June 2010 Issue
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Storms in late May knocked out power around the region and reminded many of us that our lives can be disrupted by the weather, even in the age of air conditioning and telecommuting. Farmers, of course, remember this truth every day. Dramatic fluctuations in temperature this spring--early warm weather, followed by freezing nights in May--led to some loss of fruit crops and scrambling by growers to protect vulnerable crops. Hot dry weather in late May required early irrigation. The rewards for all of this hard work accrue to all of us, manifested this month in strawberries, CSA share pick-ups, sweet new radishes, tender greens and more. We know it's summer because the list of in-season crops gets too long for a single sentence! Enjoy.


The CISA staff

2010 Local Hero awards
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2010 Local Hero award recipients
CISA is pleased to announce the selection of:
  • Dan Rosenberg of Real Pickles in Greenfield,
  • Joe Waskiewicz of J&J Farms in Amherst,
  • and Belle Rita Novak, manager of the Springfield Farmers' Market at the X
as the 2010 Local Hero Award recipients.

Get Locally Grown
If you haven't received your copy of Locally Grown: Farm Products Guide, CISA's annual guide to the 306 Local Hero farms and businesses, pick up a copy at a Local Hero retailer near you. We'll also be handing them out throughout the year at local food and farm-related events. Want to receive your personal copy in the mail? Be sure to join (or renew your membership in) CISA's community membership program at the Household level or above. The guide features profiles of the 2010 Local Hero awardees and includes a product seasonality calendar, a Local Hero farm and garden locator map, and information on the growth of the area's local food system.

CISA welcomes new staff member
We're delighted to have Sam Stegeman join the CISA staff. Sam will facilitate the PVGrows network and work on infrastructure research and analysis.

Mark your calendars for Taste the View
Circle Friday, September 24th on your calendar because that's the evening you'll be going to Taste the View, a sumptuous sampling of fresh local edibles from Local Hero farms, restaurants, food artisans and retailers. Sip fine wine and locally made spirits and ales. Enjoy live music and bid on wild and wonderful local goods and services. Invitations will be sent in August with discounts offered to CISA community members.

If you own a vacation home, operate a unique service or have a farm-inspired item that you are interested in potentially donating to the silent auction at Taste the View, please contact Jennifer at 413-665-7100.

Get your hat on!
You asked for it and we got 'em. Hats. Well, baseball caps to be specific. Complete with CISA logo on the front. One size fits all. Get your cap and other CISA items online at anytime. Our store is always open.

Marketing 101 guides available
CISA recently released our Marketing 101 Manual, a new resource for farmers based on technical assistance workshops held in the winter of 2009. Developing an effective marketing plan is a challenging, but necessary, component of running a successful farm business. This free manual should help.

How our garden grows!
We'd like to thank everyone--particularly Rob Ralston and Barry Steeves--who turned out on a wickedly hot Saturday in May to help us re-landscape our yard, as well as Bear Path Farm for the donation of compost and Martin's Farm for the donated mulch. An extra special round of applause goes to Llani Davidson, owner of Gardens for Change, for her hard work designing and overseeing the installation of the garden. If you are in the neighborhood of South Deerfield, swing by and see a great sample of Llani's work.

Photos by Rachel Chandler-Worth

Old Creamery returns to its cooperative roots
Alice Cozzolino and Amy Pulley, owners of long-time Local Hero member The Old Creamery, are turning the retail business into a cooperative venture. The store began as a dairy cooperative in 1886 with 143 dairies that produced more than 20,000 pounds of butter per month. Over the last 75 years it has been a restaurant and general store--and it has always been a vibrant community hub in the Hilltowns. A Coop Steering Committee is currently working with a wide range of volunteers to: conduct research, learn from existing cooperatives, assess the potential for financing and member support, and develop a business plan. To learn more send an email to info@oldcreamerycoop.net or write to 445 Berkshire Trail, Cummington, MA 01026 or call 413-634-5560.

Local Hero restaurants host Hollywood celebrity
Jane Lynch, the comedic actress who plays Sue Sylvester in the hit TV comedy Glee, and her partner Lara Embry chose Local Hero restaurants Bistro Les Gras and Blue Heron for the their rehearsal dinner and wedding, respectively, over Memorial Day weekend. Remember to think about Local Hero farms and businesses when planning your special event!

Photo from CISA file.
Economy of Food
The latest issue of Choices, an online journal, features a series of articles on the economics of local food. Articles include "Just What Does Local Mean?" and "Do Government Policies Grow Local Food?"

Resources for a Healthy Community in Hampden County
The Western Massachusetts Center for Healthy Communities has received a many new books and manuals related to farm-to-school, youth development and food, food security, and community food systems. The center's public health library is open to the public at 489 Whitney Ave, Holyoke, during business hours (please call to confirm 413-540-0600).

Memorial Garden Project at Smith Vocational
Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School in Northampton is providing a 10,000 sq. foot piece of land for an organic vegetable garden memorializing Paul Yeskie Sr. who died, along with his son Paul Yeskie Jr., in the Northampton arson fires last December. Vegetables grown at the site will be given to Meals on Wheels, an organization that the elder Yeskie supported with donations of vegetables from his garden. Bernadette Giblin, a relative of the Yeskies, is organizing the garden and is working with John Kelley, the school's Horticulture & Forestry Director, on curriculum to teach organic farming practices to students involved in the Future Farmers of America program. Presently, Bernadette is looking for contributions of time, energy, plants and more to make the garden a reality. For details visit Paul's Garden Memorial Project on Facebook or http://site.paulsgarden.net/.
Find out about workshops, farm festivals, film screenings, farm summer camps and other local farm-related events on the Events and Education page of our web site. Be sure to bookmark the page and check it often as we regularly update the page throughout the month. Here is a sample of what's happening in June.
  • Head to Orange on Saturday, June 12, for the Solidarity Saturday Tour at Seeds of Solidarity Farm to learn about the farm, solar greenhouses, biodiesel vehicles and sustainable practices that make this farm run.
  • Relax among the lavender on Saturday and Sunday, June 26 and 27, in Buckland at the Lavender Days festival at Johnson Hill Farm. Explore the lavender labyrinth, attend art and cooking workshops (hint, they cook with lavender), and talk to local lavender-inspired artisans.
  • For those of you planning ahead, Szawlowski Potato Farms in Hatfield will be holding a public parade to celebrate its 100th anniversary at 11am on Saturday, July 10.
Please do not take images or content to use on your own site or project without CISA's explicit permission. Please feel free to link to our newsletter. Archives can be found at www.buylocalfood.org.

Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture
is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Phone: (413) 665-7100