Come to the Table Dinner: CHANGE Wrap Up


We hosted our first Come to the Table Dinner Series event of the year this past Tuesday at Cruz Blanca.  It was just what I needed on a cold and hectic January night. The theme of the evening was “change”, specifically what could each of us do to make change happen in our food system and in our communities. We had almost 100 attendees, who not only enjoyed delicious food and beverage, but great thought provoking conversations and talks.  

We had three guest speakers, the first being Chef Rick Bayless. He talked about the farm to table movement how we got here, where we are, and most importantly what can we do to keep it from going away.  He noted that the farm to table movement has reached the first rung of the ladder, but that there is much work to do to make it stable, to allow farmers to earn a living growing sustainably, to ensure that great sustainably produced food will be here for generations to come.  He suggested that if you are currently cooking one local sustainable meal a week, or buying one or two things directly from a farmer at a farmers market, could you make two meals a week or buy three or four things?  The little changes add up.

Our second speaker was Harry Carr, owner of Mint Creek Farm.  Mint Creek is a sustainable meat producer.  Harry spoke about how he got into farming, and the challenges and the rewards when you just keep pushing ahead.  He talked about community and love and how food grown sustainably and with love supports the community.  What more do we need than love and community.

Our last speakers were Katie Johnson and Clare Johnson from Slow Food Chicago and Joel Smith of Slow Food USA.  They talked about their belief that everyone should have access to high quality food produced in a sustainable and equitable way.  They have seen that gathering people around the table to enjoy a meal can open up discussion and spark change.  I know some of my most memorable times have been around a table with friends and family.

This event was hosted by Green City Market, Angelic Organics Learning Center, and WBEZ.  All of our organizations are working to better the Chicagoland community and beyond through food, farmers, community, and knowledge.  We were inspired by the energy in the room and the excitement to know that together each little change we make adds up and can bring about lasting change.  Thank you to all the guests who joined us for this first dinner.  We look forward to continuing the conversation throughout the year.

- Melissa Flynn, Executive Director

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