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Third annual Oswego County Harvest Dinner set for Oct. 12

Fall is just around the corner, which means Oswego County farmers are busy harvesting their bounty of fruits, vegetables and meats.

It also means planning is underway for the third annual Oswego County Harvest Dinner, which will take place Friday, Oct. 12.

The dinner will showcase the diversity of agriculture in Oswego County by featuring locally grown and sourced food.

The event is hosted by Cornell Cooperative Extension of Oswego County with the support of local farmers and agriculture businesses at the American Foundry in Oswego.

Attendees will get to sample dishes utilizing locally grown food and prepared by some of the area’s top chefs.

The 2012 featured chefs are Emil Nymander from the American Foundry, Brian Girard of Blue Plate Seafood, and Bill Hubel from Blue Moon Grill.

Tickets for the event must be purchased ahead of time. Prepaid reservations may be made by contacting Cornell Cooperative Extension of Oswego County at 963-7286 or e-mailing lkw39@cornell.edu. No tickets will be sold at the door.

The Oswego County Harvest Dinner will start with a social hour, including a sampling of Oswego County beverages.

Guests will be served a six-course meal showcasing Oswego County’s agricultural products followed by the guest speaker, author Tom Rivers.

There will also be a gift basket auction featuring Oswego County’s finest agricultural products and more.

Rivers, a reporter covering agriculture in Batavia, wrote a first-person newspaper series about farm work that won state and national awards.

With the series garnering so much success and attention, it was decided to compile it into a book with added background and information.

This book, “Farm Hands: Hard Work and Hard Lessons from Western New York Fields,” is now in its sixth printing.

Rivers will share his perspective as an agricultural journalist who “got his hands dirty” by actually doing the work that brings food from field to fork.

The diversity of Oswego County land allows for the growth of a variety of agricultural products including onions, apples, meat, cheese, wine, maple syrup, honey, berries, plums, peaches, and a wide variety of vegetables.

Within the county there are at least seven local farmers markets, with one open almost every day of the week.

The agricultural community in this county generates $39.4 million in annual revenue from 639 farms and supplies over 5,000 jobs.

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