U.S. News and World Report, the online magazine whose annual rankings have sent more than one college president to an early retirement, posted a “slide show” version of Food Town, USA. With photos of the seven cities accompanied by a brief descriptive commentary for each one, the piece provides a nice overview of the book’s themes and places. Check it out at https://www.usnews.com/news/cities/slideshows/author-of-food-town-usa-says-food-may-bring-back-struggling-us-cities?onepage.

Collected Works, the literary hub and cultural Mecca of Santa Fe, New Mexico, will be hosting a reading and discussion by me of Food Town, USA. I will be joined by conversant extraordinaire, Rebecca Baran-Rees, the director of the highly acclaimed northern New Mexico mobile grocery project, known as Mogro to those in the know. Collected Works, an independent book store, is located at 202 Galisteo Street in charming downtown Santa Fe. The event begins at 6:00 PM on November 14. If you already have plans for that evening, cancel them. If you live within 300 miles of Santa Fe, it’s only a day’s drive. The Santa Fe Airport is providing overflow parking for private jets.

I had the good fortune to spend a few days last week in Jacksonville, Florida, one of my “seven unlikely cities,” to promote my book and help launch the First Coast Food Network, a brand-new food coalition dedicated to raising up a sustainable and just food system for everybody. Check them out at https://www.facebook.com/groups/613270859203183/?tn-str=*F. And if you happen to wander into Jacksonville, I would strongly recommend a stop at 1748 Bakehouse, a recently opened café and bakery that I referenced in my book. Their “breakfast sandwich” packs so much wallop that it will inspire average people to rise early every morning, run 10 miles, and pen stirring prose for hours!

Looming on the appearance horizon is this year’s Community Food System conference on December 9-11 in Savannah, Georgia. I’ll be conducting a food policy council workshop with several colleagues from Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future. I also hope to be signing and selling books! For more information go to https://cfsconference.nutrition.tufts.edu/join/register.

Be prepared! Pop-up book talks could occur anywhere – NYC subway stations, Chicago Transit stops, fishing boats in the Gulf of Alaska – so stay tuned and I will try to give at least 24-hour notice.

One of the most consistent and dedicated voices in the U.S. food movement is Melinda Hemmelgarn, whose Food Sleuth Radio comes at ya soft and slow from the caverns of KOPN in partly sunny downtown Columbia, Missouri. Her broadcasts are picked up by over 50 public and community radio stations across the country. She was kind enough to interview me not just once but twice (it took me two takes to get it right)! You can hear the interview on November 21 and 28 (no better way to celebrate Thanksgiving!) at 5:00 PM Central Time, and a week later on Food Sleuth’s various partner stations. For more information, including podcasts, go to https://www.facebook.com/groups/336205368377/

Rural food policy councils and the needs and issues they address have not received the attention they deserve, except when demagogues exploit people’s fears and woes for their own political gain. In an attempt to better understand the opportunities and challenges of rural life, I spent a few days touring northwest Kansas and then writing about the awesome work of the Western Prairie Food, Farm, and Community Alliance. You can read the whole story right here https://assets.jhsph.edu/clf/mod_clfResource/doc/WINNE_Rural%20Kansas%20FPCs.pdf

Wayne Roberts, former director of the Toronto Food Policy Council, is a cool and crackling Canadian dude whose food system and policy competencies are as vast as North America itself. I’ve enjoyed his nearly every word – books, blogs, tweets, newsletters – over the years as he slices and dices his way through the good, the bad, and the ugly of the global food scene. He’s serving up some tasty morsels on his new newsletter that you can check out and sign up for at https://wayneroberts.us12.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=ab7cd2414816e2a28f3b35792&id=1373397df7. I give it my five chile rating – smokie and hot, with a velvety finish!