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Posts Tagged ‘lynchburg events’

This coming Sunday, October 17, at 3 o’clock in the afternoon plan to attend the apple and cheese pairing at the Old City Cemetery in downtown Lynchburg.  Apples and cheeses were hand-selected by Lynchburg’s own “Professor Apple,” Tom Burford, and Magnolia Foods.

Be sure to register in advance!  There are only 24 seats available for this unique and delicious event.  And while you’re there, be sure to enjoy the Cemetery grounds.

**On an exciting side note, our Herbs de Provence chevre will be served, paired alongside a wonderfully crisp Winesap apple!

 

Updated Wednesday 10-13-10: We’re sorry to announce that the pairing has been canceled due to lack of participants. 😦

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Lynchburg College is hosting a series of films that focus on food, energy, and culture. All films are show in in Hopwood Auditorim on LC’s campus beginning at 6pm and will be followed by a short discussion.  The films are sponsored by the Lynchburg College Transition Group and Alliance For Energy Awareness (AFEA) and are free and open to the public.  The follwing is from their website.

Food, Inc. February 25

Food, Inc. lifts the veil on our nation’s food industry, exposing how our nation’s food supply is controlled by a handful of corporations that often put profit ahead of consumer health, the livelihood of the American farmer, the safety of workers, and our own environment. Food, Inc. reveals surprising and often shocking truths about what we eat, how it’s produced, and who we have become as a nation.

Power of Community March 17

When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1990, Cuba’s economy went into a tailspin. With imports of oil cut by more than half and food imports cut by 80 percent, people were desperate. This fascinating and empowering film shows how communities pulled together, created solutions, and ultimately thrived in spite of their decreased dependence on imported energy. In the context of global Peak Oil worries, Cuba is an inspiring vision of hope.

Coal Country March 31

Coal Country is a dramatic look at modern coal mining. We get to know working miners along with activists who are battling coal companies in Appalachia. We hear from miners and coal company officials, who are concerned about jobs and the economy and believe they are acting responsibly in bringing power to the American people. Both sides in this conflict claim that history is on their side. Families have lived in the region for generations, and most have ancestors who worked in the mines. Everyone shares a deep love for the land, but mountain top removal mining, which has leveled more than 500 Appalachian mountains, is tearing them apart. We need to understand the meaning behind promises of “cheap energy” and “clean coal.” Are they achievable? At what cost? Are there alternatives to our energy future?

Idiocracy April 15

From Mike Judge, one of the creative minds behind Beavis and Butt-Head, King of the Hill and Office Space, comes an outrageous sci-fi comedy that’ll make you think twice about the future of mankind. Meet Joe Bowers (Luke Wilson). He’s not the sharpest tool in the shed. But when a government hibernation experiment goes awry, Bowers awakens in the year 2505 to find a society so dumbed-down by mass commercialism and mindless TV programming that he’s become the smartest guy on the planet. Now it’s up to an average Joe to get human evolution back on track.

No Impact Man April 28

Colin Beavan is a liberal schlub who got tired of listening to himself complain about the world without ever actually doing anything about it. Thus, in November 2006, Beavan launched a year-long project in which he, his wife, his 2-year-old daughter and his 4-year-old dog went off the grid and attempted to live in the middle of New York City with as little environmental impact as possible. The No Impact project has been the subject of stories in The New York Times, the Christian Science Monitor, and many other national and international news outlets. Beavan has appeared on The Colbert Report, Good Morning America, Nightline, The Montel Show, and all the major NPR shows. He speaks regularly to a wide variety of audiences and consults with business on the intersection of sustainability and human quality of life.

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Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching and in case you need a few ideas of thing to do or places to eat this weekend in the Lynchburg area, I thought I would share my favorites.

Events

Saturday, the Lynchburg Community Market is host to the 3rd Annual Chocolate Challenge.  I blogged about this earlier in the week, and now have some official news.  Tasting tickets are $5 each and available the day of (ie: Saturday, at the market).  Tasting starts at 10am so get there early and purchase your ticket!  While you’re at the market, check out the local vendors both in the Heritage Crafter’s Gallery and the weekly market vendors with delicious produce and baked goods.  There was talk of a joint chocolate and wine pairing between Chocolates-R-Us and Chateuau Z Winery!

Local Eateries

Main Street Eatery is hosting a special  Valentine’s Day Gala Menu as well as their regular menu AND their special OysterFest menu.  I’ve only eaten at Main Street once, the night of our wedding, and it was delicious.  A little on the pricey side, perhaps, but well worth it.

Other fun places to celebrate a special day around Lynchburg includes Mangia, dish, Bull Branch, Waterstone Pizza (and be sure to get the hot crab dip!), Robin Alexander, Isabella’s, Millstone Tea Room (with a focus on fresh, local, and humane), and Machu Picchu.

And for a special brunch on Valentine’s Day (since it is on a Sunday this year) check out Basic Necessities in Nellysford (reservations necessary for this lovely small restaurant), Neighbor’s Place, and Isabella’s (with a focus on local ingredients).

Great Gifts

The Lynchburg area is home to a wonderful group of artisans each with unique interests.

  • The Community Market is home to the Heritage Crafter’s Gallery, open daily, with a variety of vendors selling everything from goat milk soap (Dixie Soaps) to bird houses to beautiful paintings and greeting cards to doll clothes to hand crafted furniture (Sticks and Stones).
  • Brookneal is home to Night Sky Farm, a local Grade A Goat Dairy producing fresh cheeses, goat milk soap, and even laundry soap!  Jennifer has designed some lovely soaps with Valentine’s Day in mind.  It’s also that time of the year when Jennifer puts out her Chocolate Raspberry chevre! (I tasted it at the last Chocolate Challenge and it’s good!)
  • Local goat milk soap producers include Shantara Acres and Delectable Hills.  You can buy Shantara’s soaps online, but Delectable Hills soaps are only available on-farm at this time of the year.
  • Give the gift of great wine.  The Lynchburg area is home to several great wineries.  Chateau Z, in Amherest sells at the Lynchburg Market.  Also, in Brookneal, there is Sans Soucy Vineyards, available at the winery’s on-site tasting room and at the Lynchburg Market.  Sans Soucy is a member of the SoVA Wine Trail.  Both wineries at the Lynchburg Market offer tastings.  The Lynchburg area is also extremely close to the Bedford Wine Trail, hosting unique wineries such as Peaks of Otter (specializing in fruit wines, not necessarily from grapes).  In nearby Nelson County, you can find a host of fine wineries and breweries with delightful offerings — including some of my favorites, Lovingston Winery (by appointment only) and Devil’s Backbone Brewery.
  • A gift of luxury?  What’s better than a massage or pedicure?  Luckily, Lynchburg is home to some amazing spas and salons.  Acorn Hill Lodge & Spa offers a chocolate truffle body wrap that is divine.  Trust me, I know, HB gave me one for my birthday last year.  And if you’re looking for a manicure or pedicure (or both!) in Lynchburg, look no further than the Parlor Spa downtown.  The Parlor Spa offers their signature mani and pedi which is amazing, complete with a massage.  The Spa is small and inviting, offering you a glass of wine or a bottle of water while you enjoy your pampering.  Their heated massage chairs are the BEST!  While you’re at it, include lunch at the new Market at Main (I’ve heard their sweet potato pancakes are amazing) just around the corner.
  • Need a last minute gift?  Check out these fun local stores!  The Beeswax Candle Company has a beautiful selection of candles crafted from beeswax, some made right here in Lynchburg!  Their store front downtown has more than just candles, featuring local artists’ paintings, jewelry, and housewares.  Looking for a big gift?  Check out Lynchburg’s own Thomas A. Johnson Furniture Co. for a selection of beautifully crafted furniture.

*Vintage Valentine’s cards from Curly Wurly and Vintage Holiday Crafts.

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Have plans for Valentines Day?

Love chocolate?

For the third year, the Lynchburg Market is hosting the Chocolate Challenge on the Saturday closest to Valentines Day.  You have three options: look, taste, bake!

Look:  Head to the market on Feb. 13th and look at all the amazing chocolate concoctions.

Taste:  Go to the Community Market website and you’ll be able to purchase tasting tickets for a nominal fee.  Then, on Saturday, grab your ticket, put your diet aside, slip into your sweet tooth, and don those loose pants.  Head to the market and be prepared to taste dozens of delicious chocolate dishes.

Bake:  Love to cook?  Have an affinity for chocolate?  Then enter your signature chocolate dish in the contest.  Entry options are brownie, cake, candy, pie, other.  My annual favorite is Sweetie’s Chocolate Lava Cake, but there are always amazing dishes.  Entries are judged on presentation, taste, and wow factor.  You can find entry information on the LCM website (listed above).  Be advised – enter early because space is limited!

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Vintage Virginia Apples in North Garden, Virginia, is a family-run orchard founded in 2000 with a focus on preserving heirloom varieties of fruit trees.  What started with a few varieties of apples has grown into over 200 unique varieties of apples, peaches, plums, cherries, nectarines, apricots, and pears.  Many of the varieties grown at VVA are becomingly increasingly rare and hard to find, since many no longer fit the needs of today’s commercial marketing and distribution systems.  In an effort to spread the wealth of heirloom varieties, the nursery at VVA offers hundreds of varieties of heirloom trees for sale, as well as rootstock for use in grafting.

Vintage Virginia Apples is also the home of Ablemarle CiderWorks, a family-run cidery that focuses on making hard cider from locally-produced heirloom apples.  Currently producing three delicious varieties of cider, Albemarle CiderWorks has exceeded expectations in their first year of production.  If you haven’t had the opportunity to visit and taste their cider offerings, I recommend you put it on your calendar.  The tasting room is open Wednesday through Sunday, 11am – 5pm.

Vintage Virginia Apples also offers a smattering of workshops throughout the year, focusing on orchard development, pruning, grafting, and cidermaking.  For HB’s birthday I gave him the option of attending any of the workshops or purchasing trees or rootstock.  I think he plans on attending the February 27th workshops for pruning and grafting.  I might have to tag along!

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Love birds?

Want to learn how to attract them to your yard?

Then on Saturday, February 6th, you need to point your car towards downtown Lynchburg and join the festivities at the Lynchburg Community Market!

*Please note, the date on the flier is for January 30th, but due to snow the event has been postponed until the following weekend.

Vendors  at the market will have an assortment of items for sale — hand mixed bird seed, homemade suet, bird feeders, bird baths, bird houses, dried flowers full of seeds, and much more!

There will also be a book signing by a local author, and lectures by local bird enthusiasts.

Hope to see you there!

(In spirit, since I have to work.  But if you’re at the market around 7am, I’ll see you!)

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Yes, you heard that right.

A Prairie Home Companion is coming to Lynchburg.

Kind-of.

See, on February 4th, a live Cinecast of PHC is being shown nation-wide.  Luckily, the Movies 10 at Candlers Station, has been selected as one of the host theaters.

Here’s your chance to see what the real Guy Noir looks like!  To visualize the news from Lake Woebegone.  To hear some good folk music.

I grew up listening to parts of the Prairie Home Companion and never really cared for it until recently.  Now, I love driving along the road listening to PHC.  It has a lovely quaintness about it that just wraps around me.

Unfamiliar with PHC?  Check out its Wikipedia entry for the most complete information and an introduction to the various segments of the show.

Tickets are $22/each, and I’m hoping HB will agree to go with me!

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A few hours away is a secret of the agriculture revolution.

Polyface Farms, of Swoope, Virginia, has become a legend in the supporting alternative, local agriculture realms.  Joel Salatin and his outgoing, sometimes overbearing personality, are well known.

I’m not even sure how to put into words what Joel and his family do on their farm.  So, I turn to Wikipedia –

Polyface Farm is a farm located in rural, Swoope, Viriginia, run by Joel Salatin and his family. The farm is driven using unconventional methods with the goal of “emotionally, economically and environmentally enhancing agriculture”. This farm is where Salatin developed and put into practice many of his most innovative and significant agricultural methods. These include direct marketing of meats and produce to consumers, pastured-poultry, grass-fed beef and the rotation method which makes his farm more like an ecological system than conventional farming. Polyface Farm operates a place where consumers go to pick up their produce.

Salatin bases his farm’s ecosystem on the principle of watching animals’ activities in nature and emulating those conditions as closely as possible. Salatin grazes his cattle and pigs outdoors within small pastures enclosed by high-tech, electrified fencing. His chickens are housed in portable coops that are easily and daily moved to ensure that the animals always have fresh grass. Animal manure fertilizes the pastures and enables Polyface Farm to graze about four times as many cattle as on a conventional farm, thus also saving feed costs.  Salatin’s pastures, barn, and farmhouse are located on land below a nearby pond that “feeds the farm” by using 15 miles of piping. Salatin also harvests 450 acres of woodlands and uses the lumber to construct farm buildings.  One of Salatin’s principles is that “plants and animals should be provided a habitat that allows them to express their physiological distinctiveness. Respecting and honoring the pigness of the pig is a foundation for societal health.

The farm is open nearly every day and has an “open door” policy regarding tours of the farm.  Anyone and everyone is welcome to visit at anytime and take themselves on a tour around the farm.  Nothing is off limits, and you are free to talk to anyone.  At the same time though, don’t expect a guide to show you around!

Tours are available but are outrageously priced (with good reason), but during the spring and summer months, once a week or so, there are guided tours are available – the only catch is you must register in advance, and they fill up months away from actual tour dates.  The tours are scheduled on weekdays, and I really want to go.

Anyone want to take a day off and tour Polyface with an official tourguide?

“Lunatic Tours” are available for sign-up here. Adults are $10.50/person and children under age 12 are free!

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Last Saturday afternoon we piled into the car and headed to Gretna for a visit to Our Father’s Farm.  The farm, owned by the Fuhrmann family, is an 1800’s tobacco farm-turned family farm that raises cattle and poultry for meat, milk, and eggs.  We met the Fuhrmann’s a few months ago at the community market and after a discussion with the in-laws, decided to purchase two turkeys from the farm to dress our Thanksgiving table.

The farm was beautiful, rolling green fields dotted with grazing cows and chickens.  The beautiful family of 10 (husband, wife, grandmother, and 7 children) were honest and sweet.  We arrived just as a chef from Isabella’s, a restaurant in Lynchburg, was leaving, his Volvo SUV loaded with at least a dozen turkeys.  The Fuhrmanns informed us that Isabella’s buys all of their eggs, ground beef, chickens, and turkeys from the farm.  We were thrilled to hear of a local restaurant supporting local, sustainable family farms in such a manner.  We love Isabella’s, and I think we’ll try to support them a little more frequently when we can!

The children showed us around the farm, introducing us to the farm dog (Shadow, a lean black German Shepherd) and showing us the animals.  We helped ourselves to some cider and talked “shop” with the adults learning about the farm and how they manage it and offer produce.  As a couple of young farmers who would eventually like to do a similar enterpise, we wanted to hear what they had to say!

As we left one of the younger blonde-haired daughters offered us a loaf of whole wheat sourdough bread, fresh baked by a neighbor.  We enjoyed that bread several times with week, soft and delicious.

My favorite part?  A part I didn’t even think to photograph? (But now wish I had?)  Inside their storage room, the room lined with coolers and freezers for storing milk, eggs, and beef products, was an inscription written into the poured concrete floor surrounded by handprints and the names of family members –

“A land of milk and honey”

A fitting quote, I think, for a couple of married missionaries, raising their seven (soon to be eight!) children on a farm in rural Virginia, bringing delicious, healthful, and sustainable food to a willing community.

Good for them.

And so, our turkey, which a week ago roamed green fields and feasted on green grass and bugs, rests quietly in our refrigerator.  This afternoon we’ll place him in a brine solution and roast him slowly tomorrow.  Tomorrow we’ll give thanks to God for our fortunes and sorrows and think happily of the family who cared for our turkey before us.

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