Farm-fresh food, fun on tap at Locavore Dinner

What is a locavore?

“The definition of a locavore is someone who eats only locally-grown food and uses only local products, made within a 100-mile radius of where they live,” said J.B. Cook, president of the Alpena Farmers’ Market and chairman of the 4th Annual Locavore Dinner.

The event is from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday at the APlex.

For $40 per ticket, or two for $75, local food enthusiasts can gather, enjoy a fresh meal and locally-brewed drinks, all while supporting the Alpena Farmers’ Market.

Tickets can be purchased at The Fresh Palate, the Alpena Farmers’ Market, and Alpena Alcona Area Credit Union branches in Alpena and Ossineke.

“It’s going to be very fresh,” Cook said.

Chefs Eric Peterson of the Fresh Palate and his brother Kevin Peterson of Red Brick Tap & Barrel will prepare a homegrown menu.

Much of the meat and produce has been donated or provided at a huge discount for this event, Cook said.

Here’s what local foodies can look forward to at this farm-to-fork meal:

¯ Beef enchiladas with pico de gallo (grass-fed beef from B&B Farms)

¯ Loaded potato pulled pork casserole (pork by Bixel Family Farm)

¯ Corn-on-the-cob with compound butter

¯ Cabbage, pepper, onion and potato hash

¯ Herb pesto roasted vegetables

¯ Kale and roasted beet salad with maple balsamic dressing (veggies from Presque Isle Farms)

¯ Fresh in-season fruit

¯ Fresh vegetables with roasted baba ganoush

¯ Homemade bread and rolls (by Jean Kortman)

¯ Desserts include: Fresh fruit cobblers (D&E Orchards) with ice cream (Downtown Scoops) and specialty cakes and pies (from Sandy Santamour) with fresh whipped cream.

Local wine and beer will be on tap from Thunder Bay Winery and Austin Brothers Beer Company.

Fresh flowers will be provided by Falls Creek Produce & Flowers. Centerpieces will be by the FFA, and place settings an linens will be by Glitz and Glamour and J&M Catering.

MLM Trio will perform live music, and a live auction and raffles will be held at this entertaining event.

Eating and buying local has many benefits, Cook said.

“The dollars spent at the farmers’ market stay in the community,” Cook noted. “And it’s supporting and creating jobs in Alpena.”

Cook said the Locavore Dinner has been a success over the years in fundraising for the Alpena Farmers’ Market.

“We’ve raised about $26,000 already over the past three years,” Cook said.

Most of that money has been banked to go toward a future farmers market expansion, and a portion is used each year for scholarships for students going into farming-related fields.

“We gave out $500 this year, and we add $500 each year for that fund,” Cook said of the scholarship money.

Cook said the farmers’ market expansion is tied to the city’s future plans for Mich-e-kewis Park, where the Alpena Farmers’ Market would like to utilize a new multi-purpose facility.

“We’re still in the developmental process with the city,” Cook said.

For more information, contact Cook at 989-255-9372 or jbandteri@yahoo.com, or LeAnn Schultz at 989-354-1538.

The Alpena Farmers Market is open on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Mich-e-ke-wis Park now through mid-October. It moves to Saturdays only inside the Alpena Mall for the winter.