MIAMI COUNTY — Chefs, farmers, and consumers alike were invited to network in an evening of food, fun, and fellowship during the fifth annual Farm to Table Locavore Dinner on Thursday.
The event was sponsored by the Miami County Local Food Council, and was hosted at Fulton Farms.
Organized by food council committee members Kristie Fisher, Kelsey Fulton, Amber Lange, Lisa Myers, and Kelly Snyder, the Locavore Dinner is held each year to integrate Miami County residents with the food sources being produced within the area.
“It started as a way to highlight the local food and produce that’s available in our county,” said Miami County Local Food Council committee member Kelly Snyder. “We host local chefs as well, and the whole idea is to bring local chefs and local farmers together. Chefs might start using local ingredients to serve their customers. Also, folks who buy a ticket might just realize you can get all of this year-round in our county.”
Tickets were sold to more than 200 pre-registrants, more than any other locavore dinner in previous years.
“It started out pretty small with about 50 people attending, so it’s grown every year,” Snyder said.
All ingredients on the menu were sourced from within Miami County and surrounding areas, featuring goods from at least 35 contributing vendors.
“Menu items are from all over,” Snyder said. “We have desserts from Scratch by Justin. We have Susie’s Big Dipper Ice Cream. Rosebud’s is providing our dips. Magie Wonder Acres provided our pork.”
Moeller’s Brew Barn, of Maria Stein, Ohio, and Old Mason Winery, of West Milton, Ohio, were on site to provide locally produced beer and wine to ticket holders. Local band Rum River Blend was on site to offer live entertainment for a third year.
Previous locavore dinners have been hosted at the former site of Tin Roof in Troy, Indian Creek Distillery in New Carlisle, Lost Creek Memory Barn east of Troy, and Johnston Farm in Piqua.
“We really want to connect people to Miami County’s agricultural heritage, and highlight the whole county in choosing our locations,” Snyder said. “That’s why we picked Fulton Farms for the fifth year, because they’re such icons in the county for produce.”
“Kelsey and I have been going to the Locavore since it started,” said Fulton Farms proprietor Joe Fulton. “I always say, ‘Hey, when are we going to do one out at Fulton Farms?’ After Johnston Farm last year, the committee came to us, and said for the fifth anniversary they’d like to do it at Fulton’s. Of course, we were ecstatic and all about promoting local. It’s an opportunity for us all to get together, have fun, and keep money flowing within the community.”
“At Storypoint, we’re all about being a part of the community,” said Storypoint chef Ben Davis, who participated in the dinner for a second year. “Personally, I love the whole idea behind this event. Everything’s local — local chefs, local farms, local food. It gives everyone a chance to come in and enjoy the fruits of a lot of people’s labor.”
“The whole goal is always to introduce chefs and consumers to foods within our county,” Snyder said. “We’ve seen growth in that, and we’re very excited to see chefs begin to use those local foods.”
The Miami County Local Food Council is a non-profit organization with the mission to develop, support, and promote local food farmers and producers, and to improve public health and the economy by connecting citizens with healthy local foods.
For more information, find the Miami County Local Food Council on Facebook.