From an article from the Vernon County Broadcaster:
LA FARGE — The Kickapoo Country Fair, taking place on Saturday, July 30, in La Farge, announced its keynote speakers are to be nationally renowned food leaders Will Allen and Andrew Zimmern.
Allen, an urban agriculture pioneer and founder of Growing Power, a farm and community food center in Milwaukee, and Zimmern, chef and star of the Travel Channel’s hit series, “Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern,” both hail from the Midwest and have helped establish the region as a center for food culture and advocacy. Rounding out the day-long celebration will be country music headliner The Kentucky Headhunters.
Organic Valley, a farmer-owned cooperative with 1,636 organic farmers nationwide – dozens of which are located just miles from the fair grounds – created the Kickapoo Country Fair eight years ago as a healthy alternative to the traditional deep-fried fair. Nestled amid the steep hills and coulees of southwestern Wisconsin’s Driftless region, this year’s Kickapoo Country Fair will attract thousands of attendees for a day-long exploration of all things food, including hands-on workshops, craft and cooking classes, issues-based seminars, poetry and theater performances, farm tours, live music and more-all offered at an affordable price for families. Passes providing access to all activities are only $5 for adults, $2 for kids 12 and under, and free for kids five and under.
“We’re excited to spice up this year’s event with two food leaders who, similar to our co-op, have been instrumental in helping establish the Midwest‘s prominent role in the changing food movement,” Theresa Marquez, chief marketing officer for Organic Valley, said. “The opportunity to hear from such renowned personalities, chefs, farmers and advocates, all while eating delicious local and organic food in the beautiful Kickapoo region, is truly a unique food experience only a dedicated community like ours could cook up.”
Allen, Zimmern Take Center Stage
Will Allen, named one of TIME Magazine’s “World’s Most Influential People” in 2010 and recipient of the prestigious MacArthur Foundation’s “genius” grant, will take center stage at 11:30 a.m.
Allen is among the preeminent thinkers of our time on agriculture and food policy and systems and is the founder of Growing Power. Based in Milwaukee, Growing Power serves as a “living museum” or “idea factory” on sustainable food systems for the young, the elderly, farmers, producers and other professionals ranging from USDA personnel to urban planners. Training areas include everything from urban agriculture, permaculture and food distribution, to community engagement and participatory leadership.
At 1:30 p.m., Andrew Zimmern will address fair-goers with a keynote speech and cooking demonstration. Zimmern is a Twin Cities native, James Beard Award-winning TV personality, chef, food writer, teacher, and is regarded as one of the most knowledgeable personalities in the food world. As the co-creator and host of the Travel Channel’s hit series “Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern” and “Andrew Zimmern’s Bizarre Food World,” he travels the world exploring food unique to various communities. From world-class restaurants to jungle carts to Kickapoo Country Fair booths, Zimmern is all about discovering and sharing authentic, local food experiences.