Nearly 50 hardy souls (some coming as far away as San Diego) braved one of the coldest nights (and traffic from the USC and Notre Dame game) of the year to attend PTF’s 4th Annual Harvest Gathering and film screening of THE LOCAL FOOD CHALLENGE. We had the privilege to be joined by the producer, Sunny Johnson – a single mother, wild edible plants instructor and nutritionist.   She brought with her “the local food challenge” t-shirts and buttons to be given out to those who brought a dish made with a least two local ingredients.   This former Minnesota resident and 6 others ate locally for an entire year. The short film interviewed the seven who took part in this challenge. They talked about what this challenge meant to them and how they went about meeting the challenge to eat local for an entire year.    Afterwards, Sunny fielded a variety of questions from the audience: how do you prepare dandelion, where can we get local flour, how do harvest the wild buckwheat (she makes flour with it), etc., etc.,. With her knowledge and wild harvesting skills we hope to bring Sunny back for a wild food series here at PTF. Stay tuned.

Speaking of food, the “100 mile” potluck spread was incredible – best ever! Kudos to everyone and a big “thank you” to all those who contributed. One couple brought a dish made entirely from things grown in their yard. Another couple brought a truly spectacular tray– a gorgeous pumpkin filled with soup and decorated with an assortment of greens and flowers. One family brought quite a spread providing homemade lime pie, persimmon cookies, mint tea and oranges all made with local ingredients from either their backyard or local area. I am sure there were/are more dishes to acknowledge so if I missed any, be sure to let me know.

With the fire going (thanks to Justin for continuing to stoke it throughout the night) guitar music, good food and great community spirit, it was truly a harvest gathering to remember.

Our gratitude to those of you who purchased a few items from our’Peddler’s Wagon’ table (also a thank you to JB for manning the table for us!). Also, joining us last evening was a volunteer fromHeifer International (one of organizations that we will donate 10% of profits from the PW to).   We plan to be a part of their tabling at our local farmer’s market… stay tuned for details.


  1. Brian says:

    When picking the organizations that you donate to, I encourage you to look at the overhead of the organization (amount spent on advertising, paying salaries, etc). This should be as low as possible so that most of your money goes to helping people (or animals). There are plenty of on-line resources to find this information, but e-mail me if you can’t find one.
    Last time I checked, Heifer had a pretty high overhead (>10%).