“Everybody who eats food” is invited to A Taste of the Endless Mountains, which will be held at the Troy Sale Barn in Troy, Bradford County, on Saturday, Oct. 17. The second annual celebration of local entrepreneurs and agricultural viability will be held from 10 am to 2 pm and is open to the public. Admission is free.
A Taste of the Endless Mountains was developed last year as a collaboration of the Endless Mountains Heritage Region (EMHR), The Bradford County Ag Coalition, and the Bradford County Conservation District as an extension of the Buy Fresh Buy Local program.
The event features locally produced food and locally prepared dishes. Guests will have a unique opportunity to sample and purchase goods from area farmers, restaurants, caterers, crafters and other ag producers. Guests can enjoy tasty snacks, get an early start on Christmas shopping, and stock up their pantries in one stop.
The variety of products available will include maple syrup, honey, candles, vinegar, hydroponic lettuce, pumpkin soup, apples, eggs, hot pepper jelly, artwork, cutting boards, herbs, goat cheese products, recycled sweaters, and an abundance of fall produce.
Vendors will be set up inside the historic Troy Sale Barn, which is undergoing an extensive renovation with help from EMHR and other supporters. The goal of organizers is to help local residents make a personal connection with the growers and products they bring to market.
Event coordinator Nicole Harris, who serves as Environmental Education Specialist at Mt. Pisgah State Park, sees A Taste of the Endless Mountains as a great way to showcase the region’s rich agricultural heritage, to highlight the concepts of food security, and to promote healthier lifestyles.
Harris said that organizers want people to better understand where their food is produced, how it is produced, and how it gets from the field to the table.
“We are too far removed from our food sources,” she stated. The primary focus of the Buy Fresh Buy Local program, which is managed through EMHR, is to foster relationships between consumers and farmers, she added
In addition to offering samples, Harris noted, vendors will share helpful growing and harvesting hints, recipes, and other knowledge to instill confidence in consumers who want more garden fresh foods in their diets. The art of food production has been lost on current generations who have become accustomed to standardized food served in restaurants and packaged foods available at grocery stores.
“Some people have no idea what to do with a whole chicken out of the meat aisle, when all they have purchased before are boneless breasts of a uniform size and weight,” Harris cited as an example. “And how many people would think to make their own squash or pumpkin soup? It so easy.”
Students from the Norther Tier Career Center Culinary Arts Program will serve pumpkin soup on Oct. 17 and tell guests how they made it. “These high school students are sharpening their culinary skills and making something that is much better than you would find in a store,” Harris remarked.
Vendor space is still available, and there is no fee for vendors to participate in A taste of the Endless Mountains. Instead, they are asked to provide samples for the public or donate door prizes for the event. Interested producers may call Harris at 570-297-2734 for more information. To learn more about the Buy Fresh Buy Local program, readers can log on to www.endlessmountainsheritage.com and click on the BFBL banner.