the irresistible fleet of bicycles

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VSDBF farm to table dinner


The Virginia School for the Deaf and the Blind (VSDB) Foundation and Allegheny Mountain Institute (AMI) have partnered together on an event to raise awareness related to the educational benefits of urban gardening and its impact to our schools and local community. The first annual “Farm to Table” dinner will be held on Saturday, August 22nd at the AMI Urban Farm at VSDB.

For additional information, please contact: Ellen Butchart

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northern va: action, adventure, exploration, tree crops talk this sunday.

Do you know what fruit and nut exploring is? It’s adventure, detective work, and historical perserverence all rolled into one in order to bring back valuable fruit and nut genetics thought to be lost. Did you know that in the early 1900s, citizen scientists were out and about in the landscape and forests, collecting prize specimens of fruits and nuts and breeding for local site adaptability along with pest and disease resistance? One of the leaders of this movement was J. Russell Smith, a notable Quaker, horticulturalist, author, agrarian and geographer from Lincoln Virginia. His writings have inspired many progressive farmers of our time, including the fruit exploring trio of Darr, Walton and Greenman, who have been looking and finding his genetic material in Northern VA. Come to hear the story of J. Russell Smith and the living legacy he has left behind in Northern VA. RussellSmithDayFlier_D3 (1)

Where: Goose Creek Friends Meeting House

When: Sunday, April 12th @ 4pm

Who: Alexander Darr, Pete Walton, Eliza Greenman

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the awful reign of the red delicious. #eatuglyapples

At the supermarket near his home in central Virginia, Tom Burford likes to loiter by the display of Red Delicious. He waits until he spots a store manager. Then he picks up one of the glossy apples and, with a flourish, scrapes his fingernail into the wax: T-O-M.

“We can’t sell that now,” the manager protests.

To which Burford replies, in his soft Piedmont drawl: “That’s my point.” Click HERE to read this GREAT article from the Atlantic.

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food freedom fest

coming up in September, and honoring Joel Salatin.

FFFMemeFood Freedom Fest Celebrates Local Food Hero
Farmers, foodies, politicians and others dedicated to advancing food freedom unite for a weekend festival in the scenic Shenandoah Valley of Virginia on September 5-6, 2014.  Organized by the Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense (FTCLDF), Food Freedom Fest is a fun, educational gathering for anyone who appreciates freedom of choice in food and agriculture. The funds raised will help defend the rights of small farmers and artisan food producers, as well as consumers and buying clubs.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA), under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), is trying to control all food regulation and poses a threat to the local food movement.  The September gathering is a meeting of people who see the benefit of a direct farmer to consumer relationship. This is relevant to anyone who wants to make a living off the land and keep the government out of their kitchen.

The aptly named Food Freedom Fest kicks off with the inaugural “Food Freedom Conference” starting with breakfast at the Stonewall Jackson Hotel in Staunton, Virginia. Emcee Kimberly Hartke will introduce notable speakers who will explore food freedom initiatives happening around the country. Delivering the keynote at lunch will be Congressman Thomas Massie from Kentucky who sponsored the two federal Raw Milk Freedom bills with considerable bipartisan support. Continue reading

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young & beginning farmer mixer!


On October 19th, local heirloom seed savers and worker-owned co-operative Southern Exposure Seed Exchange will be hosting a Young Farmer’s Mixer to facilitate an enriching community building experience, provide networking opportunities and have fun.  We want to provide young farmers and young farmer recruits with access to examples of financially viable business models for new farms, homesteading resources and land link organizations. We also want to facilitate connections between landowners who want their land in cultivation and land-less farmers.  There will be opportunity to link farmers with food justice organizations and illustrate how food justice activism can play into a small farm business. Continue reading

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apply for 2014 allegheny mountain school fellowship!

fellowsAllegheny Mountain School is seeking seven to nine inspiring individuals to participate in the fourth cohort of our 18 month fully-funded fellowship program.   Applications are available on our website,  The deadline to submit your application is December 15, 2013.  Interviews begin January, 2014.

Allegheny Mountain School (AMS) was founded in 2011 as a not-for-profit experiential fellowship program designed to serve communities in developing a more secure food system.  The fiscal agent for AMS is The Highland Center (THC), a non-profit organization located in Monterey, Virginia.
Our intention at AMS is to assemble a cohort of highly curious, hardworking individuals, with complementary skills and experiences, in order to create a cohesive and cooperative team for living, working and studying. Our goal is to build skills to help communities create a vibrant and accessible local food economy.

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harvest table farm seeks manager


The Meadowview Farmers’ Guild and Harvest Table Restaurant are currently accepting applications for the position of farm manager for the Harvest Table Farm. This position is a salaried and full-time position, and requires that the person occupy the residence at the farm. The position has three primary responsibility categories. First, to operate the 3-acre sustainable farm to grow produce in coordination for the needs of the Harvest Table Restaurant, and for selling at the Abingdon Farmers Market. Second, to coordinate and help organize occasional tours of the farm. Third, the farm hosts WWOOFers and interns on a seasonal basis, and short-term day volunteers, and the farm manager would be responsible for supervision of these workers.

Harvest Table Farm is located in Meadowview, VA on a rolling 3-acre plot about 2 miles from the restaurant. The job requires a person skilled in modern ecoagriculture, with a strong sense of the changing seasonal needs of a human-scale farm.

The position is  full-time, salaried and is open immediately.

A full description of the position is available HERE


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