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Dining on local bounty in Denver

Staff from Lincoln County’s Grateful Growers Farm/Harvest Moon Grille prepare meals Wednesday for the Farm City Week “Dine in Denver” event at Rock Springs Elementary School.

Annual event moves east

Staff Writer

Farm City Week rolls on, as another event came to a close Wednesday night at Rock Springs Elementary in Denver. “Dinner in Denver” was a sold-out meal that drew in 85 local residents who had the chance to try catered dining from a Charlotte-based restaurant that has been recognized in Southern Living magazine– Harvest Moon Grille.
Owners Cassie Parsons and Natalie Veres own a 10-acre farm in Denver, where they produce the locally grown food their customers with later eat at the restaurant.
Ribs, fried chicken and corn and pepper salad were among the choices on the menu for the agriculture enthusiasts who were in attendance on Wedesday.
Lincoln County Cooperative Extension Agent for Agriculture Libby Yarber was pleased with the diverse crowd, she told the Times-News on Wednesday, and was surprised and glad to see so many children — though the home-made ice cream may have helped make that happen.
County Cooperative Extension Agent for Family and Consumer Sciences Leigh Guth credits the Denver Farmers Market for helping draw the eastern Lincoln residents to the event, which has recently expanded its summer days and hours of operation.
The market opened at 5 p.m., whose booths dinner attendees were encouraged to peruse before eating across the lot.
Yarber’s goal for moving the dinner, which has been held in Lincolnton in previous years, was to introduce residents in other parts of the county to the importance of local agriculture. We all have to eat and it affects all of us, she said.
Five tables were decorated to coincide with the “agriculture any way you slice it” theme. The participants chose decorations ranging from honeybees, “bees save local agriculture,” to watermelon-decorated, red-and-white tablecloths and other produce-inspired spreads.
Caleb Street, a 4-H’er, was the winner of the picnic-decorating contest with his honeybee idea.
Denver residents Todd and Judy James heard about the dinner through a friend and though they aren’t farmers, and don’t have much agriculture in their family history, they are interested in local crops and were intrigued by the restaurant that was catering.
(Judy) James marveled at the corn and pepper salad, while her husband anxiously awaited dessert — pound cake with a peach glaze.
For more information on the next Farm City Week event — Cooperative Extension’s Farm Tour — call (704) 736-8452.

Diners enjoy the feast.

Image courtesy of KaAnSuli | Lincoln Times-News

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