The Savannah Food Day Festival, held last year in Mother Matilda Beasley Park, has a new home in Daffin Park this Sunday from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. The event features food, of course, along with a transplanted Forsyth Farmers Market (Don’t worry, the farmers market will keep its normal hours in Forsyth Park on Saturday from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.). Children’s activities and musical performances are also on the agenda. The Savannah Bicycle Campaign will offer its popular Bike Valet service. A complete schedule and more information is available on the Savannah Food Day Festival website.
Count me among those shocked to hear that the brand new Food Lion store on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, which has been open for just over 10 months, is slated for closure. At the store’s groundbreaking on March 30, 2011, a store official told the Savannah Morning News,
“We are dedicated to being Savannah’s neighborhood grocery store.”
Apparently that level of dedication was not shared by Food Lion’s parent company, Delhaize America, which announced today it is closing 126 “underperforming stores.”
The store’s closing is a blow on multiple fronts, not least of which is the loss of jobs.
In July 2010 Savannah Morning News columnist Tom Barton wrote a column called “Crossing a ‘food desert,” in which he suggested:
“In terms of re-energizing this struggling corridor south of the I-16 flyover, this project isn’t just big. It’s humongous…There’s nothing like having a clean, well-stocked, competitively priced and convenient place to buy food and other necessities to make any area more desirable and contribute to healthier lifestyles.”
Late sleepers rejoice! The Forsyth Farmers Market is adjusting its hours this weekend due to the Savannah Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon. Normally held Saturdays, the event will shift to Sunday from 2-6 p.m. Those for whom the market has become a Saturday morning tradition need not worry. The market returns to its normal Saturday, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. timeslot next week.
And there’s more news out of the market: The season is being extended to Dec. 17 and will reopen earlier in 2012:
“We are proud to officially announce that we will continue to provide fresh produce, high quality meats and delicious prepared food until December 17th. We will then take a short winter break before starting the 2012 season on February 11th, 2 months earlier than we typically do. This represents a 30% increase in your market experience and a great way to indulge in the southern luxury of a year- long growing season.”
More information is available on the market website.
“Aimed at promoting healthy, sustainable, affordable, and just food systems in America, Food Day is a national grassroots mobilization backed by some of the most prominent voices for energizing the food movement … people will gather at events big and small and from coast to coast in homes, schools, colleges, churches, city halls, farmers’ markets, supermarkets, and elsewhere to raise awareness about food issues and advocate for change.”
The Savannah event includes live music, vendors, exhibitors and workshops. The festival is free and open to the public. The Savannah Bicycle Campaign will provide valet bike parking throughout the event.
Forsyth Park will be home to the City of Savannah’s annual Earth Day Festival again on Saturday, April 23. The long-running features individual events and programs that have become immensely popular. The Savannah Bicycle Campaign’s Earth Day Wheelie Bike ride, which attracts hundreds of cyclists, departs from the park at 4 p.m. Earlier in the day, the RecycleRama begins at 8 a.m. and offers drop off service for folks who want to recycle paint, batteries, cooking grease and other materials. Last year’s RecycleRama collected 8,500 pounds of paint and 1,000 tires. It ends at 11 a.m. on the dot. More than 100 exhibitors will offer information on topics from beekeeping to bicycling to green roofs. More information is available on the festival website.