San Luis Valley Local Foods Coalition
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~ NEWS & EVENTS 2019 ~

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Coalition News and Events 2019

We are pleased to share past news and events about our Coalition Efforts and Community happenings!

VRFH Solstice Open House Social - December 20th, 2019

Solstice Open House Social
Join the Valley Roots Food Hub
in Mosca on December 20th, 2019
for an exciting Open House Solstice Event!
View Event Poster »»

GIVE LOCAL THIS HOLIDAY SEASON - Colorado Gives Day - Tuesday, December 10th, 2019

Greetings Local Food Champions,
Colorado Gives DayWe are nearing the time of year where gratitude and giving takes center stage. The San Luis Valley Local Foods Coalition thanks you for your continued support for our work. As 2019 wraps up, we will be sharing our accomplishments of the past year along with video introductions to our impactful programs (follow us on Facebook and Instagram to learn more).

Colorado's largest day of giving, Colorado Gives Day, is taking place on Tuesday, December 10th, 2019. When you donate to the LFC, you are helping to create an equitable local food system that restores the health of the people, community, economy and ecosystem. Your donation supports the LFC's impactful programs, including the Valley Roots Food Hub, Rio Grande Farm Park, Cooking Matters, the MoKi, and Local Foods, Local Places. None of this work would be possible without donors like you - thank you!

CSU Meat School - October 30th - December 11th, 2019
For producers of beef, bison, lamb, pork, goat and other meats

Colorado State University Extension is offering its first ever Meat School, designed to expose producers to the skills and resources required to produce high quality meat, develop long-term successful relationships with processors, and identify and access new markets for improved farm profitability.

October - December 2019, we are offering the Meat School in Routt County, in San Luis Valley and La Plata County. The presenters each evening are online but each regional class is guided by a facilitator, and participants will be able to attend the course in person (for community building and networking) or participate online. Each evening's session will last for 2 hours, from 6 pm to 8 pm, and will be taught by experts in livestock production, processing, and/or meat marketing for direct markets. Note that we will be covering ruminants and swine, but not poultry. View Class Schedule »»  Register for Classes »»

RMFU Annual Convention - November 22-23rd, 2019
Open Registration starts in October, Save the Date!

RMFU Annual ConventionJoin Rocky Mountain Farmers Union for their Annual Convention held in Greeley, Colorado featuring delegates, workshops, guest speakers and more! Join discussions on policy and consider becoming a delegate!
View Convention Poster »»   Register for Convention »»

Boyd Learning Garden Pathway Build - October 26th, 2019

Volunteers Needed - Join in for a day of Path Building featuring catered lunch by LFC's Mobile Kitchen (MoKi).
View Event Poster »»

Farm Play at Rio Grande Farm ParkNature Play Area Grand Opening - October 23rd, 2018

Join us at Rio Grande Farm Park from 5-7pm for a ribbon cutting at our brand new playground, graciously funded by The Colorado Health Foundation. In addition to our amazing new nature play area, we will also have: Live music from the band Sweet Radish, Free local food from the MoKi, And a hayride with Alan Simpson. We can't wait to see you there! RSVP Here »»

SLV Farmers Union Harvest Event - October 5th, 2019

Join the San Luis Valley Farmers Union for Harvest Hootenanny at the Rio Grande County Museum & Cultural Center featuring officer elections, potluck, silent auction, music and more! View Event Poster »»

Crestone Coalition Meeting - October 4th, 2019

Crestone Coalition MeetingCommunity Welcomed!

Join Us on Oct. 4th as Crestone Baca & Local Foods Coalition
meet up for a Potluck Coalition Meeting
at Little Shepherd of the Hills Episcopal Church.

View Event Poster »»   View Meeting Agenda »»

Colorado Proud School Meal Day (SLV) - Sept 18th, 2019

Three schools from the San Luis Valley are featured in this video for their efforts on Colorado Proud School Meal Day. Ortega Middle School, Sangre de Cristo school District, and South Conejos School District.
View Article written by Abe Rosenberg sharing this experience »»

Colorado Proud School Meal Day was a fun educational learning event to educate children about healthy eating.
We enjoyed visiting the school districts and celebrating Colorado Agriculture!

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Summertime in the Valley! - Community Cookout at Boyd Park! - June 29th, 2019

Community Cookout at Boyd Park
Join us for a Cookout at Boyd Park on Saturday in Alamosa for a community gathering to discuss initiatives that Revitalize the Rio is working on. Learn park plans, connect with community members and have fun with family and friends. We look forward to seeing you! View Event Poster »»

RSF Social Finance Seed Fund Supports Beginning Farmer & Rancher Resource Guide - June 26th, 2019

The San Luis Valley Local Foods Coalition is honored to have received a Seed Fund grant from RSF Social Finance along with seven other incredible organizations! Check out the recipients at RSF Seed Fund »». The RSF Seed Fund will be utilized to help construct a bilingual farmer and rancher resource guide geared toward connecting beginning and minority producers to important resources they might otherwise be unaware of.

Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Youth Camp - June 10-21st, 2019

RMFU Youth Camp 2019The RMFU Youth Cooperative Leadership Camp is just around the corner. Registration is open with a discount available if you register before April 30th. Visit the RMFU registration page at Cooperative Leadership Camp »» If you have any questions about camp details, please reach out to the RMFU Director of Education / Camp Director - Jennifer Bahr. View the brochure to learn more about the camp at 2019 Camp Brochure - help us get the word out!

The RMFU summer camp is offered June 10-14 for grades 2-6 and June 17-21 for grades 7-12. The camp is hosted in the mountains near Bailey, CO about 40 miles from Denver.

Additionally, we are looking for individuals interested in becoming part of the Camp Staff team. If you are interested or know of someone who may be interested in attending camp, please let Jennifer, know.

Boyd Community Garden - Summer 2019 Garden Nights - May 7th, 2019

Neighbors meet your garden! Garden Night Kick Off Event - May 7th, 2019   View Event Info »»
Tuesday night neighbors of the Boyd Community Garden at 11th and State Avenue are invited to a garden work/fun party to kick off the Valley Educational Gardens Initiative (VEGI) community garden nights which will take place every Tuesday night throughout the summer and early fall. View Press Release »»

Boyd Community Garden Nights

Generosity On Tap - Supporting La Puente's Food Bank Network - April 27th, 2019

In conjunction with Hunger Education week please join us in supporting the Food Bank Network of San Luis Valley!
View Event Poster »»

Generosity On Tap -Food Bank Network

SLV Field and Farm TourSLV Field and Farm Tour Press Release - April 23rd, 2019

Mosca, CO - The Valley Roots Food Hub is co-hosting a Farm & Field Experience in May for beginning and expanding farmers and ranchers in partnership with the Colorado Tourism Office, Rocky Mountain Farmers Union and Guidestone Colorado. The tours will take place on Saturday, May 4th from 9 am to 3 pm, at Rio Grande Farm Park, Elliott Farms, and Colorado Farm Brewery/Colorado Malting Company. For more information and pre-registration (required), please visit View Full Press Release »»   View Event Poster »»

Guidestone Agri Summit - April 19th, 2019

RMFU Youth Camp 2019AgriSummit is a day-long event highlighting opportunities for networking, discussion and learning focused on local food production and agritourism in the Heart of the Rockies region. Held at Salida' SteamPlant Event Center on Friday, April 19th. AgriSummit 2019 will also include a lunch featuring local foods, an early season Farmers Market, a silent auction and a FREE Community Open House, complete with local libations tastings, a seed swap, a silent auction and live music by local bluegrass band Smeltertown!

Who Should Attend?

  • Producers and Landowners interested in:
    - starting an Agritourism business as part of a diversified business model
    - who currently have agritourism events on their land and would like to share their model or learn how to strengthen
      their current agritourism activities.
  • Beginning Producers interested in learning more about resources and techniques for producing food in the Central CO Rockies region.
  • Local Food Enthusiasts & Community Members interested in learning more about local food initiatives and opportunities.

New this Year! Join us Thursday, April 18th in the afternoon for a Farm Tour highlighting area farms, ranches and agritourism sites, followed by a Meet & Greet with CO Commissioner of Agriculture, Kate Greenberg. Pre-registration is required for the Farm Tour, but the Meet & Greet is free and open to the public, to be held at Soulcraft Brewing in Salida from 5-6:30pm. Kate will give an address at 5:30pm.

Follow these links for more information on the event:
Program & Schedule of Events »»
Registration Details »»
Farmers Market & Market Vendor Information »»
Community Open House »»
Thursday Farm & Ranch Tour »»

La Puente's Hunger Education Week - April 7-12th, 2019

Hunger Education Week is a series of events designed to increase awareness about the realities of hunger in our communities and what we can do to help. The Valley Educational Gardens Initiative (VEGI), workshop will feature a week long of events at various locations including a Crop Walk, Indoor Gardening, and a Cooking Matters Tour. View Event Info »»

Hunger Education Week

8th Annual VEGI Kick-Off Fundraiser Dinner - March 28th, 2019

VEGI Kick-Off FundraiserJoin us on Thursday for the annual VEGI Fundraiser Dinner at The Barn at La Manzanilla to show your support for the Valley Educational Garden Initiative. Their mission is "Fighting hunger by sowing the seeds of education, nutrition, and community through connection with gardening while growing fresh produce for community hunger relief efforts". Your support will help provide educational garden spaces and programs for youth across the San Luis Valley. View Event Poster »»

Celebrating a "Taste of Place" in Alamosa - The Arrival of Local Foods, Local Places Program 2017-2019

LFLP ProgramOur local restaurants are the anchors of our community. We appreciate your hard work to provide exemplary social and dining opportunities in our community.

We would like to invite you to a convening of Alamosa restaurant owners and Alamosa Local Foods Local Places Stakeholders. In 2017 and 2018 the stakeholders worked on a strategic plan to invigorate our economy with a "Taste of Place" where tourists and local families can enjoy the taste of our regional farm produce on their plates when they dine.

The Local Food Local Places plan ended up with 18 strategies #1 of which was to vitalize our downtown with the story of the food on the plate as it relates to our agricultural region. We also have several others goals to support the Alamosa Farmers Market, walking and biking, local art and local music and recreational activities. You can receive a copy of the plan in its entirety at the meeting.

We invite you to our workshop from 9:30am to 11am in the Alamosa City Council Chambers on Wednesday February 27th located at 300 Hunt Avenue in Alamosa to explore the topic of Alamosa as a destination community known for its farm to table, local "terroir" - the characteristic taste and flavor of our region expressed in our restaurants.

We will feature the Valley Roots Food Hub - our own region's aggregation and distribution service for family farms in the SLV and Southern Colorado present to share what the VRFH has to offer as well as gather input from the experts - the restaurant owners and managers. A convening of Alamosa restaurant owners and Alamosa Local Foods Local Places Stakeholders to explore the topic of Alamosa as a destination community known for its farm to table, local "terroir" - the characteristic taste and flavor of our region expressed in our restaurants. For more information call 718-539-5606.
View the Local Foods, Local Places Community Action Plan »»

State of the Basin SymposiumState of the Basin Symposium - February 23rd, 2019

Join us at Adams State University for the first Rio Grande Basin Symposium for an informative day of talks and interaction to explore solutions and paths toward a sustainable water future. Featuring keynote speaker Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser and various SLV water leader presenters.
View Event Poster »»   Register for Free Event »»   Watch Symposium Keynote Talks Video »»

RMFU - Farmers Union Gathering - February 12th, 2019

Meeting is open to the community. Join us for dinner, updates about local, state, and federal ag issues, and discussion with community members, farmers and ranchers. View Event Poster »»

Community Seed Exchange - January 26th, 2019

Seed ExchangeJoin us on Saturday from 2-4pm at ASU Nielsen Library for the annual Seed to Seed Community Seed Exchange event. This is an opportunity to promote the growth and abundance of SLV-hardy plants. Meet your local gardeners, obtain seeds for spring planting, and share what you have with others. There will be some educational displays and demonstrations. Bring seeds to share or donate to the Seed Library, network with area gardeners and farmers, and enjoy an afternoon of community and gardening connections! Proceeds will benefit the Community Garden at Mountain Valley School in Saguache and the Student Greenhouse Project in Moffat. We look forward to seeing you!

LFC Coalition Meeting - January 24th, 2019

SLVLFC Coalition MeetingFriends,
We are very happy to be coming through with our promise to bring our Coalition meetings around the San Luis Valley. This January we will partner with Cactus Hill Farm to come to La Jara at the Conejos County Nursing Services from 6-8 pm on Thursday January 24th for a potluck and meeting.

We want to hear from you! Bring ideas, thoughts, solutions and local challenges to share and discuss.
Hear from local producers and agricultural experts enjoy a potluck and discuss local agricultural issues.
Please join us! View Event Poster »»   View Community Meeting Info »»

LFC Coalition Meeting Outcome in Conejos
Agricultural producers from Conejos County gathered in La Jara Thursday night, along with the San Luis Valley Local Foods Coalition to discuss local agricultural issues. This meeting, hosted by LFC and Cactus Hill Farm, was an opportunity to further foster the relationship between agricultural producers and the work of the Local Foods Coalition. The Local Foods Coalition serves the entire San Luis Valley and works to create an equitable local food system in the San Luis Valley in partnership with producers and consumers. Community ideas, producers' experiences, and challenges inform the strategic direction of the Coalition as it seeks to support community farms, increase farm-to-table practices and educate the public about the advantages of buying local. The many projects of the LFC include Farm to School in partnership with all 14 school districts of the SLV, the Rio Grande Farm Park, the Cooking Matters education program as well as the Valley Roots Food Hub which has helped connect food producers with markets around the San Luis Valley, Salida and other parts of New Mexico and Colorado.

LFC Jan 2018 Meeting
LFC Jan 2018 MeetingLFC Jan 2018 MeetingLFC Jan 2018 Meeting

UCCS Grain School Workshops & Forum by University of Colorado Springs - January 18-20th, 2019

UCCS Grain SchoolGrain School is a one-of-a-kind annual event that brings together educators, health professionals, scientists, farmers, bakers, millers, brewers, distillers, chefs, food citizens, students and community leaders. UCCS's tiered approach to teaching and learning as both a university and community course, provides an expansive platform for lively and inspirational exchange.

Grain School Workshops. For 2019 we expand our curriculum and hands-on workshops and further explore production systems and grain at the confluence of water, soil, climate, and people to create health, community and prosperity. We also focus in on indigenous grains, grain literacy in schools, economics and infrastructure needs, the roles of women and beginning farmers in grain production, the artisanship of working with grain in food, and the establishment of a regional Grain Chain organization! View Workshop Info »»

UCCS Grain ForumGrain School Public Forum, a free event open to the community.
We invite you to open your mind regarding grain at the confluence of diversity, inclusion, and sustainability with an evening program that kicks off with Grain School 2019 loaves, brews, and spirits in celebration of Grain Schools' artisans!

The purpose of the Public Forum is to reach out to the Front Range community to share the celebration of heritage grains and mobilize momentum in re-establishing heritage and ancient grains in the Rocky Mountain West. The public forum is filled with surprises! With keynotes, artisan panels, and experts from across the US, the Forum sparks interest through tasting the deliciousness of freshly baked sourdough heritage grain breads, pizzas, brews, and spirits. During the talks, our graduate students serve little samplers of Grain School's creative dishes in concert with topics highlighted in the forum!
View Forum Flyer 2019 »»

Growing Your Farm Business presented by Guidestone - January 12-13th, 2019

Guide WorkshopGuidestone is hosting a local workshop in partnership with Rocky Mountain Farmers Union, CO Tourism Office, SLV Local Foods Coalition and the Valley Roots Food Hub. The event is a Vision Course and Scaling Up Workshop in La Jara on January 12th and 13th, and it's free! In order to attend the workshop, you must pre-register by January 9th.
Register for Workshop »»  View Event Info »»

Visit the Guidestone website for more information on the workshop and what to expect.
For anyone looking to start or expand their business, this will be a great opportunity! Please spread the word!

"Eating is an Agricultural Act." - Wendell Berry

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