Squash Delivery #1 – A Big Surprise

By Bob | October 4, 2021 |

This morning I took the first six pallets from Saturday’s harvest up the The Food Group who will distribute the squash to Food Banks around the metro area. They weighed each pallet. Based on last year’s harvest I was guessing about 500 pounds a pallet or about 3,00o pounds total. The total: 3,979 – almost half a ton more than I expected! Thanks again to all who helped. You did more than you knew!

Offloading Squash Delivery #1

First 2021 Squash Delivery to The Food Group

2021 Squash Delivery Receipt from The Food Group

2021 Squash Delivery Receipt from The Food Group

Squash 2021 – Great Crew and a Huge Harvest

By Bob | October 3, 2021 |

Squash harvest volunteers group photo

Squash Harvest Volunteers, 2021

This was one amazing year for squash. With the help of a huge volunteer crew we gathered north of 9,000 pounds of delicata, butternut and acorn squash. Over the next few days I’ll be bringing these to The Food Group (in New Hope) and Channel One (in Rochester) for distribution to food banks across the Twin Cities metro and Southern Minnesota. In addition to the work we also had a great potluck and music – it was a glorious day! Thank you to: Amy Shaw, Ann Farrell, Ari, Barb Pratt, Barb Rose, Benjamin Domask, Chris Bashor, Chuck Lentz, Dave Underhill, Deb Liang, Dug Nichols, Isaac, Joan Weber, Jon Freise, Kim Muehlbach, Matt Tillotson, Mike Muehlbach, Miriam Kowarski, Oswaldo, Pat O’Loughlin, Patti Nichols, Rachel FK, Sarah McCarthy,  and Sarah Purdy. This harvest was much, much bigger than last year’s so it was a lot more work. Thank you, one and all! (Sorry not everyone is included in the group photo, people came and went during the day.)

Unloading winter squash with a tractor

Dana Jokela offloads the first pallet of winter squash

We couldn’t do all this without help from Dana Jokela at Sogn Valley Farm. Dana’s expertise, help and equipment have been essential to this project. As you anc imagine, tractors, planters, cultivators and fuel are expensive. Please help me raise funds to pay Dana for all of his contributions. You can make a tax-deductible donation on this GiveMN page.

Loading squash in the field

Volunteers loading winter squash for food shelves.

Musicians playing at the squash harvest

Pat, Bob, Chris and Amy playing some tunes at the 2021 squash harvest

Musicians at the squash harvest

Chris, Bob, Amy and Pat play tunes during the 2021 squash harvest potluck

Half a Ton of Beets!

By Bob | September 14, 2021 |

Last Friday Dana Jokela of Sogn Valley Farm texted that he had about 1000 extra pounds of beets in his cooler and needed to move them to make space for coming

L-R Hans, Bob, David (standing), Adam

harvests. If I could get a crew to wash and pack them we could get them to The Food Group for distribution to Food Banks. On short notice David Robinson, Adam Brainerd and Hans Barkai responded to the call and got wet and muddy washing, packing and then delivering beets. Thanks guys!

You, gentle reader, can help with this project. Raising organic produce requires seed, machine work, fuel and more all of which cost money. Please help fund this project with a contribution on this GiveMN webpage. Funds will be used to reimburse Dana for the direct costs of this project. Thanks!

Showing beets being delivered to The Food Group

20 Totes full of beets delivered to The Food Group

Big Crew, Big Harvest

By Bob | August 31, 2021 |

A perfect morning for harvesting and what a group of friends! Thanks to (L-R) Cara, Barb, Vi, Miles, Samson, Roger, Chuck, Barb, Eric, Robin, Dug and Daisy plus (not pictured) Jo, Julie and Jenny. Today’s harvest supplied three food banks: Sabathani, Joyce Uptown and Pillsbury United Communities.

Eric, Dug, Daisy, Julie and Barb (and Samson in Barb’s shadow!) picking corn for food banks

Delivering corn to Pillsbury United Communities

For perspective, Matthew Ayres, director of the Joyce Uptown Foodshelf, told me they serve about 450 families per month a total of around 36,000 pounds of food. Joyce is the smallest of the three food banks who took corn today. According to the StarTribune  there are about 350 food banks in Minnesota that collectively served 3.8 million people in 2020 (a 7% increase over 2019). Hard to imagine that a state with so much farmland has so much hunger.