Vivian ChuiOmineca Express
Nearly three hundred residents and community members gathered for a locally-sourced feast at the Vanderhoof Community Garden last Wednesday.
At its second annual Harvest Celebration, the Nechako Valley Food Network invited the Vanderhoof community to enjoy a free barbecue from local ingredients while meeting the area’s food producers, seeing the community garden’s progress, as well as learning about the benefits of growing one’s own food.
Funded through a grant from the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako, this year’s celebration has undergone much growth, said Maya Sullivan, a volunteer from the food network.
“There are things that can grow well here,” Sullivan said. “People can taste for themselves how well local food can be.”
She added that in additional to the event being better advertised this year, residents are getting to know the community garden as well.
“I think people are seeing more benefits in local food and it benefits the local producers,” Sullivan said.
As people make an effort to seek out local foods, Vanderhoof’s Farmers’ Market has grown, as well as its listing of food producers, she said.
For Vanderhoof resident Alice Roche, it was her first time visiting the community garden, though she has heard of it before.
“It’s beautiful,” Roche said.
A directory of local food producers can be picked up at Vanderhoof’s District Office from Monday to Friday, as well as at the Farmers’ Market in Ferland Park on Thursdays.