4.20.2009

Dear Friends,
Do you remember this exercise from when you were a kid?

"If I could be President for a day, I would make sure roadside stands never ran out of apple cider doughnuts and strawberries were always in season."


Well, I've been playing that recently. A lot. I've decided I would also plant celeriac on the White House lawn, and that I would ensure that it was always, always sunny when you wanted to take a walk on the beach, and that every school child sat down to a healthy lunch. I've also decided that I definitely, without a doubt, would not be here, asking you for money to help support the Local Food Report, because public radio would be a universally recognized blessing and all 303,824,640-ish Americans would regularly empty their pockets to ensure the very best coverage possible.

Sadly, I'm not President.

Also, I don't even technically work for a public radio station—the Local Food Report is independently produced by Jay Allison and Viki Merrick of Atlantic Public Media, who very kindly have given me a chance—so even if every American did give loads of money to NPR, we'd still need to come up with some funds.

Which is why I am here, asking you for money.

We need to raise enough to keep this show afloat. It costs us about $350 to produce each week's piece—between travel, time, and splitting the funds between APM and me. We started out, originally, with a grant—one from Open Studio Project through the Corporation for Public Broadcasting—but that's run out. We receive some money for distribution to the station, and we are incredibly grateful to have Edible Cape Cod and Truro Vineyards on board as our very (!) first (!) sponsors (!), but we are still a ways from paying the bills.

So if you believe in what we're doing—if you believe in eating locally, in spreading awareness about our edible resources and local food producers, in supporting ourselves and building a community in the process—please help. Anything at all would be awfully generous, and the more people you can get on board, the better.

After all, the whole idea of this is to make a template. If we can raise a successful Local Food Report in our community and spread the word about it, we can get other communities doing this, too. We can create a whole national network of reporters updating their communities on what's growing and what's good, and ultimately offer everyone a much better looking dinner plate. (Or bowl. You know what I mean.)


Once you've thought it over a bit, and taken a deep breath, and shut out the economy and the fact that you've just paid your taxes, what do you say we make this happen. The sooner the better—just click here, or on that purple link up at the top left of the page—and donate away. The money goes to straight to Atlantic Public Media, which will use it for this show only. Oh! and don't forget to spread the word as far and wide as you can. One of these days, we just might find a way to get your aunt in Oklahoma the very same sort of local food programming.

Thank you, thank you, for everything you do. I couldn't ask for a better crowd. And tomorrow, I promise, there will be chocolate cake—rich, fudgy, and easy to make.

All the best,

Elspeth

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