Field Days, Food Blogs, and Free Beer!

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Here’s me!

Hello, all!

My name is Clarissa Klostermann. I’m the second half of the Green Iowa AmeriCorps Summer Land & Water Stewards Team working with Iowa Rivers Revival this summer.

Here’re some fun facts about me:

  1. I grew up on a small farm in northeast Iowa, and I like to say I’m from The Field of Dreams.
  2. Puns and Dad Jokes are two of my favorite things.
  3. Ducks are 100% the best animal (in my humblest of opinions).

I graduated from the University of Iowa in December with majors in English & Creative Writing and American Studies. I’m super passionate about food, food security, and food sustainability. So, this summer, for my independent project through Green Iowa, I decided to try to spend the month of July eating only locally grown and produced food (I wanted to see if it could be done, what the environmental affects were, how expensive it was, and so on). If you’re interested in seeing how that process is going, you should check out my blog. It’s very exciting, and it’s very informative.

Other things I’ve been up to since being with IRR:

Erin and I have interviewed fifteen great people for the Master River Stewards Program (and we have our last interview coming up next week). As a reminder, we’re turning the lesson on Agricultural Practices, Policies, and Iowa’s Rivers into podcasts and videos which will be available for the general public right here on IRR’s website (which means all of you get to access the plethora of information we’ve been gathering). We’ll continue to keep you updated as things progress throughout the month of July!

Photo by Kamyar Enshayan at a previous Field Day.

I’ve been learning SO much. And I’ve pretty well come to the conclusion that the best way to learn something is to talk to the folks doing exactly what I want to learn about (groundbreaking stuff, I know). So, to bring it back to my blog again real quick, I think the best way to learn about our food (how it’s grown and produced) is to talk to farmers. And there’s quite of few of them around, which makes it nice. All that is to say, I’ve been talking to farmers this summer because they’re really great teachers. And, next week, Erin and I will be headed to western Iowa to visit some farmers in Sutherland. Also, y’all are invited!

Want to know more? Of course you do.

Our friends at Practical Farmers of Iowa and the University of Northern Iowa have gotten together to put on a field day all about organic row crop production and mechanical weed control. It’s on Wednesday, July 17th. They also have a field day in August regarding the transition to organic with diversity to improve soils. That one’s in Remsen, Iowa. Interested in other field days? Check out this link!

Look at how much fun these folks are having!

And one last exciting opportunity for y’all: Tomorrow, you can catch Erin, Molly, and I out at Sleepy Hollow doing a creek cleanup for a stretch of Four-Mile Creek. We’ll have sunscreen and bug spray, and it’ll be a great time. We’d love to see you there! It’s from 10AM – 12PM, and there’s parking available at the Sleepy Hollow Sports Park (4051 Dean Avenue, Des Moines, Iowa). And if seeing us there isn’t enough, REI is providing us all with one free drink ticket at 80/35 afterwards. So, free beer. Also, Erin made a great flyer, which y’all should check out.

So, join us tomorrow morning if you can. We’d love to see you. If you’re up to learning from farmers, definitely check out a field day (did I mention they’re free?). And, if you’re curious at all about what I’m eating, where I’m buying it, and what I’m learning this month as a locavore, check out my blog. It’ll be a great time.

Best,

Clarissa

PS–There was an ice cube chilling in a tall glass of water. Under it’s breath, the ice said, “I was water before it was cool.”