Events

POSTPONED

We are disappointed to cancel this event, but caution makes sense these days. We will reschedule at a later date. Stay healthy, and please support your local farmers!

Spring 2020 Slow Money NC Gathering!
March 16th   6-9pm
Chelsea Theater, 1129 Weaver Dairy Rd, Chapel Hill, NC
Tickets here!

6-6:30pm    Slow Start: Mingle, light refreshments in Joe Van Gogh Coffee   Shop next door to the theater.  Cash bar in the Theater lobby.

6:30-8pm   Welcome and showing of Look and See: A Portrait of Wendell Berry.   This stunning cinematic portrait shows the changing landscapes and shifting values of rural America in the era of industrial agriculture, seen through the mind’s eye of renowned writer, farmer, and activist, Wendell Berry. The first documentary about Berry, one of America’s most significant living writers, Look and See was filmed in and around the rolling hills Kentucky – where Berry has lived and farmed since the mid-1960’s. Filmmaker Laura Dunn skillfully weaves Berry’s poetic and prescient words with gorgeous cinematography and the testimonies of his family and neighbors, all of whom are being deeply affected by the industrial and economic changes to their agrarian way of life.

Often called “a prophet for rural America,” Berry has long been a voice for the communities that are so often overlooked by the media. It’s a conversation that is more urgent now than ever, as we find ourselves in a deeply divided nation where so many Americans are disconnected from the farmers who feed them.

8-9pm  Slow Money NC Spring ‘Funds to Farm’ Fast Presentations.
Slow Money NC helps local, sustainable farmers & local food entrepreneurs connect with people in their community who want to support them. Several local farmers/food biz owners will present projects worth financing! Presenters include:   •  Samantha Gasson, owner, Bull City Farm   •   Jeff Sykes, owner, Sykes Farm   •   Chantel Johnson, farmer, Off Grid in Color, LLC

 


Grocery Story  ~ Author Events

Monday, June 3, 2019  Author of GROCERY STORY, Jon Steinman, stops by Chatham Marketplace in Pittsboro, NC on a book tour of 140 food coops across the US & Canada!
11am-1pm   Meet the Author 
4-6pm   Book Reading & Signing
6:30 – 8pm, Slow Money NC  hosts “Who Owns Your Grocery Store?” a talk and conversation with Jon Steinman and Evan Diamond, General Manager of Chatham Marketplace. Tickets for the evening event include local refreshments and cash bar, $10 at https://grocerystore.eventbrite.com.


Did you know that in the US, only 5 companies receive 67% of all grocery sales? Or that multinational food manufacturers stock supermarket shelves themselves to have control of what products you will see where, and that a significant chunk of supermarket profits come from high fees that food manufacturers must pay for using their “real estate”?  How does that impact local food producers? Who owns the grocery stores we shop at?

If you are concerned at the thought of a handful of chain retailers and multinationals deciding what food is available to you, we encourage you to join Slow Money NC on Monday, June 3, to welcome journalist Jon Steinman to Chatham Mills in Pittsboro.  These are just some of the big questions probed in Grocery Story: The Promise of Food Co-ops in the Age of Grocery Giants —  Steinman’s highly anticipated new book.

Endorsements
“A great read! Full of energy and eyes-wide-open hope. In an era of extreme economic concentration, Jon Steinman awakens us to elements of an arising democratic economy, hidden in plain sight. Grocery Store is, above all, an empowering tale we need now more than ever.” ~ Frances Moore Lappe, author of Diet for a Small Planet and most recently, coauthor of Daring Democracy


2019 Slow Money NC ‘Funds to Farms’ Gatherings

February 23, 2019 6-8pm at Wedge Brewery, Asheville, NC
Tuesday, March 12, 6-8pm  at the new Community Matters Cafe, Charlotte, NC

Wednesday, March 13, 6-8pm, Cocoa Cinnamon, Durham, NC

We had great presenters and solid turn-out  at all these gatherings!
If you would like to present your idea at the next event, please email us! Thanks!

Climate Carnival May 13th!

Climate change is serious, but it doesn’t have to be grim.
At least not in the ways we come together to cope with it.
We know it’s real and it’s terrifying.

But, no one is better at turning serious, scary, and seemingly grim topics into open, easy, powerful, fruitful discussions than Abundance NC.

Again and again they take on difficult topics of our time – like climate change, death, grief, the opoid epidemic, assaults on renewable energy, re-localizing food production – and transmit them into gatherings to create solutions through stronger, more meaningful community. One that honors our planet, offers deep appreciation for our loved ones both here and gone, and most importantly creates spaces, where we can be in each other’s company for much sought after mutual renewal.

Because we need that. I need that.

Join us today, May 13th, at the CLIMATE CARNIVAL, for yet another of Abundance NC’s brilliant and delightful community events addressing the most pressing topic of our time.

The event is at the Plant, so you can count on festive lights and tents, good food, a local beer and spirits cash bar, and a playground.

For our minds and hearts there will be well-informed, deeply thoughtful, and profoundly inspiring speakers. Audience questions and side conversations will take that to an even higher level.

We can do what we so enjoy. Spend time hanging out, maybe to engage in climate change topics – or to talk on other topics, to think together, and to play.

Creating the world we want to live in doesn’t have to be that hard. We can start right now, together with our friends – right here in our community.

I’ll be watching for you:)

With abundant gratitude,
Carol

“somehow, i never thought it would be so hard to loan money to strangers with no security and almost no return…”

When this email arrived I laughed out loud. Because the funniest jokes are about things that are true, or at least mostly true.

Jeff, in his generosity, had approached me about finding a local farmer that might need capital. So he drove a few miles down the road to meet with a farmer who lived near him. Jeff was ready to help with a loan to cover the cost of several new raised beds to grow more produce for local restaurants. Jeff offered his neighbor a low-interest loan for equipment he said he needed. But then when Jeff tried to actually make the loan, the farmer had found a way to get along a bit longer without needing to borrow money.

In the larger scheme of things, that’s great. Whenever possible the best course of action is to stay out of debt.

But Jeff is a willing potential Slow Money NC lender. He cares deeply about the local food movement, but he’s having trouble finding someone to help. Luckily he is also a great guy, with a wonderful sense of humor, as you can see by his light-hearted email above.

I talk about this phenomenon in my book, Financing Our Foodshed, in a section called “the seesaw.” Because that is exactly what I find myself trying to navigate!

Some days there are so many farmers and food entrepreneurs who have connected with me about needing a piece of equipment, or some start-up capital, or a walk-behind tiller, that it keeps me up at night.

Other times my challenge is helping folks like Jeff that want to make a difference in their local food system, but just need a way to make that happen.

You would think by now, after catalyzing over 160 direct, peer-to-peer Slow Money loans here in NC to some 98 sustainable farmers and food businesses that support them – that making these loans happen would be like falling off a log.

But social change is never quite as easy as that. After all, we are dealing with people here, and complicated regulations that are not written to make it an obvious or easy road for the little guy – the small business owner. Every day I meet good, extraordinary people, but with their time pressures, and quirkiness about money, and the myriad of details that come into play each time, working out these first-ever-in-history simple Slow Money loans – well, they just take time. And sometimes they become really Slow Money.

But they are each their own moment in history. Each is a radical departure of the money lending of our day. This is money that traditional lenders will not free up, being loaned to businesses that are re-engineering an inadequate and immoral food system. These are loans to the heroes we will celebrate tomorrow but who may too over-worked to hardly look up to receive our accolades.

And so each day I awake to hurl myself against a system that propels corporations ahead of ‘coop’erations, because I remain convinced it does not have to be so hard.

After a bite of Angelina’s Shepherd’s Pie made with local sweet potatoes, tomatoes and beef, two lenders took a huge bite out of the credit card debt that Angelina and her husband, John incurred when they added a seating area to Angelina’s Kitchen, their unique, gourmet Greek restaurant in the small town of Pittsboro, NC.

Angelina and John get a great story in the local paper!

Those two low-interest Slow Money loans meant that instead of paying nearly $500 a month for interest only, they could pay less than $200, and in just a few years were debt free.

We love making stories like that happen. As we bounce from one side of this seesaw to the other, our soils can become more fertile, our local foodsheds more resilient, and communities stronger and more fun to live in.

We can do this.  We can and we are – and it’s fun.  Join us!