Sunday, March 8, 2009

Upcoming Events

Community Roots, Healthy Food for All: A Panel Discussion on Food Justice

Tuesday, March 10, 2009
7 pm to 9 pm
Mercury Cafe
2199 California Street
Denver Co
$5 donation suggested

Food brings us together. The lack of food destroy the fabric of families and communities. How do we grow healthy food and community that reflects our cultural and family roots? How do we create a community-led sustainable movement toward local food and local economy? Join a discussion on how to create healthy, affordable food for all in the Denver Community. Transition Denver is sponsoring this event and panelists include:
  • Adrienna Corrales, Project Coordinator and Community Health Educator for Sisters of Color United for Education.
  • Akwe Starnes, an educator at CSU's Extension Program and an elder in our community that shares various reasons to move toward a raw plant based diet, its affects on the earth, its value nutritionally and within this economic climate.
  • Ashara Ekundayo, an award-winning producer, curator, media activist, social networking groupie, and the owner of BluBlak Media – a Denver, CO based independent production and consulting company.
  • Faatma Mehrmanesh sits on the Board of Directors of the Mile High Business Alliance and plans to change the face of business by opening a community owned and operated cafe in Denver’s own Historic Five Points Neighborhood.
  • Marilyn Meginity, proprietor of the colorful Mercury CafĂ© and passionate advocate for local foods and community.
  • Shannon Francis is the Indigenous Agricultural Instructor/Coordinator at Woodbine Ecology Center located in Sedalia, Colorado.

Intro to Neighborhood Supported Agriculture - Kipp Nash, Community Roots

Monday, March 16, 2009
6 pm to 9 pm
$25.00 Fee
Denver Botanic Gardens, Classroom B
1005 York Street, Denver, CO

Transition Denver is sponsoring this event, designed to present an innovative approach to neighborhood farming that involves the neighbors in the process. Kipp Nash has devoted three years to developing a unique way of bringing the Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) model to his South Boulder, Colorado neighborhood. Kipp utilizes the available land (often his neighbors' front and back yards) in Martin Acres to raise organically-grown produce, which is then sold to his neighbors in Martin Acres and in Farmer's Markets. Interest in this model of local food production and community development is growing (pun intended) like crazy and Kipp is one of the first to start sharing his project, dreams and ideas with others. To register, please email or call: David Greenwald at degreenwald 303-926-0503

National Ag Week, March 15-20
Colorado Celebrates National Ag Week March 18
1:00 p.m. Press Conference on the west steps of the Capitol in Denver

This month, Americans will celebrate National Ag Day on March 20. National Ag Day is about recognizing the contribution of agriculture in our everyday lives and the important role our local ranchers and growers play in the lives of those in our communities and around the globe.

An Educational Evening with Slow Food Denver and the Mujeres de Maiz (Women of the Corn) Project
Monday March 23
5:30pm - 7:30pm
Home of Elayne Gallagher
2001 Lincoln Street (triangle at Welton, 20th and Broadway - 2 1/2 blocks walking from 16th Street Mall)
No charge (Slow Food members and non-members invited!)

Slow Food Denver is sponsoring an open house given by two of its members, Jan Webster and Elayne Gallager, to learn about an exciting project they are working on in Chiapas, Mexico. Elayne is a board member of Starfish, a Colorado organization working with indigenous women in Guatemala and Chiapas, Mexico. The project is called Mujeres de Maiz (Women of the Corn) and the goals are to raise the production and the consumption of native organic corn and to improve the standard of living, dignity and nutrition standards of these indigenous women, their families and communities. Please RSVP to by Wednesday March 18.

3rd Annual Rocky Mountain Compost School
April 14-17, 2009
Cost: $495

The school is hosted by Colorado State University's Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, and includes four days of classroom and field instruction for large-scale composters highlighting issues of local and national interest. Certified Crop Adviser continuing education units have been designated for participation in Compost School. For specific questions or more information, please contact: Adriane Elliott, (970) 491-6984,

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Signs of Spring

When I was a little girl, my grandmother used to read me a story about the swallows of Capistrano -- how they left the little village every fall to migrate south, taking the sunshine and warm weather with them. Throughout the winter, the villagers yearned for the day the swallows would return, bringing back longer, warmer days and the promise of new life. In the story, the swallows finally come back after a long winter. The gardener of the local mission church rings the church bells to let the people of Capistrano know the swallows are back, and everyone gets together for a huge celebration to welcome the swallows home.

My own long winter is over.

January through March is the busiest time in my day job, and I have been consumed with that work. (Hence the long delay between postings.) We've also had family issues that have kept us busy -- a daughter with a medical emergency in Kansas City, and a medical scare with my Dad in Springfield, Illinois.

Last week, we had our own little harbinger of Spring.

We were in the midwest, visiting my daughter and then my Dad, in 30 degree weather; the grey skies pressing down; the snow dancing sideways on the highways in the wind -- and coldest of all, our fears for everyone's safety.

My parents have a huge holly tree growing by their front door. As we walked past it going to and from the hospital, I noticed that it was loaded with red berries -- a bold splash of color in an otherwise dreary landscape. As it turns out, our daughter is OK. Dad's OK, too. They fixed him up with medication and sent him home.

As we walked up to the front door, the holly tree was shaking, as if consumed by the holy spirit, and we could see that it was literally filled with robins -- fifty or more, maybe a hundred -- happily munching berries to celebrate their return to the midwest.

My family is fine. The robins are back in the midwest. We're back in Colorado and I have crocuses blooming in my garden.

The bells in my heart are pealing like laughter.

Just like the swallows, I'm back.