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Rogue Valley, Get Ready for Eat Local Week 2011

As September approaches, we’re reminded that it’s almost time for the Rogue Valley’s annual Eat Local Week. Of course, as local food fanatics, we love the festivities this week brings!

Organized by THRIVE (The Rogue Initiative for a Vital Economy), this annual celebration takes place September 9-18, 2011 and includes a menu of educational and culinary events, the Eat Local Challenge and the Rogue Flavor Dinner.

THRIVE is a terrific nonprofit that works to create a more sustainable local economy by promoting local businesses and agriculture, and helping local enterprises develop business skills. We’ve been a proud member and supporter for years.

For Eat Local Week, they’ve defined “local foods” as items whose ingredients are grown or raised within 200 miles of the Rogue Valley

Events take place from September 2nd to 18th, with the bulk occurring during Eat Local Week. Highlights include:

  • Farm tours and open farm days, including the Rogue Flavor Farm Tour on September 11th
  • Food & wine pairings
  • Food tastings galore
  • Tomato taste-off at Growers Markets
  • Cooking and food preservation classes
  • Local food menu specials at numerous restaurants, including Standing Stone
  • Talent Harvest Festival on September 11th
  • Rogue Flavor Dinner and Auction on September 17th

Our omelettes and quiche are Eat Local Week-friendly, made with eggs from our own free-range chickens!

The Eat Local Challenge is designed to encourage us to maximize the amount of locally-produced foods and beverages we consume, and all participants are eligible for a prize drawing as an incentive. You can participate at different levels:

  • Locavore Supreme- Eat only foods that are grown, raised or produced within 200 miles…no coffee, chocolate, non-local spices, etc.
  • Locavore- Eat only foods that are grown, raised or produced within 200 miles, and you can have your coffee, chocolate, non-local spices, etc.
  • Taster- Eat only foods that are grown, raised or produced within 200 miles for one meal per day
  • Sampler- Eat only foods that are grown, raised or produced within 200 miles during two meals throughout the week

It’s not difficult to make the commitment—even for the highest levels—since our regional producers offer a wider variety of items than most of us realize. To make it easy, THRIVE has created a guide for finding everything you need right here in the Rogue Valley. Check it out!

The Rogue Flavor Dinner and Auction on 9/17 at 6 pm tops off the week. It benefits THIVE and takes place at RoxyAnn Winery in Medford, which affords beautiful views of vineyards, farms and orchards. The Spanish-themed menu features five courses of locally grown food prepared by top local chefs, each using a local wine as an ingredient. This event typically sell out early, so call 541-488-7272 or visit THRIVE’s website to reserve your spot.

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