Thanksgiving looms on the horizon and I have decided to stay put this year. The holiday falls right before my final review of the term, which means I basically don’t get much of a Thanksgiving for the three years I am in grad school. So instead of traveling four hours round trip in one day to Portland and back, I am celebrating quietly in Eugene.

I still feel new to the area, after living here for a year. The time between school terms was spent in New York or up in Portland. I want to sink some roots in here though, however temporary, so I am trying to connect with the local food system here in town.

Working at the Urban Farm means I get a pretty steady source of local, organic food that I grow myself. The picture above shows part of my area there, which includes lots of kale, chard and cabbage right now. It turns out that Eugene actually has a couple pretty great resources that can allow me to round out our cupboards with local food options. I can’t live on greens alone!

The first is a website call Eugene Local Foods, which was started by the guy who owns a local restaurant. Initially it was intended to be a resource for local chefs wanting to source food close to home. It has turned out to have a larger consumer base though with everyday folks like you and me.

The farmers set the price, so not all prices on the same item are equal. You order online and then they deliver to one of a couple drop locations in town. I have not brought from them yet, but wanted to pass it on because it seems like a pretty cool system. It’s like a CSA, but you get to pick what you get. From the website, it looks like prices range from totally reasonable to pricey.

Another cool option is through the Willamette Farm & Food Coalition. They produce an annual local food guide that lists farms around the area. Their website though allows you to search by specific item: turkey, strawberries, chestnuts, etc. It’s a little hard to find on their site, so go HERE for the search function.

I’m planning to visit Laughing Stock Farm again this year to butcher our turkey for the big meal on Thanksgiving. Between the local farmers’ market and these two resources above, I should have a pretty easy time filling in the other items we need for the meal, It should be a nice, relaxing and very local holiday for us this year.

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