Last weekend I headed out to The New Farm, an organic farm in Creemore, Ontario. I’m editing a book about the farm called, appropriately enough, The New Farm. It’s a memoir by Brent Preston, about how he and his wife quit the rat race in Toronto to become farmers—despite knowing next to nothing about farming. It takes the pulse of the good food movement ten years on, and shows how organic farming can offer a sustainable livelihood for families.
Each year, The New Farm partners with The Stop Community Food Centre and holds a fundraiser dinner and concert. (I also worked on a book about The Stop.) Top chefs from Toronto, Collingwood, Cambridge, and more come to the farm and serve up their finest food from kiosks. Beer, wine, and speciality drinks flow freely. Then the diners gather in the drafty barn for a concert.
I was especially excited about this year’s event, as Sloan was playing. I caught the bus to Barrie on Saturday morning, then biked from Barrie to our accommodation for the night, The Sequel Inn (about 50 km). I then rode (in a car) with my publisher and her husband to the farm. The farm is on top of the escarpment—”windy country”—but the sun was shining and the day was warm. The food was exquisite, particularly The Stop salad made with greens grown just feet away on the farm.
And Sloan…I mean, come on! I love Sloan.
On Sunday morning Brent gave us a tour of the hoop houses, fields, and prep areas. It was great to have the visuals to go with the rich text we’ve been reading. Then it was back to the inn, and I rode to the Barrie GO station to catch the bus to Toronto. On the ride back we had steady 30 km winds with gusts of 54 km–not my ideal riding conditions, but at least the rain held off.
Then wouldn’t ya know it, today at lunchtime I was wandering around looking for my colleague Deirdre and I ran into Jay and Chris from Sloan, so I could tell them in person how much I enjoyed their show. Sometimes my life feels rather charmed.