The Local Calendar 6/5/13 Midnight Sun Farm Tour, Morton Grove Market Opens, Bake Sale at Little Goat

June 5, 2013 at 11:00 am

ChiveblossomChives Chicago Lights Hoop Houses             The purple chive blossoms are the latest addition to my salads. Beware, however, they do pack a burst of onion punch! Seeing the chives growing at the Chicago Lights Farm at Chicago and Hudson, they looked like wild flowers, not an edible vegetable. Next to the chives were the hoop houses filled with lettuces. I left the farm with a bagful of lettuce. The hoop houses are a 10 minute bike ride from my home, so my salad represented hoop house to plate.  As the produce from urban farms like Growing Power, Growing Home and the Plant increase, it puts the capital letters in LOCAL!

The Green City Market BBQ is Thursday July 18. It always sells out and never fails to have a bit of weather drama, be it rain or heat. One thing is definitely for sure, you will have a chance to see your favorite chef because there is such incredible support for the event from the Chicago restaurant community and you will not go home hungry. The Chicago Gourmet Festival, the weekend in September (9/27/-9/29) where Chicago is Ground Zero for the culinary world in the US and abroad has already sold out its early bird tickets. You had better buy your tickets now.

Chief Beet Rob Gardner gives you an updated rundown on what is season. Our full list of area markets can be found here (and remember this list will only get bigger) If you are interested in finding out even more about what is in season, or what new product might be for sale at the farmers markets, there really are some well written, highly informative market letters and farmers blogs you can access. A few include Terra Brockman’s commentary every week from Brockman Family Farms, Connie Spreen’s weekly market letter for the 61st Market, Farmer Vicky of Genesis Farms is now blogging and Prairie Fruit Farms has a monthly newsletter filled with all sorts of cheesy tidbits! Food Day Chicago (Oct. 24) has now moved on to asparagus for their Eat Real Chicago vegetable of the month.  Check out their Facebook page and “like” it while you are there!

Now on to the busy week ahead:

June 5

Andersonville- Andersonville Farmers Market opens 3-8pm (6/5-9/4) On Berwyn between Clark and Ashland

Chicago - Wednesdays at Wood Street - Growing Home Wood Street Farm Stand 11am – 4pm 5814 S. Wood St.

Chicago - Green City Market Lincoln Park Location 7am – 1pm Chef demonstration 10:30am – 11:30am Martial Noguier, Bistronomic.

Chicago – Wine Wednesdays at Province – Seasonal farm to table 5 course tasting menu with pairings $49 159 North Jefferson A Gold level LEED certified restaurant with 3 stars from the Green Restaurant Association.

June 6

Chicago - Daley Center Farmers Market - Market will run May 16th through October 31. There are now microgreens and wheat grass sold by Alex Poltorak of The Urban Canopy and Seasons Soda is there as well!

Chicago – Uptown Market Uptown Farmers’ Market is year round. Every Thursday from 7-1 inside Weiss Memorial Hospital or in the parking lot during the warmer months. 4646 N Marine Drive This is an appropriate day to stock up on Spark of the Heart Soups

Geneva - GMO-Free Potluck 6pm Chesapeake Commons 1490 Geneva Drive

Hyde Park - C & D Family Farm delivers 7-11am Harold Washington Park

June 7-8

Makanda, IL - Giant City Urban Wild Mushroom Foray - The 2013 Wild Mushroom Foray will be hosted at Southern Illinois University’s Touch of Nature Environmental Center adjacent to Giant City State Park in Makanda, Illinois.This free event is open to beginners and anyone out there who wants to enjoy a day in the woods exploring for summer mushrooms. Early registration is encouraged.

June 8-9

Chicago – Bellwether at The Hideout – Go to the link to find out about this “happening” music, local food products, libations, it’s at the Hideout which pretty much says it all.

June 8

Chicago - Midnight Sun Farm Tour and Picnic hosted by The Sugar Beet Coop 10am – 2pm Midnight Sun Farm is just an hour away from Oak Park and is excited to host The Sugar Beet Co-op for a farm tour and catered picnic lunch. We will start the day by exploring the 5-acre organic vegetable farm that is also home to chickens, turkeys, pigs and goats. After a guided hayride tour by farmer Nick Choate-Batchelder, we will feast on a delicious farm picnic catered by Crème Crafted Parties & Events.

Chicago/Fairbury - Slagel Family Farm Tour & Dinner Event with The Publican! 2:30pm  The dinner will be prepared and served by Guest Chef Brian Huston of The Publican. Please BYOB, lemonade and water will be provided. Bus transportation from Chicago will be provided, when purchasing your ticket please select if you would like that option. The Bus will pick everyone up at 837 W Fulton Market Chicago, IL 60607 at 12:00 noon on June 8th. Children are welcome as long as they have parent supervision. $125

Chicago 61st Farmers Market -  9am – 2pm During the outdoor season, which lasts through the end of October, the Market is located on 61st Street between Dorchester and Blackstone Avenues. The 61st Street Farmers Market accepts LINK and Senior Farmers Market Coupons. They also match LINK purchases up to $25 per cardholder, per market day, as long as funding lasts.

Chicago Green City Market Lincoln Park 7am – 1pm

Chicago - Iron Street Farm Stand - 9am – 3pm 3333 S. Iron St.

Evanston - Downtown Evanston Farmers Market - This market will be held from 7:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. every Saturday through November 2. Location: Intersection of University Place and Oak Ave. (behind Hilton Garden Inn, east of East Railroad Ave.) In 2013, the market will celebrate its 38th year.

La Fox – Heritage Prairie Saturday Farmer’s Market  9am – 1pm 2N308 Brundige Road

Morton Grove – Morton Grove Farmers Market opens!! (6/8-10/19) 8am – 12pm  - 6210 Dempster St

Oak Park - Oak Park Farmers Market - The market will run every Saturday through 10/26/13 7am – 1pm Pilgrim Church, right next door to where the market is held, offers fresh warm donuts, juice and coffee, with live bluegrass music nearby. The Oak Park Farmers’ Market is located at 460 Lake St., just one block west of Ridgeland Avenue.

Woodstock - Woodstock Farmers Market Outdoors 9am -12pm

June 9

Chicago - No Kid Hungry No Dessert Left Behind - Little Goat 820 West Randolph 2nd floor Come support Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign . There will be patio seating and full bar along with baked goods from Chicago’s finest pastry talent. A portion of all drink sales will go directly to the charity as well.

Chicago - Glenwood Sunday Outdoor Market opens! – It is the 4th anniversary for the Glenwood Sunday Outdoor market and they have a very loyal customer base! June 2, 2013 and run until October 27, 2013.  The Outdoor Market is located Glenwood Avenue on the west side of the CTA Red Line between Morse and Lunt Avenues in Rogers Park. Hours are 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. on Sundays

Chicago - Logan Square Outdoor Market 10am–3pm Logan Blvd between Whipple and Milwaukee Ave; May 19–Oct 27

Chicago - Pilsen Community Market -9am–3pm  1800 S Halsted St Chicago Community Bank parking lot

Chicago  - Portage Park Farmers’ Market 10am – 2pm Portage Park, Berteau and Central Aves; June 2, 16, 30; July 21; Aug 4, 18; Sept 15, 29; Oct 6

Chicago – DOSE Market – River East Arts Center – 10am – 4pm

June 11

Chicago - Food Day Chicago – All hands meeting - Everyone welcome who is interested in learning more about planning an event for day, events to participate in and find out more about the Eat Real Chicago campaign. 10:00-11:30am 233 N. Michigan Ave. 13th Floor Conference Room RSVP Required! Please RSVP to


June 12

Chicago - Meet Wenonah Hauter Executive Director Food And Water Watch -7pm  The Book Cellar 4736-38 N. Lincoln Ave (Near the Western- Brown Line stop) Come to the Book Cellar in Chicago to meet Food & Water Watch Executive Director Wenonah Hauter as she reads from her new book, “Foodopoly” and discusses current campaigns in Illinois!

June 15

Chicago – Sausage Making Class – 10am – 1pm Red Meat Market This will be another class where you will havea hands-on experience learning how to make sausage and take far home than the cost of the class.

Chicago - Mash Tun Festival - The festival is a celebration of the release of Mash Tun: A Craft Beer Journal issue #3. The Mash Tun is a publication put out by your buddies at Maria’s Packaged Goods & Community Bar and The Public Media Institute, a non profit arts and culture organization based in Bridgeport.

Chicago - Les Dames Chicago Culinary Garage Sale and Cake Walk 10am – 2pm Kendall College This event will include live music, food trucks and a cake walk to compliment the treasures from top Chicago chefs! The proceeds benefit the Les Dames d’Escoffier Scholarship Program & Green City Market.

FD!! Champaign, IL -  Prairie Fruit Farms  City Pub in the Country 4pm Bar Pastoral is a new cheese and wine bistro adjacent to the original Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread, and Wine Shop in Chicago. Chef Chrissy will be showcasing her love of cheese, charcuterie, pickles, and other local ingredients. $107

June 20

Chicago – Taste of the Great Lakes – 6-9pm Columbia Yacht Club The annual fundraiser for the Alliance For the Great Lakes Tickets

June 21

Chicago – Growing Power Summer Solstice BBQ – 5-8pm  Growing Power Chicago 3333 S. Iron Street Come celebrate the beginning of Summer! Growing Power Chicago has a lot to celebrate this season — 11 years of growing delicious produce in Chicago, their two year anniversary at Iron Street, and the launch of the City wide Farmers for Chicago Program at their new South Chicago Farm. Join them to eat scrumptious BBQ, drink local brew and lemonade, and come hang out with the GP Chicago Crew. For our vegan and vegetarian friends, don’t fret! We believe in equal opportunity BBQ — they’ve  got you covered. $25 PLEASE RSVP by calling 773.376.8882

Chicago - CigarBQue -  6:30 – 9:30 pm Beyond Design 4515 North Ravenswood Avenue Join chefs, Rick Gresh, Cleetus Friedman and Giuseppe Tentori for an intimate evening of fine cigars, food prepared by some of the country’s best chefs, beer, wine and cocktails by master mixologists. This is an outdoor smoking event; there is no designated non-smoking area. A portion of the proceeds benefits the Cigar Family Charity Foundation$150 per person

June 25

Chicago - The Stew Supper Club presents “A Smoked Supper”  7pm $45

June 26

Chicago - Logan Square Night Market kicks off today – Palmer and Kedzie in Palmer Park 5pm – 9pm weekly through September 4th.

June 27

Chicago – Come Grow With Us At The Plant –  6:00pm-9:00pm The Plant 1400 West 46th Street Proceeds from the event will support its mission to promote closed-loop food production and sustainable economic development through education and research. The event will also include: a casual meal by Pleasant House Bakery, with ingredients grown on-site, guided tours of the facilities, discussions with their fantastic growers, shared remarks from founder and Executive Director John Edel. Advance tickets are available for $75 each or $90 at the door.

Chicago - Argyle Night Market kicks off today – Argyle and Broadway 5pm – 9pm weekly through September 5th

June 29

Champaign, Il – -  Prairie Fruit Farms Summer Vegetarian 4pm Thad Morrow, chef/owner of Bacaro, Champaign is back for another season. He will be making the trek from Bacaro, in downtown Champaign, across town and out into the country! His SUV will be packed with lots of early summer vegetables. $107

Chicago - 2013 Hunger Walk  7am Care for Real at Soldier Field as we fight hunger by participating in the Greater Chicago Food Depository’s (GCFD) 28th Annual Hunger Walk. The walk steps off at 8:30 on the 29th and is a 5K (3.1 Mile) from Soldier Field to 31st street and back. The event is important to Care for Real as the funds are a vital part of our efforts to provide food to the thousands who turn to us in a time of need.

July 13

Champaign -  Prairie Fruit Farms - – Big Grove Tavern “Local Comfort Farm” SOLD OUT

July 18

Chicago – The Locavore’s Real Taste of Chicago - The Green City Market BBQ Tickets on sale now!

Some sites to check out for further detail on sustainable food/urban ag are the Illinois Stewardship Alliance (get their policy updates here) out of Springfield and the Advocates for Urban Agriculture who is having their spring gath  WeFarmAmerica has tons of weekly events and The Peterson Garden Project  has lots of information for the urban gardener.

July 27

Champaign - Prairie Fruit Farms - “Greek Feast” SOLD OUT

August 10

Champaign - Prairie Fruit Farms - Jared Van Camp “Downstate Reunion” SOLD OUT

August 14

Chicago - Taste of the Nation - Returning for the third time to the historic Grand Ballroom and east lakeside plaza on Chicago’s Navy Pier! Join event chair R.J. Melman (Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises) and nearly 100 of Chicago’s most innovative and renowned chefs and mixologists as we gather together to end childhood hunger in Illinois and America.

August 24

Champaign - Prairie Fruit Farms – “Fiesta Mexicana” SOLD OUT

September 27-29

Chicago Gourmet – A celebration of food and wine. Chicago becomes Ground Zero for the culinary world during this weekend. This will sell out.



These stores specialize in local foods:

Artisanal Wilmette – 414 Linden Ave. Wilmette

Butcher and Larder 1026 North Milwaukee in Noble Square, Chicago

Dill Pickle Food Co-op – 3039 West Fullerton, Chicago

Edible Alchemy Foods Co-op - Located in the near-SW Pilsen neighborhood, the co-op has grown to five locations in, including Hyde Park, River North, Lakeview, and Logan Square

Green Grocer 1402 West Grand Ave in West Town Watch this fantastic video about GMOs, sourcing local and see what you are missing if you don’t shop at the GG.

Marion Street Cheese Market 100 South Marion St. Oak Park

Provenance Food & Wine - 2 locations Logan Square 2528 N. California Lincoln Square 2312 W. Leland Ave.

Publican Quality Meats – 835 W. Fulton, Chicago

Sauce and Bread Kitchen - 6338-40 N. Clark, Chicago

Sharpening By Dave  - Green City Market and other locations throughout Chicagoland. If you want to eat local, you need to have sharp knives to prepare the produce!!  Let Dave know that you read about him in the Local Beet and you will get one dollar off each knife sharpened. 


Area resources for local food initiatives, workshop, classes:

Advocates for Urban Agriculture

Edible Evanston

Illinois Stewardship Alliance

The Peterson Garden Project