Spring into Local Events Celebrating Food and Farms!
Happy April to you all! This month’s abundant events schedule got off to a great start last Friday when we joined some of our local growers and producers in tabling at the UF Campus Earth Day Celebration.
We got to chat with UF community members about the co-op, and we shared the fine company of some of the local producers who supply their goods to the co-op, including Frog Song Organics (vegetables), High Springs Orchard & Bakery (baked goods and fruits), and Cognito Farm (pastured eggs).
Looking ahead, we have some other great events coming up that celebrate our wonderful community of local farms and food producers!
Saturday, April 21st- at Swallowtail Farm in Alachua… 12 noon til midnight, enjoy music by local artists, farm tours, slip-n-slide, local brews, and buy a ticket for the 4 Chefs 4 Courses Farm-to-Table dinner, served from the fields and in the fields! Citizens Co-op will be in attendance, vending cold drinks and spreading the word about our food co-op.
Sunday, April 22nd- at Frog Song Organic Farm in Hawthorne… 2 pm to 8 pm, music, farm tour, great eats locally grown and prepared!
Sunday, April 29th- at Citizens Co-op! We’re hosting this lovely event from 2 to 5 pm in our very own courtyard… come on down for cooking demos, music, and goods and info from local vendors and organizations!
Not just one but TWO Beer + Cheese Tastings this month! , and Friday April 27th for ArtWalk!
Enjoy a selection of locally- and regionally- produced beers and cheeses in our courtyard, $5 donation.
And don’t forget to “like” us on for up-to-the-minute announcements about our events and new products! And share with your friends
Taste Our Local Fare
Spring is officially here! Not only does it bring wildflowers, hot weather, and plenty of sunshine to brighten your weary-eyed days… but an abundance of LOCAL PRODUCE is flooding the shelves at the Co-op. Check out the latest Fresh & Local Produce Report , emailed to all newsletter subscribers, to find out what’s in stock these days.
Oh the joyful tastes of Spring Onion, Green Garlic, Crisp Carrots, & Golden Beets! Butterhead Lettuce, Bright Rainbow Chard, & Other Fresh Greens… Oh My! The promise of summer squash, tomatoes, blueberries, and cucumbers just weeks away.
It’s an exciting time to shop at your local Co-op. Not only will you find the freshest foods available in the local and regional areas, but we’ve got some wonderful new specials this month. Fresh Local Eggs from Cognito Farm for $5.69/dozen and Organic Apple Juice at just $7.99/gallon! Stop in to try one of Armadillo Chocolate‘s latest creations, snack on High Springs Orchard & Bakery’s famous cookies, or pick up some local grass fed beef or chicken from Tracy Lee Farms if you are so inclined.
Using some of the great tastes of the season, here is a recipe that’s sure to be a crowd pleaser for any taste bud in town:
Tempeh Beet Lettuce Wraps with Mango Ginger Sauce
1/2 lb of Jose’s Tempeh Thins
2 tbs soy sauce
1 tbs sesame oil
2 tsp local honey
2 tbs water
1/2 cup chopped florida mango
1 tbs peeled, minced ginger
1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes
1 1/2 tsp lime juice
soy sauce or local honey to taste
1 large local golden beet
1-2 local spring carrots
1 tbs apple cider vinegar
salt & pepper to taste
6-8 large buttercrunch lettuce leaves
1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Mix together the soy sauce, oil, honey, & water in a small casserole dish. Add the tempeh and coat well. Bake for 15 minutes.
2. Blend together mango, ginger, red pepper, and lime juice with about 1 tablespoon water until smooth. Season to taste with honey or soy sauce. Set aside.
3. Shred the Beet and Carrots into a bowl. Sprinkle vinegar, salt, & pepper over them and mix well.
4. Arrange the tempeh, beets, carrots, and mango sauce on top of a lettuce leaf. Roll it up and Enjoy!
makes 6-8 wraps
Earth Day Celebration at UF, this Friday April 6th!
Citizens Co-op will be among the many community organizations participating in this year’s Campus Earth Day Celebration, Farmers Market and Food Fair, hosted by the UF Office of Sustainability.
This event will take place from 11 am to 3 pm on the Reitz Union North Lawn. Stop by our table and say hello! And tell us what you love about the co-op!
In other events news, this past Friday we hosted another stellar Beer & Cheese tasting in honor of the monthly . We were in good company with a book-signing at the Sequential Artists Workshop (SAW) and an art show at Display gallery. A good time was had by all in our neighborly little courtyard!
A very special treat at this event (in addition to the fantastic brews from Swamphead and Cigar City paired with some of our favorite local & regional cheeses) was the traveling poster exhibit that we hosted, entitled “The Lexicon of Sustainability.”
This wonderful poster series was created by a couple of film and photography artists in California– they developed the posters in order to explicate some often-heard concepts within the sustainable food movement, as well as tell the stories of folks around the country engaging in this work. With themes ranging from “Biodiversity” and “The Edible Schoolyard” to “Food Security” and “Urban Farmer,” the images are beautiful and deeply informative– we encourage you to check out the images and stories on .
Thanks as always for supporting your local food cooperative, and stay tuned here for news & events updates, producer profiles, seasonal recipes, and more!
I AM REMINDED EVERY DAY why we are coming together to shape a new kind of food store – One that meets our needs without treading so heavily on the earth beneath us. I was fortunate to be in the Co-op when a pair of wonderful citizens came through on their cross-country to gather knowledge, learn, document, and share about sustainable communities along the way. Wes and I were so inspired by their journey, we invited them to dinner, played music together, and connected face to face with fellow human beings for a few precious hours.
I realize that the pressures of our current society do not necessarily promote this type of interaction. Inviting strangers into the home, speaking to the person next to you at the grocery store, or taking time out of a busy schedule to slow down and get to know someone new.
I have come to appreciate that these things are more possible for me now thanks to the Co-op becoming an actual physical place in our community. The store serves as a connecting hub for people of all walks of life and zip codes to meet one another, to share together, to inspire one another, to support those in need, and to feel more whole and complete by being a part of this. For this singular effect of the Co-op, I am grateful.
But our work is not over. In fact, the Co-op continues to need your support with every shopping trip you make. The Co-op Staff, Managers, and Board are doing everything they can to improve the store every day.
ALL THE CO-OP NEEDS FROM YOU ARE THREE SIMPLE STEPS:
1) SHOP HERE. Spend at least $100/month. That’s $25/week. We’re not asking for charity – You will receive some amazing food items in exchange for your dollars.
2) PURCHASE A $10 GIFT CARD for a friend, fireman, postman, or co-worker this holiday season. Give the gift of supporting local independent merchants and send new people to the Co-op while you’re at it.
3) HELP OUT IN THE STORE. This one is easy, fun, and doesn’t cost a dime! In fact, you’ll earn store coupons for hours worked. Simply fill out this to Volunteer and schedule even just 30 minutes to help rotate produce in the evening. Or, organize a dinner party with fellow members to discuss what else you can create with the Co-op.
It is in all of our hands, as the co-owners of this business, to turn this place into the store that we want to shop at. HELP US. PARTICIPATE. For it is only together that we can create the reality, the future, that we’d all like to be a part of.
With blessings and gratitude,
And the Citizens Co-op Board of Directors
Fill out your ORDER FORM in the Co-op. Limited quantities on some items, so order fast!
From High Springs Orchard and Bakery:
FRESH BAKED PIES: 4″ / 9″
- apple $5.50 / $11.45
- blueberry-pear $5.50 / $11.45
- peach $5.50 / $11.45
- pecan $5.50 / $12.85
- pumpkin $5.50 / $11.45
- sweet potato $5.50 / $11.45
CHESTNUT STUFFING $7.25
FRESH BAKED BREAD
- Sourdough Rolls, 8 PCS $8.59
- Rosemary Corn Muffins, 8 PCS $10.00
LOCAL FREE RANGE CHICKENS $5.50/lb.
Update #3: The Gifts of Being Here
Dear FANTASTIC supporters of Citizens Co-op :
We thank you so much for your incredible generosity in aiding the Co-op with its Summer launch of Citizens Co-op, A community owned and operated marketplace here in Gainesville, Fl – offering an abundant array of local, organic, and natural foods at affordable and fair prices.
The store held its GRAND OPENING on July 15th, 2011 to a huge party and welcome response from our local residents.
Our sales and membership levels have continued to grow steadily since July, by about 15% each month now. And the amount of local vendors that we are able to support with steady purchases at fair prices continues to grow as well – over 25 area businesses are supported by this market. We have employed 12 enthusiastic team members who love coming to work at a business they co-own and can help to co-create.
Of course, we have met our fair share of challenges. Let’s call them “learning opportunities” along the way. It’s been a roller coaster these past few months. But we’re still here. We’re breathing. And we are just pickled to have our very own local Co-op in this little corner of the world.
So our HATS OFF! to you, for believing in this vision, for voting with your dollars, and for being a part of this groundbreaking new business model with us.
Your gifts have all arrived safely and in beautiful and tasty condition to the Co-op now. We truly apologize for not facilitating these to you sooner ~ as you may gather from our message above ~ we’ve had our hands very full indeed! Alas, we have made it in time to ship you these gifts before the Holidays, in the hopes that you can enjoy, relish, delight in, and share the treats we have to offer as a humble THANK YOU to you.
In Cooperation, and with the utmost gratitude,
Gretchen McIntyre, Co-Founder, and the ENTIRE Co-op Team
Read the October Newsletter Online.
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The results are in. Approximately 30% of our membership voted in the recent elections. Your newly elected Board of Director seats are:
Member Representative: Joni Ellis
At-Large Seat #1: Lucian Kragiel
At-Large Seat #2: Doug Nesbit
The remaining seats are being elected by each respective membership group:
Founder Seat: Wesley Hogan
Worker Representative: TBA
Producer Representative: TBA
Thanks for voting & participating in your Co-op!
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Read a recent Interview with Co-founder Gretchen McIntyre here.
Read our August Newsletter Online.
Look for the new orange stickers next to other price tags. These are member-only prices. We’ll run specials all the time on different items, so always check in with us!
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