FRESH Farm To Table Event At Lucia’s


Gathering at the table is always a good thing.  Last Friday I was able to have the opportunity to sit at Lucia’s gracious table at a Farm to Table Event supporting the movie, FRESH: New thinking About What We’re Eating.  It was an opportunity for me, a suburban mom and blogger, to learn a little more about the sustainable food and farming movement from some of the people who are living and leading it in the Twin Cities.


Lucia, of Lucia’s Restaurant (Minneapolis, MN) led the conversation.  Lucia is a leader in the local food movement and has worked with farmers for 25 years.  These farmers supply to her restaurant, which is know for it’s exceptional cooking.  She is passionate about local foods and so are the people she works with.


The conversation was inspiring.  Ben Hertz, of Cornerstone Rooftop Farms is working towards creating Minnesota’s first rooftop farms.  These rooftop farms show the possibilities of producing food on an urban rooftop and providing healthy food for the urban community around it.  His company is going to retro fit buildings for this type of urban agriculture.   The gardens will be providing produce to Lucia’s this growing season.


Gunner Lidden, the executive director of the Youth Farm and Market Project was also at the table.


The Youth Farm provides experiential education in every part of growing food in several neighborhoods.  The farms then support the community through building leadership in the youth, providing shares of food, as well as selling to restaurants.  Gunner shared that these opportunities provide youth a way to “explore their own culture in a way that is meaningful to them”.  Food gives these youths an opportunity to re-discover their culture and contribute in a healthy way to their community.  They are finding food can change a community.DSC_0193

Mary Bess Michaletz, shared about how what use to be a movement is now becoming a revolution.


She is interested in product development and distribution of local foods.  She also was enthusiastic about my home gardening considerations and offered the book Gaia’s Garden: A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture as a great resource.


There was conversation about food, community, cooking, and the sharing of meals together.  As someone shared at the table, working with good food in the community just “feels great”.


Beautiful produce and good food makes people healthy and happy.


Like any good conversation it left me with a lot to think about.  I cook healthy food a good part of the time for my family.  But, at times food is chosen out of convenience, rushed between events and eaten on the run.  I don’t think I’m peculiar.  I’m a mom of four kids trying to shuffle and orchestrate a family of six’s schedules.

But, there are ways I can make steps to making better choices.  I will consider my buying choices.  I will participate in a CSA this summer again, shop more often at my local Farmer’s Market and add some more pots of tomatoes and herbs to my deck.  I’m going to look into stealthily building a garden into my landscaping, since gardens and fences are not allowed in the community where I live.  I’m going to look into a local church’s available garden plots.  I’m going to drive a couple of times a month into the city to shop at markets that carry local and organic.  I’m not going to change all at once.  I’m going to add it into my life one step at a time.

Urban communities have their economic and land challenges.  Suburban communities have other challenges.  Thinking about what we value and talking about that is a good subject for any table.  The conversation brought us together last Friday and sent us home with a lot to chew on.


What do you think?  Do you think about where your food comes from?  How it is produced?  Do you think your choices affect your health and culture and world around you?  Take a chair, sit down and share your take with us!