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March 2011 Newsletter 
It's been a busy winter for us here at Purple Asparagus. We've more than doubled the number of school programs and continue to develop innovative programs with our partners, like the Consortium to Lower Obesity in Chicago Children, Healthy Schools Campaign and Share Our Strength.
While we're all waiting for spring to come, we wanted to share with you some news and upcoming events.
Hope to see you soon!

The Purple Asparagus team 

Purple Asparagus in the Press

Good EatingWe're so proud to announce that our Founding Executive Director and Head Spear, Melissa Graham, received a 2011 Chicago Tribune Good Eating Award in recognition of her and Purple Asparagus' efforts in improving the health of Chicago children and families.


You may have also read about us last week in the Huffington Post , which reported on our work in the Chicago schools.


We're excited again to be running the Kids' Corner for Family Farmed Expo on Saturday March 19, 2011 at the UIC Forum.


There will lots of fun activities for parents and kids including arts and crafts, story time, a reading corner of books related to food, farming and nature, an explanation of label reading, and face painting where kids will proudly display their favorite fruit or vegetable on their cheek.

Tickets for the Expo are available online.


FOR FREE ADMISSION, VOLUNTEER FOR A 2-HOUR SHIFT IN OUR KIDS' CORNER.  For more information, email us at info@purpleasparagus.com.


Are you a kid 9-13 years old who dreams of becoming Chicago's next top chef?  Don't miss the Second Annual Healthy Kids Cookoff, a television-style cooking competition featuring celebrity chefs Celina Tio (Food Network's Next Iron Chef and Julian Restaurant, Kansas City) and Michael Kornick (DMK Burger Bar and mk the restaurant,) and exciting secret ingredients.  Two-member teams of kids ages 9-13 will be challenged to create a tasty, healthy and low-cost meal or snack with the help of Kendall College culinary students and Share Our Strength nutritionists in the Kendall College professional kitchens.   Parents and siblings will be able to watch all the action LIVE in the Kendall College Auditorium as camera crews capture all the action from the kitchen - just like on TV!  Will you emerge as the next culinary star? 

Prizes, snacks and a healthy living fair for parents and siblings featuring food and nutrition demonstrations and much more!





$40 per team member, or $80 per team of 2.  


Scholarships available: call 773.550.8570 for details. 

Proceeds benefit Share Our Strength's NO KID HUNGRY campaign to end childhood hunger in 2015. Take the pledge at www.nokidhungry.org

Chefs in the Classroom - April 5, 2011

 CMTSOn Chef in the Classroom Day 2011, chefs will bring cooking demonstrations, veggie tastings and healthy eating lessons to children at schools across Chicago. Through this effort, chefs are answering First Lady Michelle Obama's call to action for kids' health and forming meaningful connections with Chicago elementary schools.

School leaders have had great things to say about chefs' participation in this effort:

- "The children were electrified by the chef. It was a great class and exciting too."
- "The kids really understood why it's important to have vegetables as part of their meals."
- "The [best parts were] looks of curiosity, enthusiasm, and pride of our third graders as they learned, participated, and smiled through the entire demonstration."


You can make difference!  Please join us for Chef in the Classroom Day on April 5, 2011 and encourage your colleagues to consider participating as well.  To learn more or sign up, please visit www.GofortheGoldCPS.org/citc.

If you're a chef and would like to participate, contact Rosa Ramirez by email or at 312-419-1810. 


Earth Month at Green City Market

Mark Your Calendars for Green City Market's Club Sprouts Earth Month Celebration on


April 9th from 9am-12:00pm


Ongoing 9:00am-12:00pm Hands-on Gardening Activity - Plant your own seed in a newspaper pot and decorate an identification stake


Ongoing 9:00am-12:00pm  Tasting Table Featuring in-season products from Market vendors


Ongoing 9:00am-12:00pm Potato Stamps Create your own Potato Stamp with potatoes from the Market


10:00am-10:30am Hands-on Cooking Demo with Melissa Graham from Purple Asparagus.



Looking for A Few Good Spears
 As always, if you would like to volunteer with Purple Asparagus or would like to contribute your support for our important programming in other ways, please email us at info@purpleasparagus.com or call us at 773-991-1920.

In particular, we need volunteers for our much expanded school programs for this year.
 Thanks again for your continued support.
Purple Asparagus
Educating children, families and the community about eating that's good for the body and the planet. Bringing nutrious, delicious adventures to you!
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