Mary Baldwin to Host Food Day

October 9, 2014

For years, Mary Baldwin University Dining Services has sourced more and more of its ingredients from area farms and producers. So it’s only fitting that the college is the site of this year’s Food Day celebration, which brings together local food, drink, and live music.food day logo

“Students will have the opportunity to engage with local farmers and community members while these neighbors and growers can see first hand that we can and do partner with local farms and vendors with a great deal of success,” said Tracy Hiner, director of dining services.

The celebration kicks off at 4 p.m. October 23 in front of Lyda B. Hunt Dining Hall with a free mini-farmers market and food fair. A cash bar will be set up in the new Cross Talk space inside Hunt Hall (formerly known as the Nuthouse) featuring spirits from Queen City Brewing, Bold Rock Hard Cider, Devils Back Bone, Red Beard Brewing, and Barren Ridge and Ox Eye vineyards.

Vendors at the outdoor market will include Aleta Springs, Cool Breeze Stables and Farm, Dancing Star Farm, Malcom’s Market Garden, Mt. Crawford Creamery, Nu-Beginning Farm, True & Essential Meats, White Barn Company, Sunrise Farm, Buffalo Creek, and Jan’s Jams Inc.

Dinner will be served from 4–7 p.m. inside the dining hall with a menu featuring locally sourced ingredients. Tickets for the meal are $8 and can be purchased at the door or in advance at Bookworks.

After dinner, winners of the Agriculture Cultivates Resilient Economies, or ACRES, grants will be recognized.ACRES is a collaboration between Food Day co-sponsors Valley Conservation Council and the Staunton Creative Community Fund, which provides business training, support, and grant funding to allow conservation-oriented local foods businesses in Augusta and Rockingham counties to expand their capacity.

Staunton Creative Community Fund hosted a similar food day event downtown last year, Hiner said, but because Mary Baldwin is recognized as a community leader in partnering with local farmers and vendors, the college was invited to consider hosting this year’s event on campus.

Ticket stubs from dinner can be brought downtown to participating restaurants on Friday, October 24 for 10 percent off purchases. The event is tied to the nationwide recognition of Food Day, which was created to inspire Americans to change their diets and the nation’s food policies.

On the Menu:

Bar #1

  • Braised local chicken in sauce chasseur
  • Wild rice
  • Fresh roasted brussel sprouts
  • Local artisan breads

Bar #2

  • Roasted pork loin with fall fruit compotedining hall salad
  • Roasted sweet potatoes
  • Sautéed green beans with shallots

Bar #3

  • Gnocchi with butternut squash sauce garnished with sage
  • Asian pear salad with bleu cheese crumbles

Bar #4

  • Braised local beef tagine
  • Ras el Hanout couscous with raisins