Four-Day Camping Experience Will Feature Workshops Designed to Reconnect Participants to the Agrarian Roots of Food Preparation
Mt. Folly Farm, which is owned and operated by Laura Freeman, Founder of Laura’s Lean Beef, will host its first annual Heritage Food Festival, a four-day camping experience which begins on Thursday, October 12th.
Attendees of the Heritage Food Festival will have the opportunity to participate in a wide range of workshops focused on traditional food preparation techniques including humane animal processing and butchering, foraging for wild herbs, making cheese and bread from scratch, and cooking with whole, raw ingredients sourced from local farms. The event will culminate in a community feast on Saturday, which will be prepared by workshop leaders and participants over the course of the Festival.
“The food industry in the United States has moved us too far away from our agrarian roots, in favor of over-processed, chemical-filled food options that are making us sick,” said Alice Melendez, Project Lead for Mt. Folly’s USDA Climate-Smart Commodities Grant. “To take back control of our health, we must take back control of our food and return to our roots. The Heritage Food Festival will equip participants with the knowledge and beginning skills they need to do just this.”
The Festival will be officially opened on Thursday with a sound-play exercise, calling in of spirit, and a meal blessing led by Leila Christina, the co-creator and Creative Director of Play Ashram, a yoga and earth-based spiritual retreat community founded in 2018 in the Red River Gorge. On Friday, there will be live music by Jacob Fultz, beginning at 7pm. Regeneration Distilling Co’s mobile bar, “The Alibi”, will also be on site Friday night, along with light food. On Saturday night attendees will put together a community dinner, using the foods produced during the event’s workshops. Otherwise, attendees are encouraged to bring their own food, snacks, and drinks, or to shop at the local country store. This is a pack it in/pack it out camping event for those staying overnight.
Tickets, which are available for the full festival, the workshops only, or the live music only, can be purchased online here.
The full list of workshops that will be presented during the Heritage Food Festival follows.
Hunter, GathererLearn to read the landscape through the eyes of a hunter. Learn basic animal tracking and stalking skills, along with wild foraging.
Become your own butcher. Learn the basics of processing a goat and chickens from start to finish for consumption.
Effective Outdoor Living
Set up camp like a trailblazer. Learn how to effectively set up a comfortable outdoor living space from kitchen to composting toilet.
Using Herbs in Everyday Life
Become a home herbalist. Learn to create your own healing blends of tea to help with basic alignments.
Break away from fears in the kitchen. Learn basic kitchen skills coupled with creative and alternative cooking techniques.
Traditional Diets for Health
Let your food be your medicine and your medicine be your food. Learn the basics of why traditional diets are more nourishing and make a basic bone broth.
Discover how to use a hand-miller and take your turn at grinding wheat into flour.
Learn to move your body in ways to release tension and improve mood.
Poultry Breakdown & Broth
Learn to break down a whole chicken and how to make a basic bone broth from the discarded parts.
Open Pit Roasting
Learn to pit roast for cooking large game or livestock. You will learn to prep the pit and coals, prep the meat and organs, and how to roast the goat to smolder overnight.
Soil Health 101
Healthy foods start with healthy soil. Learn the basics of this delicate living ecosystem.
Cyclical Living & Eating
Find your balance with nature. Learn to become more in-turned with yourself and the natural cycles of being.
Cook and prepare winter squash to enjoy for the fest! Come play, learn, listen to stories, and cook this delicious vegetable together.
Grandma’s Chicken & Noodles
Learn to make old fashioned egg noodles and a classic French Roux that you can use over and over again to make anything from a cream soup to gravy.
Learn to make a vegetable ferment with wild plans combined with traditional cabbage kraut for broader health benefits.
Tap into your inner Cheese Monger. Learn to make basic cheese from fresh milk.
Children’s Nature Crafts
Learn to create a beautiful craft from nature to decorate our table for our feast.
Tap into distilling. Learn to make basic mash from scratch using fresh local ingredients.
Dutch Oven Cooking
Learn the art of cooking in a Dutch oven, and make a delicious dessert using fresh, local apples and a traditional favorite – cowpeas!
Seeds for the Future
Learn and contribute in a facilitated discussion circle focused on seed saving, genetic diversity, and plant adaptation.
Food Systems for the Future
Learn and contribute in a facilitated discussion circle about the culture and politics of the future’s food systems.
Mt. Folly Farm is a part of Mt. Folly Enterprises, which also includes a hemp company, a beef brand, and a whiskey brand. Earlier this year, Mt. Folly Enterprises was awarded a USDA Climate-Smart Commodities grant, which will enable Mt. Folly Enterprises, with Mt. Folly Farm and other partners including Eastern Kentucky University and the Savory Institute, to implement climate-smart farming practices by building a network of farmers throughout the Ohio River Valley region.
More information about Mt. Folly Farm’s approach to climate-smart farming is available here.
More information about Mt. Folly Farm’s first annual Heritage Food Festival, including background information about all workshop leaders, is available here.