The Ottumwa Courier

September 5, 2013

Farm Crawl tours southeast Iowa

Courier staff writer

---- — FAIRFIELD — Hometown Harvest of Southeast Iowa will hold its third farm crawl of the year this Sunday in Fairfield and the surrounding area.

The "Savor the Flavor" Farm Crawl, now in its second year, begins at noon and lasts until 6 p.m., and everyone is welcome to attend any and all of the stops. There is no cost to participate, but each stop will have food and other items that can be purchased.

The farm crawl is intended to educate and raise awareness of how food production in the area works, as well as a way for the farmers to show off their produce and so participants can sample some local delicacies.

"The crawl is meant to highlight that there are farmers in the area providing things we can eat," Jan Swinton, local food coordinator, said. "We are trying to encourage anybody, young people especially, to grow food themselves."

Included in the agenda for the day are visits to four farms, two greenhouses and two wineries, where visitors will be able to tour and catch a special glimpse of the everyday operations.

"It gives people an idea of what these farmers do and why things happen," Swinton said.

THE Greenhouse Project, a new greenhouse site on Ninth Street in Fairfield, is slated as the starting point for the crawl. Swinton will discuss the site and how the greenhouse will be heated by using the waste from the Shaus-Vorhies Manufacturing Plant. Then participants will travel the surrounding area, stopping at Cedar Creek Produce, the Cedar Valley Winery, Atwood Pumpkin Patch, Pekin School, Elaine Blair's aronia patch, Rolling Prairie Acres and the Wooden Wheel Winery.

Food will be served at several of the stops, and the Sigourney Public Library will be providing a wide variety of nourishments all day. Travelers will be able to sample wine and baked goods along the journey and can enjoy Julia Stutzman's brick oven pizza, Claude's Aronia Granola Bars and other tasty treats at the library.

"There's a lot of interesting food out there," Swinton said. "This is a way to educate community about what we can grow in southeast Iowa."

For more information or to view the brochure for this year's "Savor the Flavor" Farm Crawl, visit and click on the events tab.