Friday, September 2, 2011

Let Your City Kids Taste Farm Life

We've all heard the sad stories about when an adult asks a city (or suburban, for that matter) kid, "Where does our food come from?", and the child answers, "From the store." What do yours say when you ask them? Mine four year old answered, "I don't know. Here?" (we were at a restaurant when I asked). Well, whether yours are well educated on the subject of farm to fork or don't know the difference between a farm and a food store, chances are they have never had the chance to milk a goat...but now they can!

Angelic Organics is my favorite farm ever because they have been supplying our seasonal vegetables since before my children were ever a thought. They also have a wonderful non-profit on the farm called the Angelic Organics Learning Center (AOLC) who has some really amazing and completely affordable children's programming. Located in Caledonia, IL, AOLC is just under 2 hours away from Chicago. Just close enough for a day trip. Their next event for ages 3-5, Preschoolers! Fresh Food From the Farm is coming up on Sept 9th and includes picking "fresh carrots, gathering eggs from the chickens and trying their hand at milking a goat!" can also try hardboiled eggs from the farm and make a salad snack straight from the field. Now not many preschoolers I know like to eat salad, but most do like to try things that they have a hand in making, and in this case not only will they make it, but they likely get to harvest it and see the ingredients while they are still connected to the soil. How cool is that? I'll bet that increases the chances of their eating salad, right? Your children will learn and expand their palette without even realizing it's happening.

To see a farm in action is an amazingly rich learning experience. For children and people of all ages who have ever wondered how food gets to their plates, nothing is as awe-inspiring as seeing rows upon rows of carrots, lettuces, kale, radishes, etc. This is the food that should be feeding America. It makes me so proud to eat the produce that comes straight from a farm here in IL. It tastes so fresh, flavorful and delicious! So register to take your kids up to Caledonia and visit AOLC this weekend (space is limited), or click here to see if there's another event that better fits your calendar.
(This photo to the right is of hundreds of onion seedlings on a flatbed trailer at AO. The farm now offers extra seedlings free to shareholders on a first-come, first- served basis.)