Michael Tierney, Big Ugly

Step by Step

One of the advantages of being around for a long time (Big Ugly Community Center is 23 this fall, Step by Step is 30) is that when people are looking for partners for out of the box ideas, they think of us.

On October 6, Big Ugly Community Center will host the first of what we hope will be an annual signature event, a Farm to Table fundraising dinner that is part of the Hatfield McCoy Food Heritage Dinner Series.  The WV Food and Farm Coalition and our old friend and frequent Grow Appalachia workshop instructor Jenny Totten invited us to be part of the series.

For the past two months, we have planned a series of events that might draw people to the event. We scheduled it to be part of our annual fall festival (that goes back to 1995 and our first carnival and fundraiser for the Big Ugly Community Center).  We scheduled our last workshop for the season for Grow Appalachia—that will both help people winterize their garden but also train people (and provide the supplies) for our gardeners to raise micro-greens indoors over the winter.  And of course, our children and local musician performers will share music.

Our challenge has been that we always give food away.  Big Ugly is in the poorest census track of Lincoln County, which has never been off the Appalachian Regional Commission’s distressed county list.  So for starters, we created two levels of tickets, $15 for community members and $30 for folks from outside the immediate community.  We created a slightly less expensive children’s menu so we could remain family friendly so kids can eat free.

In addition, we are drawing on our local gardeners as much as possible for the menu, lovingly shared below:


The menu for Chic on the Creek, prepared by our Chef Rowan Zoeller

Finally, in keeping our tradition of having as many volunteers (cooking, serving the tables, cleaning up) we are seeking sponsors from our donor base to sponsor a volunteer so they can eat free (but we can still reach our fundraiser goals).

Please, come by on October 6th for crafts, carnival games, learning how to winterize your garden, and to grow micro-greens.  And stay for the fellowship and great local eats.