Photos Troy Foster
Coming to the Dallas area for a second year, An Evening with Farm Aid on October 8, 2015, promises good local chef involvement as well as music by Texas band, Jamestown Revival and the Secret Sisters.
Chef’s Robert Lyford of Patina Green Home and Market in McKinney and George Brown of Experimental Table will be preparing the evening’s meal according to Kari Williams, Development Director at Farm Aid, a menu served family style, with multiple courses “and will focus on seasonal and local ingredients. We had lamb raised for the event from Cartermere Farms, grass fed beef from Local Yocal and cheeses from Full Quiver Farms. Organic produce will be purchased from a variety of North Texas farms.”
Dallas actually got involved in the Farm Aid event last year when Kevin & Ashley Steed and Robert & Kaci Lyford expressed their desire to do something locally to raise money for Farm Aid and draw attention to the issues facing family farmers in their area.
“An Evening with Farm Aid' is our small event series with 200 or fewer guests dedicated to an elevated experience of incredible food sourced locally, paired with music from amazing musicians,” Williams said. “The money benefits Farm Aid’s grant program and we also hosted a drought mitigation workshop in early 2014 with funds raised at our first Texas event.”
As for the chefs involved this year, Lyford has been a huge driving force behind the local effort overall and as for the location this year, William’s says it is perfect in Van Alstyne on a historic longhorn ranch, “right in the heart of farm country in North Texas,” she said.
Expecting about 150 people, organizers are hoping to raise between $65,000 and $75,000 at the Rustic Grace Estate location with a cost of $250 per person. Not only with good food, but also good music she adds “We chose bands that wanted to lend their time and talent to bring attention to these issues. These are bands that are not household names, but their passion for family farmers will resonate with guests.”
Last October, the “An Evening with Farm Aid” event raised more than $53,000 at Luscombe Farm in Anna, TX. Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Mellencamp organized the first Farm Aid concert in 1985 to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm families on their land. Dave Matthews joined the Farm Aid Board of Directors in 2001. Farm Aid has raised more than $48 million to promote a strong and resilient family farm system of agriculture. Farm Aid is celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2015.
“Kaci and I are excited that Farm Aid is coming back to North Texas to show support for our local farm community,” said Lyford. “Last year’s event was a huge success and we are thrilled to be part of it again. An Evening with Farm Aid gives us an opportunity to celebrate the farmers and all that they do for us.”
For more information or to purchase tickets visit www.farmaid.org/texas.