Page County Public Schools
“I am very excited to have the opportunity to purchase local products for school meals. The quality has been exceptional and it is a win-win situation for all of us. I hope to increase our purchases next year.” — Diane Dovel, Page County Schools Food Service Director
For immediate release:
Page County Schools plan ‘Local Day’ with Page County Grown
Luray, Virginia – May 19, 2012 – Students in Page County Public Schools will get a ‘taste’ – literally – of their agricultural heritage when they are served locally-grown food for breakfast and lunch May 31.
Director of Food Services Diane Dovel, a member of the locally-grown initiative, developed the concept in order to educate the county’s children about eating foods raised or grown in the Shenandoah Valley. Educational materials will be distributed to students, and they will be greeted by staff in aprons bearing the Page County Grown logo.
“I have made the commitment, through the Farm-to-School Program, to purchase more locally grown/produced foods,” Dovel says. Page County Grown has been an integral part of this expanding program. I see this as an opportunity to increase student interest in the foods they eat, and to educate them about how it is produced, all while providing the freshest product for their trays.”
Breakfast will consist of a Sausage/Egg/Cheese Casserole, with eggs from David Sours at Public House Produce and sausage from Steve Baker, Inc. in Mt. Jackson. Lunch features ground beef from Jared Burner’s Skyline Premium Meats, as well as Skyline’s beef stir fry strips. Vegetables for salads and the stir-fry will come from Public House Produce.
“Local food is a winning proposition for everyone involved,” says Burner, who serves as treasurer of the organization, and on the board of the Luray-Page County Chamber of Commerce, which has served as incubator for the program. “Producers, consumers and the local economy profit from the reinvestment of food dollars that otherwise leave the county.”
Sours adds, “As a farmer I am very proud to be providing fresh and healthy menu items for the children in our school systems. This opportunity is both important to the health of our children and is a beginning step in making an economic impact within the agriculture community. I appreciate the support of our school system and students in helping spread the word about Page County Grown products.”
The event is the first of the season for the group, which is celebrating its second year with a ‘Season Kick-off’ June 16 at Performing Arts Luray, and its Second Annual Farm Tour and Farm-to-Table Wine Dinner August 4. Members of the initiative will also provide food for the regional 4-H Camp in August, serving Page County Grown food to campers. To learn more, see the website at www.pagecountygrown.org.