Harvest Mayhem Reflections

993400_517160645056954_1718555665_nThis past Sunday, September 15th, was our first ever Harvest Mayhem potluck/fundraiser celebration. Planned to be held outside at the Sustainable Renton Community Farm in NE Renton, the event was intended to highlight the bountiful harvest of the farm, to raise funds for Sustainable Renton, and to enjoy a community celebration outdoors. Well, the weather had other plans for our day. Starting with gloomy, ominous skies, and quickly turning to a rainy downpour featuring thunder & lightning, we were forced to either cancel the event in progress or quickly come up with a backup plan.

Fortunately, we are surrounded by many generous, flexible people. Celebration Foursquare Church, whose land the community farm sits on, graciously offered to open the doors to their portable building. And our musicians, Ron Stillwell and Callista Salazar, were very patient in their willingness to wait out the storm and to move inside. And then, in the process of moving tables, food, equipment, etc. indoors, all of the attendees who came out for the event stayed with us throughout this whole process. We are very lucky to be a part of this community.

1236070_517160968390255_922981176_nThe event itself consisted of a raffle, live music, a potluck, and garden tours. Our raffle featured homemade gift baskets (with items like pickles, jam, beets, and many other tasty creations), gift certificates ($50 from both Blossom Vegetarian and Red House, $20 from Torero’s, $25 from Liberty Cafe), and 1-1/2 hours of electrical work from Steve Randolph.

579658_517160801723605_521994230_nLive music was provided by Callista Salazar and Ron Stilwell. Callista is an emerging artist who played her owned compositions.

1236680_517161441723541_452374713_nRon, who has been performing for years, played a mix of some classics and newer material. Both performers helped to brighten the day, and were very warmly received. Steve Melle generously donated his sound equipment for the event.

The potluck was a definite hit-so many delicious appetizers, soups, snacks, and desserts. All were enjoyed with gusto by everyone in attendance. Many of the dishes featured in season, locally grown produce.

Before the weather sidetracked things, many attendees were able to wander the grounds of the farm to see the wide variety of flora that have been growing there this season. Some of the bounty included: amaranth (a deep, dark, gorgeous shade of red), red chili peppers, sunflowers, massive pumpkins, kale, chard, broccoli, turnips, radishes, and so much more.

While we certainly would have had higher attendance with better weather, we were still able to raise just under $100 from our raffle. Thank you to all who purchased tickets and donated items to the raffle, and to everyone who came out to celebrate with us. New friends were made, and community was strengthened.

We look forward to doing it all again next year (although we’ll probably aim for August for better weather prospects). Thank you!

Harvest Mayhem! & More Sept/Oct Happenings

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Now that Summer is passing, and Fall is approaching, Sustainable Renton is really kicking into high gear with the harvest season in full swing. We have a number of workshops, meetings, and events over the next couple of months that we’d love to share with you. We’ll be having our largest event ever this Sunday, September 15th-Harvest Mayhem. Read all about it and our many other events below. We look forward to welcoming you!

All events listed are held either at our office or the community farm.

Sustainable Renton office: 970 Harrington Ave NE, Renton WA, 98056

Sustainable Renton Community Farm: 11840 148th Ave NE, Renton WA, 98059

Events

Sun, Sept 15 – Harvest Mayhem. Location: Community Farm. 4-7pm. This is a fundraiser and community potluck event, complete with gardeners and their beautiful friends and families. Entertainment includes live music with local musicians Ron Stilwell and Callista Salazar, and a raffle for items like baskets of preserves, pickles, and coupons to local businesses! This is a community potluck-please bring something yummy to share. A bonfire with s’mores will round out the evening. Come tour the farm, meet the board members and participating gardeners, play in the sand box, eat, and be merry! All funds raised will support Sustainable Renton and the Community Farm.

Fri, Sept 27 – Meaningful Movies: Occupy Love. Location: Office. 7pm. We will be watching the film ‘Occupy Love’. This film follows the Occupy movement over a year’s period of time and shows the lasting effect this movement has had and continues to have on political and social life. This event is FREE but donations are greatly needed and appreciated.

Workshops

1009839_509327289173623_962192451_nFri, Sept 13 (TONIGHT!) – Seed Saving Workshop w/ the Urban Food Warrior, Caitlin Moore. Location: Community Farm. 6pm. Have you ever wondered what this seed saving business is all about? Caitlin Moore, founder of the Olympia Seed Exchange, will teach some basic seed saving skills to get you started saving seed in your garden or farm. She will cover basic terminology, techniques, and some in-field how-to’s in this two hour workshop. There will be a $5 fee for this workshop. No one will be turned away for lack of funds.

Thurs, Oct 3 – Soap Making Workshop w/Sustainable Renton Community Farm Manager, Lara Randolph. Location: Office. 7pm. We will make a vegetable base soap. Everyone will leave with a bar of soap to take home and enjoy. There is a $5 supplies fee paid at the time of event. No one will be turned away for lack of funds.

Date TBD – Winter Gardening Workshop w/ Cascadia Edible Landscapes. Location: Community Farm.

Meetings

Wed, Oct 2 – Renton Food Co-op Steering Committee. 6:30: potluck; 7pm: meeting. Come and get involved in helping to plan and pursue bringing a locally owned and operated food co-op to Renton. Your energy and ideas are needed!

Thurs, Oct 10 – Sustainable Renton Board. 7pm. Our monthly board meeting to oversee the operations, management, and happenings of Sustainable Renton. We are always open to new input, and have space available for additional board members if you are interested.

Of course, you can follow us and our different projects over on Facebook. Click any of the following links to ‘like’ our various pages.

Sustainable Renton

Renton Food Co-op

Sustainable Renton Community Farm

Meaningful Movies of Renton