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Jul 26, 2017
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Intelligent Content For The Food Fascinated
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SERVING SAINT LOUIS SINCE 1999
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Edible Weekend: 5 more food-filled events this weekend

Wednesday, May 18th, 2016

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From food fights to festive events al fresco, here’s five more don’t-miss events in The Lou this weekend.

 

1. Gluten & Allergen Free Wellness Event 2016
Come learn about wellness, nutrition and meal planning for those with food allergies and celiac disease. May 21 – 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., expotickets.blogspot.com 

2. CHOMP Regional Food Truck Festival & Family Movie Night
Enjoy an all-day festival of food trucks, live music, arts vendors and a family movie screening of Minions. May 21 – noon to 11 p.m., foodtruckfrolic.com 

3. IndiHop 2016
Explore more than 50 beers from local breweries and bottle shops in The Grove and Cherokee Street neighborhoods. May 21 – 1 to 7 p.m., Facebook: IndiHop 

4. Corks from Many Countries: A Charity Tasting
Explore wine, beer and spirits from around the world and our own backyard to benefit Immigrant and Refugee Women’s Program. May 21 – 2 to 6 p.m., corks.brownpapertickets.com 

5. Compton Heights – Compton Hill House Tour
Explore mansions owned by some of St. Louis’ best-known residents including the Magic Chef Mansion built by the inventor of the gas cook stove. May 21 and 22 – 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., comptonheights.org

 

Still hungry? Then sign up for Edible Weekend, our newly redesigned weekly newsletter, and get the weekend’s top four foodie events delivered directly to your inbox every Wednesday. Click here to sign up now!

 

 

The Changing Face of Farming: Elizabeth Parker of Kuhs Estate & Farm

Sunday, February 23rd, 2014

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My great-grandfather bought the land in 1915. Without telling his wife or his two kids, he bought the land, designed it, built the house, decorated and furnished it, then drove them up one weekend to surprise them. When he passed away, he bequeathed different shares of stock to the family. When my mom passed away, I was 57 percent stockholder.

One of the things my mom said to me as she was sort of saying goodbye and getting ready was, “You won’t be able to take this on. This is gonna take a huge life shift for you.” I was director of City Museum for three years and sales and marketing for Alive [Magazine] and living a very fast-paced life – very much a city girl. And when she died, everything in me just shifted. This is a legacy, and there is an implied sense of stewardship. This is what I want to do; this is what I have to do. This is my anchor, my home.

I want to make it a sustainable farm again. I want it to be a place of happiness and refuge and a sanctuary where people can come to rediscover their souls in the quiet time between cell phones and texting – to just go sit under a big tree in complete quiet or look at the confluence and let it speak to you. And it has become that.

It’s been a struggle. I think of it sort of like empire-building. I don’t expect it to be complete overnight, but it has a magic and a magnetism that draws people to it who share the same love and appreciation. I have friends who will come out and spend the night, so they can get up and be on a horse at dawn. Or people that drive from St. Louis to get fresh eggs, and then in the break rooms at work, they try to convert their co-workers by breaking open a store-bought egg versus a farm-fresh egg. That it means something to other people it’s not even convenient for – it’s really empowering and validating.

Anything worth having is hard, but it’s wonderful. And I’ve never been happier. My high heels are in a closet, and I’m in here with a pig.

To read about more women changing the face of farming, click here.
-photo by Carmen Troesser

The Changing Face of Farming: Jamie Bryant of Blue Bell Farm

Thursday, February 20th, 2014

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My husband’s grandmother, who was living at the farm, passed away in 2009. I think he always had it in the back of his mind to do something with the farm because his mother was an only child, and he was an only child, and he knew that it would be up to him at some point. So we started thinking about what it could be. We started a garden in the backyard in Glendale, and it grew and grew. I just loved being able to go out and pick fresh vegetables and herbs for dinner. It suddenly clicked that that made me really happy.

I started an apprenticeship at EarthDance in 2010. It was really validating that yes, I do want to do this and I can do this … to go from a backyard gardener to thinking about things in terms of crops. We decided that I would move up first and get things going. [My husband] Derek was still working in St. Louis, and he would come up on the weekends. The whole kitchen had grow lights hanging down with tables throughout. That’s how we started our seeds that first year because we didn’t have any knowledge of growing outside at that point. It drove Derek crazy because there was dirt on the floors. Thankfully, he wasn’t living here then because I think he would have really lost it.

I want to be in the dirt, growing and harvesting things. It’s not something that I see as labor or a chore. It brings me peace, and it’s meditative. I think it would have been really hard if we hadn’t found a group of young farmers that are like-minded in the area when we moved because it can be kind of lonely at times. In Chicago and St. Louis, I went out a lot. This is sort of an alternative life to that. I never would have imagined it, but I’m glad it happened. I have to remind myself of the beauty of it. When I was first here, I was in awe. I think you get in a routine where you lose that ability to stop and be in the moment for a little bit. Ultimately, raising a family here … in the air and just the freshness of everything … that’s what keeps me going.

To read about other women changing the face of farming, click here.
-photo by Carmen Troesser

The Changing Face of Farming: Connie Cunningham of Sassafras Valley Farm

Sunday, February 9th, 2014

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I’ve been here eight years. [My mom] needed help here at the farm, and she kept getting pneumonia. She was really tough, but she couldn’t keep doing all the work herself. She loved this farm. She wanted to die here. So I put everything in storage and came down.

I had an organic landscaping company in Chicago. I was there 30 years. I came down thinking it was going to be maybe a year, and, instead, all hell broke loose. The economy collapsed, and I had to close the business up there.

My mom … they gave her six to eight months, but she had no intention of going anywhere. They diagnosed her with lung cancer, and she lasted five years. She just kept getting healthier. So when I was caring for my mom, I started applying for grants. People [who] want to go into agriculture … well, don’t go into it without a couple hundred thousand dollars in your pocket. To try to start from scratch – it’s impossible. If you don’t know how to repair things, and you’re not sure about equipment … the fact that I can’t repair my tractor annoys me to death.

It’s been a baptism by fire, but I love it. This is what you have every day when you walk outside: wind chimes and sweet animals who depend on you. It’s beautiful. When there are hundreds of geese in the field and the Pyrenees are out, it’s very idyllic. Especially after 30 years in Chicago. That’s a long time to be in a concrete jungle.

To read about other women changing the face of farming, click here.

-photo by Carmen Troesser

 

 

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