This weekend we were able to attend the TerraVita event which is described as bringing together top chefs, food artisans, and educators to celebrate culinary excellence and sustainability in food and drink. The event has been going on since 2010 and has grown each year thanks to the efforts of Colleen Minton who had a vision of bringing all these great people together.

I attended the kick-off panel. It was a chance to listen to people share their stories about food. Panelists were:

  • Ashley Christensen, local rock star chef
  • Virginia Willis, Seafood Instigator
  • Margaret Gifford, Food Advocate
  • Mike Moore, The Blind Pig Asheville
  • Henry Hargreaves, Food Photographer
  • Kat Kinsman, Editor at Large, Tasting Table

Each had a wonderful story to tell and food was a common denominator for all of the story tellers. Ashley spoke about philanthropy. Virginia discussed sustainable seafood (Did you know there is an app for that? -Seafood Watch). Henry shared his images on death row inmates, last meals and how he uses photography to open conversations on social issues. Kat told a heart felt story of food and mental health. Mike spoke about paying it forward and creating a community outside of the kitchen. And Margaret spoke about connecting people who need food with people who make food.

This was a dynamic panel that had such great thoughts about food. I loved everything about the event. It was the perfect way to kick-off the weekend. I was inspired on how all these people are making a difference in the community surrounding food. So next time you pick up your fork to eat your next meal I encourage you to think about the following things:

  1. Where did this fish come from and is it sustainable?
  2. How does this restaurant I am eating at help support the local community?
  3. How can I help others who may need food?

For more information about the TerraVita Event please check out their website.