Church Craft Fairs & the 100-Mile Diet in Ashfield

Notes from Nan: Northern Living
BY HF Contributing Writer, Nan Parati

You know what I like about not-Daylight Savings Time in the Great Northeast? The fact that it feels like it’s midnight and yet, it’s only 8:15! For people like me who work best at night, I still have miles to go before I sleep!

Here’s a good word: Crafternoons — that’s what we have at 2pm on Saturday afternoons when everyone brings the crafts they’re working on. I thought of that at 4:00 this morning. . . . . Never mind — I just googled the term and there were 20,800 references to the term. Dang it’s hard to be original!

Excuse me—but I have to, in fact talk to the crafts people in the group here. The rest of you, please talk among yourselves for just a minute:

Remember how two years ago, when I had JUST bought Elmer’s (remember that? It wasn’t even fully painted on the inside yet!) and we had the December Art on the Town Artisan Fair here? And then last year we had kind of a smaller version? Well, we want to go larger again this year and really draw some holiday money Ashfield way for our businesses, restaurants and artisans! We’re coordinating with the Congregational Church’s bazaar and with St. John’s craft fair and we’ve reserved the down stairs at Town Hall for vendors to sell their wares, as well.

I just sent out letters and e-mails to artisans I thought might be interested, but if you, as a crafts person would be interested in a booth (either at Town Hall, or opening your studio and selling from there as a part of this event) please e-mail me back at and let me know. The dates are December 1st and 2nd from 10 am – 5pm. Write me, and I’ll send you all the information.

Okay, now we return to our regularly scheduled e-mail:

The Farm Report

Produce Pointer of the Week-

How far do your fruits and veggies travel from the farm to your table? This week’s produce list is organized by proximity to Elmer’s Store, with the approximate distances listed. As gasoline costs rise along with our consciousness about produce quality, it is worth considering the idea of a 100-mile diet. With all the farming in Ashfield and in the Connecticut River Valley, we will be able to stock a wide variety of local (West County) and CRValley produce from within 50 miles!

  • 1/2 mile from Elmer’s Store:
    PATTY FLAT FARM Joan and Joel Arsenault: (broccoli, red and green cabbage, COLLARD GREENS, kale, LEEKS, red and yellow onions, green and yellow peppers, red kuri and delicata squash.
  • 1 mile from Elmer’s Store:
    SANGHA FARM Maribeth and Derek Richie: beets (Heirloom and Red Ace) herbs (thyme, parsley, savory), lettuce (red leaf and ROMAINE), acorn squash, buttercup squash, delicata squash.
  • 2 miles from Elmer’s Store:
    SIDEHILL FARM Amy Klippenstein and Paul Lacinski: carrots, SALAD GREENS and fresh yogurt in 5 flavors.
  • 4 miles from Elmer’s Store:
    BROOK FARM ORCHARD Alan Surprenant: Liberty, Yellow Delicious apples.
  • 4 miles from Elmer’s Store:
    SPRING WATER GARDENS Will and Donna Elwell: CORDWOOD (split and dried), garlic (for eating or for seed), herbs (curly parsley), long cayenne peppers, WINTERBERRY SPRAYS.
  • 10 miles from Elmer’s Store:
    SCOTT’S ORCHARD Ed, Colin, and Donna Scott: Macoun, Macintosh, and EMPIRE apples.
  • 10 miles from Elmer’s Store:
  • 20 miles from Elmer’s Store:
    DONOVAN FARM Ivan and Cindi Donovan : Red potatoes, Yukon Gold potatoes

Speaking of the Farm Report,

Since we live in New England, at some point the local foods will be covered in snow or dead plants or something and at that point we will be forced to order entirely from farmers who don’t live right here. We are, however going to keep up the good produce at Elmer’s so that you can get good produce here all winter long.

Friday’s Menu (11/09/07):

You know what we have for dinner this week? Good hot comfortable food to keep you warm and healthy:

  • We have White Bean, Kale and Italian Sausage Stew
  • with a Mesclun Green Salad
  • And Bread from El Jardin.

  • Vegetarians will have White Bean and Kale Stew

For dessert Susanne is making:

  • Cheesecake from Scratch with an optional apple topping
  • and her Indian Pudding!

Come on in and join the party!

Big Elmer

One Comment on “Church Craft Fairs & the 100-Mile Diet in Ashfield

  1. How does it work? Can any person sell art? Do we have to pay ?
    Are only December 1st and 2nd ? Please let me know.

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