Emily’s Post: Farm-a-Q!

For those who were not lucky enough to attend this past weekend’s Farm-a-Q, I would like to share how wonderful this experience was, and to highly encourage purchasing a ticket for this event next summer.

For those of you who may not have heard of it, Farm-a-Q is an annual community fundraising event that features and supports local food and agriculture. It’s in a different location every year and the main event is sampling locally sourced food while enjoying local beer and music in a beautiful setting. From the delectable locally-produced food made on site, to the talented (and adorable) four-man band performance by Mudhook, the organizers of this event have created an experience far beyond a trip to the local farm.

While hosted by Slow Food Seacoast and the Heirloom Harvest Project,  this event consisted of a collaboration between a dozen or so organizations with very similar goals: to build community, raise awareness about their respective groups, and protect the environment. I have listed below a few of the groups that I spoke with and learned more about, and provided links for those who are interested in reading further about what they are doing!

The Chef’s Collaborative is a nonprofit that both celebrates and connects local chefs and other food professionals to each other. By creating relationships between chefs and places like local farms, this organization is helping to develop a better food system. This is a national organization, with local branches like the one in New Hampshire that attended Farm a Q!

Southeast Land Trust is a nonprofit that supports and facilitates the legal conservation of land in Southeast New Hampshire. SELT highlights the important relationship between humans and nature, and the organization’s vision is to have conserved lands in every community. They are currently working to conserve Bodwell Farm, which is one of only five commercial dairy farms located in Rockingham County.

One interesting aspect of Strawbery Banke, a living history museum in downtown Portsmouth, is their horticulture center. This center focuses around gardening, food preservation, and the use of plants grown in Strawbery Banke’s many historic gardens. They presented the seed-saving collection at last weekend’s Farm-a-Q, which consists almost entirely of organic, edible seeds grown right on property!

Bedrock Gardens, located in Lee, NH, is a private property with two owners, who transformed this lot from farmland to about twenty acres of beautiful and natural gardens (starting in 1987). This area is open to visitors on the first and third weekends of every month. A nonprofit (that attended Farm a Q) has formed to help maintain this ethereal piece of property, which is constantly growing and supporting the current owners.

The host of this event, Dog Rose farm is a two-acre organic vegetable farm located in Lee, NH, that is operated by Glenn Preston and owned by the Barth Family. There is a large list of vegetables that they are currently growing, and CSA shares are available for purchase! I have seen this farm at the Portsmouth market, so it was great to be able to see where “all the magic happens”.

Seacoast Eat Local’s SAMM van made an appearance as well!

  • Slow Food Seacoast and the Heirloom Harvest Project were the main organizers; much credit goes to them for putting on such a successful event! For more information about this event and its’ organizers, click on this link below: https://slowfoodseacoast.com/sixth-annual-farmaq-june-25

This experience is just another example of how grateful I am to be welcomed into this amazing community of people, and learn more about the farming culture as a whole. Looking forward to the rest of an amazing summer!

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