Archive for October, 2009

Goats in the city!

Anna & Sweet Darlin'

Anna and Darlin’, her top milker.

This summer I had a great time volunteering at the Madison High School City Repair project to build an outdoor classroom with a curving cob wall and a green roof. Anna Gordon was in charge of the site, working through the AmeriCorps program to teach kids and the community about organic gardening and sustainability. Behind Madison, there is now a sizeable fenced community garden and right in the middle is the outdoor classroom for people to take shelter, make plans, dream big and enjoy the fruits of their labor. It’s a really great project and it was so fun. If you ever get a chance to cob, do it — it’s amazing what people can accomplish with this material.

Anyway, one of the days we were all working and talking and I discovered that Anna keeps goats! In the city! For milking! We had helped our friends Leah & Greg put up a chicken coop this summer so I knew that you are allowed up to 3 livestock animals inside the city limits. Beyond that, you need a special permit, which Anna’s household has. She is living on a double lot in Northeast Portland as part of a co-op of nearby households. There are 8 people who help oversee the goats and chickens and the garden. They take turns milking and cleaning out the pen and making sure that the goats are healthy and thriving. Darlin’, Cheyenne and baby Mona are very happy goats.

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The 2009 Wedge Cheesefest in Review

Wedge Logo

Despite the grand title, this will be a short post.

I was extremely privileged to wrangle a spot on the organizing committee for the ’09 Wedge Cheese Festival — Nicole and I were co-coordinators of the volunteers and site. We had a good group of over thirty volunteers throughout the day and they were all rockstars. Seriously. Everyone worked so hard and I think it was a lot of fun, too.

We had nearly 30 vendors from all around the Pacific Northwest. There were close to 10,000 visitors to the festival and we took in four barrels of food donations for the Oregon Food Bank. From what I could tell, people were really amazed and blown away by all the wonderful cheese. Our site at the Green Dragon Pub worked out great and the bar did a huge amount of business selling beer and grub. You can see a bunch of photos from the event on the Flickr group site — if you took pictures at the event, become a member of that group and submit your Wedge ’09 photos today!

All in all, a big success and I’m so proud to have been a part of it. Looking forward to the next one!

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