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Eat Local with Dirt

The challenge: Eat only food that's grown, raised, produced or caught within 250 miles of your home in the bountiful month of September -- with five exceptions of your choosing.

Your exceptions are totally up to you, but they tend to be staples you can't live without: coffee, for instance. You don't have to select your exceptions right away. It might make sense for you to see what you're craving, or having trouble tracking down locally, and add exceptions as you go.

You also get to use unlimited spices, regardless of where they're from.

What does it mean to "eat local?" It's a really good question; the phrase gets thrown around a lot. We mean it in the most persnickety sense. It doesn't mean just that the bread was baked here; it means the grain and other ingredients were actually grown here. This will require asking questions of the people selling or making your food. They may have to ask questions of a boss or someone they get ingredients from. That's good!

Where I live, the 250-mile radius encompasses the shoreline from New York to Massachusetts, and reaches from here south to Delaware and north to Vermont. (I'm looking forward to exploring seafood.) You can play around with distances by going to Google maps and clicking the "walk" icon.

We will help you, and help each other, by seeking out and sharing sources for local staples, recipes, and places that offer completely local menu items where you can go out to eat and drink. The hope is that we will not only have a positive impact on the environment, local economy and your own health, but also that we'll build community. And yes, we will have prizes!

Are you in?

If so, select your challenge level, which determines the amount of time you're going to eat local. Ideally, you want to stretch yourself but not set yourself up for failure. We want this to be hard but fun. Hard fun is the most rewarding kind.


Share The Challenge with Your Friends!

Local Farmers' Market

New York

Tuesday

FLORIDA
Route 17A/Route 94 across from QuickCheck
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

NEWBURGH
Broadway between Landers and Johnson
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Wednesday

CORNWALL
Town Hall
10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

MONROE FARMERS' MARKET AT MUSEUM VILLAGE
Museum Village, Route 17M
9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Friday

GOSHEN
Church Park
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Saturday

MIDDLETOWN
Erie Way between Montgomery Street and Cottage Street
8a.m. to 1 p.m.

NEWBURGH
Newburgh Mall Parking Lot
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

PINE BUSH
Behind the Crawford Cultural Center
9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

PORT JERVIS
Farmers' Market Square at the corner of Hammond and Pike streets
9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

TUXEDO
Tuxedo Train Station
9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

WASHINGTONVILLE
29 West Main Street
9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Sunday

MONROE
Monroe Village Park and Ride near the ponds
9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

WARWICK
South Street Parking Lot
9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

WEST POINT
Municipal parking lot on Main Street
9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

New Jersey

WEST MILFORD
West Milford Presbyterian Church
Back parking lot
1452 Union Valley Road, West Milford
Wednesdays through Oct. 19
3 to 7 p.m.
wmfarmersmarket.org

Pennsylvania

Sunday

MILFORD
The Columns - 608 Broad Street
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

SPONSORS:

To become a sponsor, call Frank Curcio at 845-469-9000.

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West Milford, NJ