SARANAC LAKE - The Adirondack Green Circle announces two end-of-the -summer big events. The first is the Farm 2 Fork Festival from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday in Riverside Park.
The second is the "Chefs & Farmers: Taste of the Adirondacks" from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 8 at the historic Union Depot railroad station in Saranac Lake.
The Farm 2 Fork Festival will feature local "home cooks" creating dishes using ingredients from the local farmers market. The $10 ticket will allow a taste at each of the eight cooks stations, the Pickle Bar, a taste of hand cranked ice cream, a drink at the Artisan Beverage Bar and a sample of fresh pressed cider. A recipe book will be available for purchase and live animals will be on display.
The theme of this year's festival is "Stretching Your Farmer's Market Dollar." Along with produce from the local farmers' market, festival chefs will create dishes adding one of three, protein-dense ingredients from outside the North Country: lentils from Washington state, quinoa from Canada and beans from New York state and Vermont. All recipes used in preparing the dishes will be available for purchase in the "Farm 2 Fork Cookbook."
This year's festival will also include four workshops: "Tools for Homesteading" by Paul Smiths professor Brett McLeod; "Rendering Misunderstood Lard" with Sara Burke from Atlas Hoofed It Farm and Nutritionist Martha Pichard Palmer; "Stocking Your Shelves with Homemade Tea," offered by "wild edible" expert Pat Banker; and "Preserving Your Bounty," with chef Tom Morris of Alegria Restaurant.
The night before the Farm 2 Fork Festival on Friday, Maryland chicken farmer Carole Morison (who was featured in the Oscar nominated documentary film "Food, Inc.") will give a talk entitled "From Industrial Farming to Pasture Raised: Progressing the Local Food Movement" at 7 p.m. in the Harrietstown Town Hall. Carole is working with Animal Welfare Approved to promote humane farming practices. Animal Welfare Approved will have a booth at the Festival and Carole will speak briefly at 10:30 a.m. Entertainment at the Festival will feature Soma Beats and Wuluba Drummers.
A week later, on Sept. 8, "Chefs & Farmers: Taste of the Adirondacks" will feature chefs from area restaurants and catering companies. Each chef will create a dish made with produce from local farms. Attendees will have the opportunity to sample some or all of the featured dishes. Tickets can be purchased for $1 each with tastings $1 or more depending on the dish served. Beer and wine will be available.
"This year's Farm 2 Fork Fest and Chefs & Farmers events will be better than ever," Green Circle founding director Gail Brill said. Brill added that these events not only educate consumers but they enhance community spirit as well as "support hard working local farmers."
According to Brill, summer droughts across the country will significantly raise food prices in the coming months.
"This makes supporting our local farms even more important," Brill said. "One of the missions of the Green Circle is to help our farmers prosper."
This year the Green Circle is partnering with the HoboFest to promote Labor Day weekend in Saranac Lake.