalition, which assists small farmers. Fritschka said the coalition recently received $100,000 from U.S.D.A.'s Farm to School program to assist efforts to get local foods in the cafeterias of the Valley's 14 school districts.
San Luis Valley's Farm to School Task Force hosts Harvest of the Month Events alongside Food Service Directors - January 2018
In July of 2017, the LFC and several important partners received a USDA Farm to School Support Services grant to "grease the wheels" in making healthful SLV produce more accessible and feasible for Valley schools and pre-schools to procure. Since the onset of the grant the Task Force has worked with all 14 district Food Service Directors (FSD) in the San Luis Valley to begin overcoming barriers, including changes at the VRFH to lightly process vegetables, creating a Monday delivery route for schools, training FSDs in procurement through the hub's online portal, and working with FSDs to host engaging harvest of the month events in school cafeterias.
The Farm to School Task Force is made up of the Local Foods Coalition, Cooking Matters, the Valley Educational Gardens Initiative (VEGI), and the Integrated Nutrition Education Program (INEP).
View larger press release »» of our January event in Creede, and check out the Farm to School tab in our Projects section for other press releases.
Local Foods, Local Places
Many organizations and agencies in Alamosa are responding to the economic conditions and food security concerns facing many residents by increasing access to fresh, healthy food, strengthening the community's sense of place, and ultimately, enhancing the downtown area to promote local arts and entertainment, business, historic preservation, tourism, and local foods. In 2016, Alamosa requested assistance through the Local Foods, Local Places (LFLP)program to develop an action plan for promoting local food systems, and healthy, walkable, economically vibrant communities.
The goals of the Local Foods, Local Places program are to create:
- - More economic opportunities for local farmers and businesses.
- - Better access to healthy, local food, especially among disadvantaged groups.
- - Revitalized downtowns, main streets, and neighborhoods.
The Local Foods, Local Places program is supported by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), and the Delta Regional Authority (DRA). Alamosa was one of 23 communities across the United States selected to participate in the program in 2017. A Local Foods, Local Places Steering Committee was formed in Alamosa in preparation for this technical assistance award, and is comprised of a wide variety of community partners (see Figure 6). The Steering Committee expressed a desire to build on the communities' existing plans, which include the City of Alamosa Comprehensive (2017), the Rio Grande Farm Park Master Plan (2017), and the San Luis Valley Trails and Recreation Master Plan (2014).
In their request for Local Foods, Local Places technical assistance, the San Luis Valley Local Foods Coalition and the Local Foods, Local Places Steering Committee named better coordination among local and regional efforts, with specific attention to strengthening the local food economy, revitalizing Main Street, increasing involvement with the local arts community, increasing attendance at existing farmers markets, increasing food access and wellness, and strengthening the community's sense of place - as primary goals. Ultimately, the City aims to achieve its goal of improving the downtown area to become the center for local foods, local arts and entertainment, business, service, historic preservation, and tourism.
RMFU Chapter Meet & Square Dance 2018
Attendees enjoyed a community Square Dance at the SLV Farmers Union chapter meeting and potluck dinner April 7th, 2018 held in Alamosa at The Barn at La Mananilla.
Wild Seed Walkabout 2018
Community event on February 3rd, 2018 featured a Walkabout at Pikes Stockade park identifying plants and seed collecting.