Release from the West Virginia Farmers Market Association:
CHARLESTON, W.Va. – This summer eight West Virginia State Parks will host “Farm-to-Table” dinners to promote the use of locally grown food in state park restaurants.
The dinners will take place between June 14 and Sept. 27. The events will be hosted by the West Virginia Farmers Market Association (WVFMA), West Virginia Department of Agriculture (WVDA), West Virginia Department of Natural Resources (WVDNR), and the West Virginia state parks system.
“We are extremely grateful to the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Natural Resources for this incredible opportunity to partner with our state parks to show off what West Virginia farmers markets have to offer,” said Parween Mascari, executive director of the WVFMA. “We hope that the public is as excited about this as we are and that this farm-to-table dinner series is just the beginning of a beautiful relationship between our state park system and our local farmers and value-added producers. Sourcing from West Virginians for West Virginia state park restaurants and gift shops just makes good sense.”
The purpose of these events is to grow partnerships with local farmers markets and state park restaurants to develop lasting connections. The WVFMA, WVDA, and WVDNR aim to provide local producers with economic opportunity and our communities with fresh, local food through these dinners, as well as strengthening our local economies here in the state.
“Producers and food providers need to understand they are partners in growing our local food systems. By working together, they can better plan and understand each other’s needs,” said West Virginia Commissioner of Agriculture Kent Leonhardt. “We are thankful that Director Steve McDaniel and the WVDNR are willing to partner on this initiative.”
“West Virginia state parks are proud to take part in this project to promote locally produced food items in our state park restaurants,” said WVDNR Director Stephen McDaniel. “This will be a summertime treat for our visitors and give them another reason to spend more time in our beautiful state parks.”
Locations and dates for the dinners are as follows:
- Pipestem Resort State Park: Thursday, June 14
- Cacapon Resort State Park: Thursday, June 21
- Cass Scenic Railroad Historical State Park: Thursday, Aug. 2
- Chief Logan Lodge: Thursday, Aug. 9
- North Bend State Park: Thursday, Aug. 16
- Holly River State Park: Thursday, Aug. 30
- Hawks Nest State Park: Thursday, Sept. 13
- Blackwater Falls State Park: Thursday, Sept. 27
Seating is limited for these special meals. For more information, visit wvstateparks.com/farm-table. To make a reservation for the first dinner on June 14, call Pipestem Resort at 304-466-1800.
“If you are interested in bringing local, fresh food to your table, visit farmfreshwv.com to find a local farmers market near you,” Mascari said.
For more information, contact Mascari at West Virginia Farmers Market Association: wvfarmers.org, [email protected] or 304-282-9583.