Thursday, July 19, 2012

Vermont 2012 - Burger Night

Dinner my second night in Vermont was very special.  We went to Bread & Butter Farm for their Burger Night.  The line was huge!  Burger Night is incredibly popular even when the weather was rainy, cold, and grey.

I don't have words for this experience.  It is extremely difficult for me to articulate how important it was for me to be at this farm at this point in my life.  Even thinking about it is making me cry on my keyboard.  I cried on the farm, too.  At the end of our night I spent some time alone in Corie's hoop-house and the beauty of their land, their family, their community just came spilling out of me.
The front half of the line to order

Right: Hoop-house, Left: Pavilion for dining and music

Farmer Corie bringing new lettuce to the burger bar

Their beautiful landscape!

Cucumbers in the hoop-house

The length of the hoop-house

Bread & Butter Farm is located on Cheese Factory Rd.
Corie took a minute out of the chaos of running a farm and pop-up restaurant to talk to us and tell us that the kind of jobs we (those of us in the program) are looking for don't exist.  That we need to create them.  We aren't going to find them in a graduate program or on a job listing site - we need to carve our own paths.

She spoke to us again at the TED-esque conference when she told her story and brought the hundred person audience to tears.  She ended with a slideshow of her family and her farm while her husband performed an acoustic rendition his song "Family Farm" (a 2009 live version below).

Finally, I was lucky enough to speak with Corie one on one later in the week over dinner.  I had been wanting to talk to her personally, many of us did, but I was anxious; she's kind of a rock star.  We talked about farm stuff - Corie studied farming at the Santa Cruz program, then she worked to create the MSU program and once that was up and running she had huge input on the creation of the Vermont Farmer's Training program.  I was able to pick her brain and she gave me a lot of really great advice.  And no kidding about the rock star thing...I was the envy of many other women in the group who wished they'd been able to have her ear that night.

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