MAY DAY AT THE MARKET

Posted on by Susan
MayDay_2018Saturday, May 5, 9 am-12 pm
 FREE EVENT!

(Also see article: “Valley Co-op Celebrates May Day at the Market” in the Herald-Mail, May 2, 2018)

Celebrate Spring – farm-style! Bring the whole family to the Historic City Farmers’ Market on Saturday, May 5, 9 am-12 pm, to ring in spring.   

  • Farm animals petting zoo
  • Plant your own seeds
  • Talk to Local Farmers
  • Enjoy Live Music
  • Taste local food
  • Get creative with fun crafts, and
  • try a free yoga class (8:30-9 or 11:30-12).

Music provided by Don Oehser. Sponsored by the Valley Co-op of Washington County, MDand the City of Hagerstown.  

March Meetings

Marketing Meeting (all Welcome to Attend): 3/12, 6:00pm, prior to BOD meeting
Board of Directors & Open Member Meeting, 3/12 6:30 PM.

Meetings held at the Valley Co-op Market Space, City Market, Hagerstown, MD

Recycling and Minimizing Plastic Use at Good Gracious Gardens

plastic_cups

~Collect these containers for seedling reuse~

Once again, I’ll be offering vegetable and herb seedlings for sale through the Valley Co-op this spring.  And, once again, I’d like to re-use your yogurt cups and other plastic cups/containers for potting my seedlings!  Plastic in the environment is such a serious hazard to wildlife, and I’m more committed than ever to NOT using any new plastic in my business and, as much as possible, in my life.  So, please bring to the Co-op your empty (and rinsed out, please!) 6-oz yogurt cups, as well as other containers that are of similar size or larger — such as 6- to 16-oz drink cups, and plant pots that are at least as big as a yogurt cup.  (The small “6-pack” plant containers you buy at Lowe’s, for example, are a bit too small for me to use.  See photo for guidance.)  I urge you to minimize your own purchasing of plastic containers and packaging – but as long as we have some plastic in our lives, at least we can re-use, and then recycle, it!  Here’s some motivation:  https://vimeo.com/25563376 (a beautiful and heartbreaking short film) and https://thelastplasticstraw.org/ (just say NO to plastic straws!)  THANK YOU! – Mary

Deadline for BOD Applications is 1/14/18

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Applications are now being accepted for candidates for our Board of Directors. This election cycle we have two current BOD members ending their two-year terms. We have also received two resignations for BOD members who needed to fulfill family and work obligations. As per our By-Laws we are REQUIRED to fill a minimum of three seats this election cycle.  Our Board can have a maximum of 7 Directors.

To qualify, candidates must:

  • be a Co-op member in good standing (membership is current and no debts owed).
  • complete the candidate application by the 1/14 deadline.
    be approved and presented for election to membership by the existing Board of Directors.
  • commit time to provide leadership to the Co-op. (in general, 1-2 meetings/month)
  • Interested members are encouraged to attend the next BOD Meeting to learn more about the Co-op business and operations on December 18th at 6PM. For immediate questions, please direct them to Storemanager@valleycoop.org

Without leadership we will not have a Co-operative. Please consider giving your time and talents.

Applications are available to members only via our weekly member email or by contacting our store manager at storemanager@valleycoop.org

RESOLUTIONS YOU CAN KEEP WITH VALLEY CO-OP:

Posted on by Susan
  • Eating healthier (& better for the planet):Animals raised humanely By purchasing meats and produce through the Co-op you have the benefit of knowing your producer, their practices, and subsequently have better knowledge about the food you eat. Co-op producers are not large commercial animal or agricultural operations. It is raised within our region and not transported over extensive miles. The food your receive is fresher and healthier with less risks of exposure to pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics or hormones.
  • Keeping your dollars local: The money you spend at Valley Co-op builds a stronger local economy. Your business not only keeps the Co-op functioning, but provides income for local employees and supports the Historic City Market. We used local contractors when needed for services like electrical or refrigeration repair, and of course, purchases of locally sourced products support independent businesses.
  • Supporting your local farmer: Its hard work to be a small business owner\farmer. Their success & livelihood cannot be achieved without your purchases and support. With each purchase you put money directly into the hands of the farmer, not a big corporation’s. In Maryland, if every household purchased just $12 worth of farm products for eight weeks, over $200 million would be put back into the pockets of our local farmers.(Source: www.buylocalchallenge.com)

City Market is Growing! Vendor list as of November 2017

Posted on by Susan

Below is the current list of vendors at the Hagerstown City Market as of November 11th.  Four more vendors are anticipated to join in the next few weeks.  Visit these and Valley Co-op at the Market on Saturdays! Open 5.am. to noon.

  1. Fran Clingan- Snookies Cookies
  2. Sharon & Duane Eby- Country View Products
  3. Sommer Gilliam- Kreeative Kreations
  4. Etta Lewis- Etta’s Crafts and Stuff
  5. Charles and Donna Litton- Litton’s Produce (SEASONAL 10/28)
  6. Reggie and Elsie Martin- Stop, Buy N’ See
  7. Naomi Martin- Violets & More
  8. Jeff and Debi Serig- Jeff & Debi’s Grill
  9. Jean Volcy- Mama Jean’s
  10. John Young- M&J Candies
  11. Tammy Crosten- Jewelry Box Designs
  12. Tina Robertson- Scentsy
  13. Snix Snax Shax- Leigh Ann Hixon
  14. Payne Monroe- Payneless Desserts
  15. Delores Strawser- I Bake It, You Take It Bakery
  16. Gwen Ford- Soaps and Stuff
  17. Vivienne Smith- Rooster Moon Coffeehouse
  18. Crystal DeShong- Crystals Exotic Candles

Vendor descriptions are provided on The Hagerstown City Market Website.

To learn more about being a vendor, visit www.hagerstownmd.org/162/Historic-City-Farmers-Market

Welcome supplier: South Mountain Creamery

Posted on by Susan

south-mountain-creamery_logo

Starting October 14, 2017 Valley Co-op will be offering dairy products from South Mountain Creamery, which is located in Middletown, Md.

Co-op members will be able to order milk, half and half, yogurt and butter. Milk will be offered in quarts and half-gallon quantities, both in glass bottles.  Bottles have at $2 deposit, which is refunded upon return.

From the South Mountain Creamery website:

“Our cows spend their days on pasture. Fresh air, sunlight, and endless grass is provided for them. They also come and go as they please from their freestall barn, where they can get comfortable out of the weather. In addition to grazing, we feed them a nutritious mix of the crops we grow ourselves. Our dairy and beef herd are born and raised on the farm. Our laying chickens are cage-free and certified humanely raised.

We take pride in being good stewards of the land. All of our land is under agricultural preservation. We use cover crops to protect from erosion, use non-GMO seeds with proper crop rotation. We have a close relationship with our customers, and understand your food concerns. We consider these concerns with everything we do and with the standards and expectations that we set with our farmer partners. We are here to provide you the best, most nutritious local food, that you will feel good about eating.

Our dairy products are made right on the farm, from start to finish. Our cows are milked 50 yards away from our production plant. Within 12 hours, the milk is bottled or made in to yogurt, cream, butter, sour cream, or ice cream. “

Read more about South Mountain Creamery farm practices, their history and dairy business on their website: southmountaincreamery.com/.  They also have a Facebook page and Instagram account.

Kraut demonstration – 10/14/17

Posted on by Susan

Kraut Workshop on October 14, 10:00 AM at the Co-op Market
Join the Sour Mountain Picklin’ Boys for the second in our continuing series on Fermentation as Preservation! Last month’s successful Dill Pickle workshop produced a crock of very sharp, delightfully healthful pickles. This month we feature Sauerkraut Basics, using nothing but fresh cabbage from the Coop, salt, and spices. Bring quart or half-gallon wide-mouth jars and lids – we’ll provide the rest. We have a limited number of plastic airlocks that make the process still more foolproof – first come, first served to borrow these from the Coop (or buy them at cost).

SAVE THE DATE: ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP AND OPEN MEETING 2018

Annual Meeting Oct 2018

October 23, 2018, 6:30 – 8 PM
Co-op Market Space

This is the annual meeting required by our bylaws – every member should attend. The meeting is also OPEN TO THE PUBLIC as part of our effort to dramatically grow our member base.

Light locally-sourced refreshments will be served.
Please bring a friend, a neighbor, a co-worker!

Formal agenda to follow – for now, please plan on attending to discuss:

  • How we are doing since the move
  • What more we need to do to meet more needs for more people
  • How we hope to become a full-service, member-owned food cooperative
  • What new programming and services we hope to offer. Some ideas (no promises yet!):
    • Explore delivery options for orders
    • Bring “exotic,” international ingredients to our website
    • Holding meetings at community sites (schools, churches, restaurants, theaters) to raise our profile
    • A “Kitchen Equipment Library” to allow members to share big-ticket, rarely-used items like canners, huge pots, presses, crocks, etc…
    • Bring your own ideas as well
We have a lot to celebrate and a lot still to do.

A Local Taste of Autumn: Farm to Table Meal at Shepherd’s Spring

A Local Taste of Autumn: Farm to Table Meal at Shepherd’s Spring, November 12, 3-5 pm. This is a great opportunity to support local farmers/vendors, as well as enjoy good food with good company in a beautiful setting. $25 RSVP required.

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