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FED: Food Expo & Discussion

  • County Line Orchard 200 South County Line Road Hobart, IN, 46342 United States (map)

Join us on Wednesday, March 8, 2017 for a daylong event exploring food topics, made possible by a grant from Legacy Foundation.  FED is open to all — whether you eat food, play a role in the food system, or have a passion for food issues! Come for any part of the day. 

Check out our speaker bios!

  • 8:00am PRODUCER/BUYER SPEED NETWORKING (advance registration requested)
  • 8:30am Registration
  • 9:30am Welcome & KEYNOTE - We are honored to have Sara Stewart of The Unity Gardens as our Keynote Speaker.
  • 10:30am PANEL DISCUSSIONS - Topics for consumers, food producers, and community organizers will include:
    • Urban Farming & Community Gardens
      Featuring Alma White (Stewart House), Pastor Curtis Whittaker (Faith Farms), Dominique Edwards (Urban Farming Advocate), Pastor Marty Henderson (Peace Garden & Farms) • Come to be inspired by this diverse group of panelists representing various grassroots urban farming initiatives. Gary, Indiana is home to several established and burgeoning urban farms with exciting business potential and youth engagement initiatives.
    • Aquaponics & Hydroponics
      Featuring Jennifer Shelhart, Kimberly Newhard, & Rob Walker • The symbiotic nature of aquaponics is mesmerizing! From home scale to commercial scale, aquaponics is an exciting new way to grow food, save energy and generate income – all without huge capital investments or space needed!
    • Sustainable Nutrition
      Featuring Allyson Straka (Frozen Garden), Damien Appel (Native Roots Farm), Suezanna Haywood, & Virginia Pleasant • Our panel of experts will address the struggles of small farms and food consumers, and shed light on the incredible nuances of locally grown nutrients. From the soil to your fork, come and learn what folks are doing to ensure that locally grown food is not only healthy and nutritious, but also sustainable and affordable.
    • Community Project Design
      Featuring Elias Crim (C-Lab), Sara Stewart (Unity Gardens), & Pastor Nate Loucks (The Pax Center) • Do you have an idea about how to solve a problem in your neighborhood or community? Are you ready to roll up your sleeves to encourage a vibrant, local food economy? Join this session for steps and tips for community groups, non-profits, and individuals who want to start a community project. Leave with resources, support, and inspiration so you can forge ahead with new food projects in 2017!
  • 12:30pm LOCAL FOOD LUNCH - Included in ticket price.
    • Lemon Herb Gunthorp Chicken Breast with Gotham Greens Basil (GF)
    • Baked Rice with Husk Butternut Squash, Local Parmesan Cheese and Butler Wine (V & GF)
    • Sauteed Husk Green Beans and Local Shiitake Mushrooms in Pasture's Delights Butter (V & GF)   
    • Fresh Gotham Greens Salad with Goat Cheese Feta, Strawberries and Walnuts, drizzle with Trader's Point Yogurt and Acorn Acres Honey dressing(V & GF)  
  • 1:00pm OPEN MIC - Share your ideas! Plus, participate in our collaborative wall piece envisioning the future of food in Northwest Indiana, and enjoy these micro-workshops on the Open Mic stage:
    • Wild Edibles (Kathy Sipple, CoThrive Time Bank)
    • Fermentation (Chef Pat Niebling, 3Floyds)
    • Growing Ginger (Liz Aquino, Lane’s End Farm)
    • Revitalizing our Communities with Urban Agriculture (Dominique Edwards, NWI Food Council)
    • Composting (Rudy & Barbara Kunshek, Porter County Master Recyclers & Composters)
  • 2:30pm EXPO - Discover local food producers, food-based businesses, non-profits, and other businesses and organizations, including: Alive and Well Health and Wellness • Anna’s Small Batch Kombucha • Cherry Stop • CoThrive Time Bank • Fairstream Farms • Frozen Garden • Hansings Eggs • Indiana Grown • Indiana Healthy Food Access Coalition • JJ Cattle • JT Shrimp • KOYAH • La Porte Farmers Market • Lakeside Lavender • Nature’s Cupboard • Prairie Mills Products • Purdue Extension • Richert/Phillips Farms • South Bend Farmers Market • Sprigati gourmet tomato sauce • Sundance Botanicals
  • 3:30pm COCKTAILS & CONNECTIONS - Expo continues and cash bar available.

This collaborative event will be focused on cultivating connections across Northwest Indiana. Let's get to know one another, learn together, and brainstorm ways to work together. Everyone who wants to participate is welcome. A limited number of need-based scholarships are available. Please email us to request a scholarship ticket. 

Tickets can be purchased at the door with cash, or purchased online in advance. Reserve yours today!

Thank you!

The following organizations support grassroots action to build a just, sustainable, and thriving locally-oriented food system for all in Northwest Indiana. Please join us in giving a tremendous thank you to our sponsors for making this event possible! 


We’re also grateful to have a passionate, hardworking group of volunteers pitch in and bring FED to life alongside the Council board. Current volunteers include folks from CoThrive Time Bank, County Line Orchard, Home Team of LaPorte County, The Pax Center, and Purdue Extension, along with additional community members. Our all-volunteer team has already invested over 200 hours in this event!

Thank you to the 173 Northwest Indiana residents who took the time to complete our event planning survey last fall for the Food Summit!  Your input helped us plan this event, and FED is the new name for the NWI Food Summit.

Expo Space

The Expo runs from 2:30 - 5:30pm. Exhibit space is intended for food producers, community groups, food businesses, and anyone who provides services or goods to local growers or consumers. Table space is $50 and includes general admission for one. Reserve your space using the ticket form.   

  • Each vendor is asked to donate one raffle item ($25 value).
  • An 8-foot table will be provided. No electricity will be available.  
  • Expo fee includes general admission access to the full event for one person, and lunch for one person. Please purchase additional general admission tickets for additional representatives of your organization.  
  • Vendor setup for the Expo will take place from 12:30pm - 2:15pm, and the Expo will run from 2:30pm - 6:00pm (overlapping with Cocktail Hour).


Join the Facebook event for updates, or sign up for email. Spread the word with #FEDNWI.

Sponsorship opportunities are still available, and start at $80. Download sponsorship information (PDF) and reserve your spot now for maximum visibility!

Earlier Event: March 2
Indiana Small Farms Conference