Farm dinners have become a popular facet of “agritourism,” with farms working with chefs to bring “farm to table” dining back to the source. Dozens are held each year just in the Chicago food region alone. But most of the participating farms are well out in the country, requiring a day trip or an overnight stay. That location is what makes The Talking Farm’s dinner on Sept. 10 distinctive. The farm is just outside Chicago’s city limits and a short Sunday drive for most residents of the metropolitan area.
Jen Rosenthal is one of the most talented urban farmers in Chicago. Now if she could only find a piece of land of her own to continue and expand her Chicago urban farming career.
Chicago is home to some of the most innovative and inspiring urban agriculture projects in the United States. And FamilyFarmed is providing the opportunity to visit three of these sites on a curated Urban Ag Bus Tour — taking place on Saturday, March 18 during our Good Food Festival.
Chicago is a national leader in the urban agriculture movement, and FamilyFarmed recently conducted a bus tour of four of the leading sites that are growing food — and jobs — on the city’s South Side.
Urban agriculture is on the rise. So is the interest of many homeowners in growing their own food. Now Fleet Farming, a startup company with national intentions, wants to accelerate both trends — and it involves bicycles.
Urban agriculture in on the rise, in many cases providing jobs, opportunities and access to Good Food for residents of underserved communities. But the farm Jen Rosenthal manages on Chicago’s South Side has particular social significance: It is on a site once occupied by apartment towers of The Robert Taylor Homes, which had grown so troubled-plagued that its residents were relocated and the buildings torn down.
Farm Aid publishes a series of profiles on its website of “Farmer Heroes.” Their most recent profile is of Darius Jones, a young Chicagoan and friend of FamilyFarmed, for whom the “hero” title is apt. A troubled youth that resulted in him being incarcerated also set him on the path to the cutting edge of urban agriculture in his hometown.
You would be hard-pressed to find a business that is more local, more community-based, and more dedicated to revitalizing economically challenged neighborhoods than Chicago’s Urban Canopy.