Picnic at the Brickworks

Today, I was super lucky to be able to attend the 5th annual Picnic at the Brickworks!  It’s an event put on by Slow Food Toronto and Evergreen Brickworks, held at the Brickworks.  It’s a chance for farmers/producers and chefs to partner up and showcase amazing Ontario produce.

It’s a fundraiser for both Slow Food Toronto and Evergreen Brickworks, focussing primarily on fundraising for children’s gardening and cooking programmes that they run/support.  Since the Blake School garden (aka the new garden that we started up this past spring) was largely funded by Slow Food Toronto, they invited a few of us to join the picnic and to talk about the Blake garden project.  We had a board with pictures and info, a few sample lesson plans, and some of the veggies harvested from the Blake garden.  We made some great connections with some teachers, parents, and a few other great folks.  It was especially exciting to meet a recently retired teacher who is keen on developing curriculum-linked garden activities!  She’s more than willing to take a look at the list of activities that I’ve been working on recently and the curriculum links I’ve made, and give me feedback and help develop that list.  I’m excited!  It was also great to connect with a number of the Slow Food Toronto folks, some of whom I’d “met” over e-mail, but it was great meeting them and spending some time with them in person.  Some really great, inspiring and positive folks!

Showing off our Blake School garden info board at the Brickworks Picnic

Some of the veggies from this year's garden, that we were displaying at the picnic. They'll be turned into soup with a grade 1 class this week!

It was a chilly day, but still wonderful.  We had a chance to wander around to all of the different stands and sample lots of delicious local food: stuffed mushrooms, Lake Erie trout on kale, tomato sandwiches with Vicki’s Veggies tomatoes, apple chips with sheep’s cheese and apple jelly, sorbet made of locally grown hardy kiwi (did you know there’s a type of kiwi that grows in Ontario?), basil meringue with tomato filling (grown by the amazing folks at Matchbox Gardens)…  A few of us hanging out by the Slow Food info area were also lucky enough to try some pawpaw, another tropical looking and tasting fruit, but which is native to this area (these pawpaws were grown in the front yard of one of the Slow Food steering committee members. YUM!  We picked up some seeds, and we’ll see if/where we can grow them next spring…  Thanks to Slow Food Toronto for including us in this wonderful event!

Happy growing (as long as the weather permits…)!

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