Take a bountiful 2016 LEEP garden harvest, add a side of the creative generosity of one donor, and the result is the inspiration for the First Annual Farm-to-Table Donor Appreciation Dinner.

The farm-to-table movement traces back decades to diners and restaurateurs who felt a common need to maintain and support locally-sourced, unprocessed foods. Similarly, the Goldie Floberg administration and board of directors felt a need to recognize our roots as well as the support the local community brings to our organization.

Each year, one dedicated donor attends the Winnebago County Fair, bids on a hog, and donates the hog and processing to fill the freezers of Goldie Floberg homes. This thoughtful gift supports local agriculture while creating opportunities for our staff and the people we serve to work together to create wholesome meals. Her annual donation helped us realize a need to bring this communal experience to the donors who, year after year, are making possible such simple, but meaningful experiences.

Farm to table dinner cocktails

Guest enjoy cocktails, tours, and learning each other’s connection to the mission.

On September 8, 40-plus valued donors, staff and directors gathered for the first annual Goldie Floberg Farm-to-Table Dinner. The evening began with cocktails and passed hors d’oeuvres, as well as tours and discussions of current services. Local group Screw City Swingers provided a gypsy jazz accompaniment throughout the cocktail hour and throughout dinner.

As guests were seated, CEO John Pingo, Ph.D., and Board President, John Smith, III, thanked guests and board members for attending and encouraged all to share stories of how they feel connected to the mission of Goldie. B. Floberg Center. And they did. Guests shared stories of family volunteers, childhood experiences of giving, and loved ones affected by special needs for support. The crisp September evening seemed to instantly warm as guests leaned in to share and understand each other’s stories.

Farm to Table Menu

Farm to table menu featuring local produce and desserts by Goldie’s Gourmet Goodies.

Dinner was crafted by the staff of Chef Paul Sletten, including whole roast pork (sponsored by Mrs. Meyer), and local and LEEP garden produce. The meal would not have been complete without treats from Goldie’s Gourmet Goodies (GGG). The GGG program director, Cori Delavan, and adult program staff presented a variety of desserts, including a whiskey bread pudding which brought rave reviews. Delavan also addressed the group with an overview of the GGG micro-business program which provides employment to adults who have been deemed unemployable within State definitions.

Note the “first annual” preceding the title of the Farm-to-Table Dinner. In our approach to celebrating our 2018, 100-year anniversary, this year’s event also served as a dress rehearsal. Goldie Floberg will be seeking planning committee members, local vendors, and event sponsors for the 100-year anniversary event.

We cannot thank enough the donors and sponsors who made the Farm-to-Table dinner possible:

Rockford Bank & Trust

RSM US Wealth Management

Lamonica Beverages

Mrs. Virginia Meyer

Zammuto Homestead