BRATTLEBORO -- Strolling of the Heifers will host "A Celebration of Vermont's Organic Farming Pioneers" at the Latchis Theatre on Sunday, Nov. 10, from 4 to 6 p.m.
The event features an on-stage moderated discussion with farmers who were the subject of a photographic essay created by farmer/photographer John Nopper and Susan Harlow, along with a lobby exhibit showcasing regional CSA farmers.
Moderated by former Vermont secretary of agriculture Roger Allbee, the discussion will feature Jack and Anne Lazor of Butterworks Farm, Westfield; Joey Klein of Littlewood Farm, Plainfield; Howard Prussack of High Meadows Farm, Putney; and Paul Harlow of the Harlow Farm, Westminster.
Nopper and Susan Harlow's photo essay, "Plowing Old Ground," consisting of black and white photographs and text, has been exhibited at the Stroll's Farm Art show at the Works Bakery Café last June, as well as several other venues. The photos will be shown on-screen during the event.
"These farmers truly broke new ground when they got started in the 1970s and 80s," Allbee said. "All of Vermont was originally farmed organically, of course, but virtually all farms had turned to chemical pesticides and fertilizers. These organic pioneers learned by trial and error how to restore the soil and return to natural methods of farming. That's what makes them pioneers."
The discussion will cover not only the history of the organic revival, but the future: how organic farming fits in with the new movements around sustainability and resilience, and what new generations of organic farmers can add to what the pioneers launched.
CSA's are community-supported agricultural ventures. CSA members or subscribers pay at the onset of the growing season for a share of the anticipated harvest; once harvesting begins, they receive weekly shares of vegetables and fruit.
In the lobby before, during and after the discussion, a number of regional CSAs will exhibit, offer samples, and provide information about their winter and spring/summer farm share programs.
Among the participating CSA farms are: New Leaf CSA, Robb Family Farm, Circle Mountain Farm, Akaogi Farm, Wild Carrot Farm, Rambling Brook Farm, Hillside Springs Farm, and Guerrilla Grown Produce.
Admission is free, though there is a suggested donation of $5.
For more information visit www.strollingoftheheifers.com/our-events or call 802-380-0226.