We Feed Vermont, We Feed the Planet

Hello world! Greetings from Vermont, USA!

Vermont...the land of lush green hills, the land of hope and community, and the land of love and appreciation for Nature's soil. The roots of agriculture reach deeply into the sandy loam of the northeast, and persist today. Vermont has the most farmers markets per capita out of all the 50 states of the U.S. The air is fresh and clean, perhaps painted with the sweet smell of freely roaming livestock. We take pride in our love of food, community, and friendship in the state and we proudly present to you, six Vermont delegates to We Feed the Planet!

The contingent of delegates is comprised of three farmers, a chef, and two Youth Network leaders. Meghan Stotko and Andy Paonessa own and operate Heartwood Farm in Northern Vermont; Maggie Torness is a small-scale vegetable producer of Burlington, Vermont; Elliot Diana, local youth chef and local foods enthusiast; our fair foods activist and advocate Evan Girard (guy on the picture); and Ann Cromley, the community outreach and nutrition education champion! Evan and Ann are the SFYN-VT leaders of their state, and have had a hand in rounding up the crew of delegates and coordinating events of fundraising for the delegation! Speaking of fundraising...let's see what is in the works on fundraising over in Vermont!

The words "Vermont" and "community" are synonymous. Sometimes it seems as if everyone knows each other already, and that all are friends, family almost! The amount of support, respect and love for the state and its people is incredible! To raise the funds to help the delegation land in Milan in October, and with the support of community at no shortage, the Vermont crew plans to get their whole state involved! How? Food, friends, fun, and music, of course!

The key is making the connections early, and telling everyone you can think of. Friends and family, partner restaurants and chefs, and even local and state government officials! There is no limit of people you can share the fun of the Youth Network with. In fact, the more the better! Let them know what we are all about! What is the Slow Food Youth Network? What is so special about We Feed the Planet and EXPO 2015? Who feeds the planet? WE feed the planet!

An event to take place in Burlington, Vermont will honor the hard work and dedication of the delegates with an evening of celebration at a local farming community hub, The Intervale Center! Focused on preserving the celebration of food and culture, the Intervale Center is the key gathering site for foodies of all ages! On a special evening in September, crowds will come by foot, bike, and maybe even moose, to feast at a lovely potluck-style dinner to accompany a main meal prepared by the VT delegates and local chef partners! The dinner will be an opportunity not only for fundraising for the group, but also for the community to meet the delegates and dine with them. News, updates, and happy times will be shared amongst the crowd, and will catalyze further interest in the Slow Food Youth Network of Vermont and as a whole.

This event will coincide with the running of our own local crowdfunding campaign, specific to helping raise funds for each delegate to attend WFTP. The involvement of social media and email will be crucial to the success of this effort! In just one week, the Slow Food Youth Network Vermont Facebook page received over 100 likes...social media works!

Stay tuned for more updates on delegate highlights and personal stories on the Slow Food Youth Network Vermont Facebook page and on their Twitter account! #SFYNVT

Peace and snails,

Ann