Squash, potatoes, mushrooms, honey, beans, dips, syrups and flour will all be available for purchase in the Knutson Campus Center on Nov. 20.
Concordia College will host its fourth annual 100-Mile Thanksgiving, in association with local farmers and several student groups, with the goal of teaching the local community about the benefits of choosing local foods.
Local farmers will sell their products alongside booths designed by student organizations. Students, faculty and community members are welcome to attend.
One participating club is the Student Environmental Alliance. Visitors to their table will be able to grind local wheat into flour, which can then be used to make pancake mix for the participants to take home. Their event is free and they will also provide information about eating locally.
Gretchen Harvey, who organizes the event, explained how the 100 miles indicated in the event’s title represents an ideal.
“The 100 mile is not so much a rigid rule as it is a spirit of supporting local food,” she said.
Harvey explained that the event was originally started under the Food Working Group that was created by former Concordia President Pamela Jolicoeur. However, after Jolicoeurs’ death, Harvey was left to plan the event herself.
There have been several other farmers’ markets on campus, but these did not bring enough profit to the farmers, according to Harvey. They were discontinued this past year. Despite this, Harvey states that the 100-Mile Thanksgiving event has grown over the past four years. She is expecting at least nine vendors this year.
The vendors will sell a variety of products, including the ones listed above. Harvey said that there will also be organically produced seeds for growing.
The Student Peace Alliance will also participate in the event. They will host a table that discusses what the group’s student leader, Paul Zeller, calls food security. He said that food security is a result of community-based systems. These communities help to promote peace and safety for their inhabitants.
The Student Dietetics Association will host an informational booth with a variety of brochures available. These will include recipes and information about how to swap ingredients to create healthier meals. The students also hope to get visitors to pledge to have at least one local dish with their Thanksgiving this year.
Brooke Grussing, one of the leaders of the group, explained that local food is available even into the fall season.
“It’s actually pretty easy [to get] this time of year,” Grussing said.
Janet Paul, associate director of dining services, agreed that fresh produce is easy to find locally.
“If you make a concentrated effort to use local foods that you can find more than what you think you might be able to find,” Paul said.
Dining Services also plans to participate in this year’s event by offering a special deal. Students who purchase $15 at the 100 Mile Thanksgiving, or who purchase $15 at the Korn Krib on Nov. 20 or 21, will receive a free reusable Chico bag.
In addition to this, Chef Phil, a Dining Services’ employee, will be at the event to give hints and tips for your Thanksgiving meal.