Eat, Drink and Be Local at RIPE! Fest
Cleveland’s “RIPE! Fest No. 03” brings you a bounty of flavorful fare from local farms and restaurants, as well as homegrown bands, a marketplace of merchandise by Northeast Ohio artisans and lots of children’s activites. RIPE! Fest runs 11 a.m. to sundown on Saturday, Sept. 22 and Sunday, Sept. 23 at Cleveland Botanical Garden at 11030 East Blvd., Cleveland, Ohio 44106.
This third annual celebration of all things local promises to delight your senses with a weekend full of live music, local cuisine, food trucks, freshly picked produce, gardening workshops, beer and wine tastings and creative culinary demonstrations by top Cleveland chefs.
Interactive children’s activities at RIPE! Fest No. 03 include veggie-carving demonstrations, puppet shows, healthy snacks, harvest crafts, pedal-tractor rides and cider pressing.
An expansive marketplace featuring local and sustainability-minded merchants will offer everything from jewelry and candles to soap and artwork. Workshop topics include Front Yard Fruits, Eat Your Yard, Chickens and Eggs and Edible Gardening for Fall.
RIPE! Fest No. 3 offers something for people of all ages and promises to attract an eclectic mix of Northeast Ohioans, including farmers, families, musicians, chefs, gardeners and more.
Other activities surrounding this year’s RIPE! Fest include:
• Autumn’s Eve Dinner: A fabulous four-course meal featuring locally grown ingredients prepared by Cleveland-area chefs—all to benefit the local teens who take part in the Garden’s Green Corps urban-farming program. 6 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 20. Dine at community tables under the stars on Wade Oval. Chefs Tony Smoody of Bon Appétit, Douglas Katz of fire food & drink and Ben Bebenroth of Spice of Life Catering Co. are the culinary masters behind the Autumn’s Eve Dinner. Live bluegrass and Americana by Ferguson 35. Individual tickets start at $150, and reservations are requested by calling 216.721.1600 ext. 100.
• Not Quite RIPE! Sound Check Party: An early taste of RIPE! Fest full of live music, great food and premium brews. 5 to 10 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 21. Featuring Cleveland’s favorite polka player, DJ Kishka, and live bands pOUT and Chasing Kelly. Complimentary eats are provided by Chipotle Mexican Grill. Tickets are $6 for Garden members and $11 for non-members.
• RIPE! Fest Pancake Flip-Off: A friendly competition to see whose pancakes stack up best when some of Cleveland’s top chefs put their batter to the test. 10 a.m. to Noon on Sunday, Sept. 23 on the Garden’s Geis Terrace. Chefs include Karen Small of Flying Fig, Eric Williams of Momocho, Scott Kim of SASA, Douglas Katz of fire food & drink, Paul Minnillo of Flour and Ricardo Sandoval of Fat Cats, Felice and The Lava Lounge. Proceeds benefit Green Corps, the Garden’s urban-farming program for teens. Admission is $10 per Garden member and $15 per non-member. Child admission is $6 per member and $8 per non-member. Tickets include admission to the Sunday portion of RIPE! Fest No. 03.
Tickets for RIPE! Fest are $8 per adult Garden member adult, $5 per member child, $13 per non-member adult and $7 per non-member child. Tickets purchased in advance are discounted to $6 per member adult, $4 per member child, $11 per non-member adult and $6 per non-member child. To get your tickets for RIPE! Fest, the Autumn’s Eve Dinner, the Not Quite RIPE! Sound Check Party and the RIPE! Fest Pancake Flip-Off, visit cbgarden.org or call 216.721.1600 ext. 100.
Visit EcoWatch’s SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE page for more related news on this topic.
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By Gwen Ranniger
In the midst of a pandemic, sales of cleaning products have skyrocketed, and many feel a need to clean more often. Knowing what to look for when purchasing cleaning supplies can help prevent unwanted and dangerous toxics from entering your home.
1. Fragrance – Avoid It<p>One of the fastest ways to narrow down your product options is immediately eliminating any product that promotes a fragrance, or parfum. That scent of "fresh breeze" or lemon might initially smell good, but the fragrance does not last. What does last? The concoction of various undisclosed and unregulated chemicals that created that fragrance.</p><p>Many fragrances contain phthalates, which are linked to many health risks including reproductive problems and cancer.</p>
2. With Bleach? Do Without<p>Going scent-free should have narrowed down your options substantially – now, check the front of the remaining packaging. Any that include ammonia or chlorine bleach ought to go, as these substances are irritating and corrosive to your body. While bleach is commonly known as a powerful disinfectant, there are safer alternatives that you can use in your home, such as sodium borate or hydrogen peroxide.</p><p>While you're at it, check if there are any warnings on the label – "flammable," "use in ventilated area," etc. – if the product is hazardous, that's a red flag and should be avoided.</p>
3. Check the Back Label<p>Flip to the back of the remaining contenders and check out that ingredient list. Less is more, here. Opt for a shorter ingredient list with words you recognize and/or can pronounce.</p><p>You may notice many products do not have ingredient lists – while this doesn't necessarily mean they contain toxic ingredients, transparency is key. Feel free to look up a list online, or stick to products that are open about their ingredients.</p>
4. Ingredients to Avoid<p>We already mentioned that cleaners containing fragrance or parfum, and bleach or ammonia should be avoided, but there are other ingredients to look out for as well.</p><ul><li>Quaternary ammonium "quats" – lung irritants that contribute to asthma and other breathing problems. Also linger on surfaces long after they've been cleaned.</li><li>Parabens – Known hormone disruptor; can contribute to ailments such as cancer</li><li>Triclosan – triclosan and other antibacterial chemicals are registered with the EPA as pesticides. Triclosan is a known hormone disruptor and can also impact your immune system.</li><li>Formaldehyde – Causes irritation of eyes, nose, and throat; studies suggest formaldehyde exposure is linked with certain varieties of cancer. Can be found in products or become a byproduct of chemical reactions in the air.</li></ul>
Cleaning Products and Toxics: The Bottom Line<p>Do your research. There are many cleaning products available, but taking these steps will drastically reduce your options and help keep your home toxic-free. Protecting your home from bacteria and viruses is important, but make sure you do so in a way that doesn't introduce other health risks into the home.</p><p><em>Reposted with permission from </em><em><a href="https://www.ehn.org/how-to-shop-for-cleaning-products-while-avoiding-toxics-2648130273.html" target="_blank">Environmental Health News</a>. </em><a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/r/entryeditor/2649054624#/" target="_self"></a></p>
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Twenty-five years ago, a food called Tofurky made its debut on grocery store shelves. Since then, the tofu-based roast has become a beloved part of many vegetarians' holiday feasts.
By Jessica Corbett
A leading environmental advocacy group marked Native American Heritage Month on Wednesday by urging President-elect Joe Biden, Vice President-elect Kamala Kamala Harris, and the entire incoming administration "to honor Indigenous sovereignty and immediately halt the Keystone XL, Dakota Access, and Line 3 pipelines."
- Climate Crisis: What We Can Learn From Indigenous Traditions ... ›
- 10 Organizations Honoring Native People on Thanksgiving ... ›
- Biden Vows to Ax Keystone XL if Elected - EcoWatch ›
Returning the ‘Three Sisters’ – Corn, Beans and Squash – to Native American Farms Nourishes People, Land and Cultures
By Christina Gish Hill
Historians know that turkey and corn were part of the first Thanksgiving, when Wampanoag peoples shared a harvest meal with the pilgrims of Plymouth plantation in Massachusetts. And traditional Native American farming practices tell us that squash and beans likely were part of that 1621 dinner too.
Abundant Harvests<p>Historically, Native people throughout the Americas bred indigenous plant varieties specific to the growing conditions of their homelands. They selected seeds for many different traits, such as <a href="https://emergencemagazine.org/story/corn-tastes-better/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">flavor, texture and color</a>.</p><p>Native growers knew that planting corn, beans, squash and sunflowers together produced mutual benefits. Corn stalks created a trellis for beans to climb, and beans' twining vines secured the corn in high winds. They also certainly observed that corn and bean plants growing together tended to be healthier than when raised separately. Today we know the reason: Bacteria living on bean plant roots pull nitrogen – an essential plant nutrient – from the air and <a href="http://www.tilthalliance.org/learn/resources-1/almanac/october/octobermngg" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">convert it to a form that both beans and corn can use</a>.</p><p>Squash plants contributed by shading the ground with their broad leaves, preventing weeds from growing and retaining water in the soil. Heritage squash varieties also had spines that discouraged deer and raccoons from visiting the garden for a snack. And sunflowers planted around the edges of the garden created a natural fence, protecting other plants from wind and animals and attracting pollinators.</p><p>Interplanting these agricultural sisters produced bountiful harvests that sustained large Native communities and <a href="http://dx.doi.org/10.1353/eam.2015.0016" target="_blank">spurred fruitful trade economies</a>. The first Europeans who reached the Americas were shocked at the abundant food crops they found. My research is exploring how, 200 years ago, Native American agriculturalists around the Great Lakes and along the Missouri and Red rivers fed fur traders with their diverse vegetable products.</p>
Displaced From the Land<p>As Euro-Americans settled permanently on the most fertile North American lands and acquired seeds that Native growers had carefully bred, they imposed policies that <a href="https://doi.org/10.1086/ahr/87.2.550" target="_blank">made Native farming practices impossible</a>. In 1830 President Andrew Jackson signed the <a href="https://guides.loc.gov/indian-removal-act" target="_blank">Indian Removal Act</a>, which made it official U.S. policy to force Native peoples from their home locations, pushing them onto subpar lands.</p><p>On reservations, U.S. government officials discouraged Native women from cultivating anything larger than small garden plots and pressured Native men to practice Euro-American style monoculture. Allotment policies assigned small plots to nuclear families, further limiting Native Americans' access to land and preventing them from using communal farming practices.</p><p>Native children were forced to attend boarding schools, where they had no opportunity to <a href="https://doi.org/10.5749/jamerindieduc.57.1.0145" target="_blank">learn Native agriculture techniques or preservation and preparation of Indigenous foods</a>. Instead they were forced to eat Western foods, turning their palates away from their traditional preferences. Taken together, these policies <a href="https://kansaspress.ku.edu/978-0-7006-0802-7.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">almost entirely eradicated three sisters agriculture</a> from Native communities in the Midwest by the 1930s.</p>
Reviving Native Agriculture<p>Today Native people all over the U.S. are working diligently to <a href="https://www.oupress.com/books/15107980/indigenous-food-sovereignty-in-the-united-sta" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">reclaim Indigenous varieties of corn, beans, squash, sunflowers and other crops</a>. This effort is important for many reasons.</p><p>Improving Native people's access to healthy, culturally appropriate foods will help lower rates of <a href="https://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/aian-diabetes/index.html" target="_blank">diabetes</a> and <a href="https://www.apa.org/pi/oema/resources/ethnicity-health/native-american/obesity" target="_blank">obesity</a>, which affect Native Americans at disproportionately high rates. Sharing traditional knowledge about agriculture is a way for elders to pass cultural information along to younger generations. Indigenous growing techniques also protect the lands that Native nations now inhabit, and can potentially benefit the wider ecosystems around them.</p>
By Jake Johnson
Amid reports that oil industry-friendly former Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz remains under consideration to return to his old post in the incoming Biden administration, a diverse coalition of environmental groups is mobilizing for an "all-out push" to keep Moniz away from the White House and demand a cabinet willing to boldly confront the corporations responsible for the climate emergency.