2016 Annual Benefit Highlights

Friday, May 20, 2016 was the day before the opening of the Oak Park Farmers Market. And the eve of the Farmers’ Market has become the night of the annual Shawnash open house. This annual event celebrates making healthy vegetables and fruits available to all.

A highlight of our event is the tasting of fine Oregon wines from the Willamette Valley, provided through the generosity of Lisa Taaffe, Mid-West Region Manger of the Union Wine Company.Lisa and Mark

Several churches in the area have come up with creative ways to support the program with donations. Anne White of Unity Temple told about church members holding a regular ‘farmers’ market’ to sell local produce after the Sunday service and donating  the proceeds to Shawnash to support the Double Value Coupon Program. She presented a $300 check from the first sale.

Anne is describing the DVCP fund raising efforts of Unity Temple.
Anne is describing the DVCP fund raising efforts of Unity Temple.

Notable among the new faces at our benefit was Oak Park State Senator Don Harmon. Senator Harmon noted that he seldom is able to attend a celebration of legislation he is sponsoring, but that is essentially the case for HB6027, HEALTHY LOCAL FOOD INCENTIVES Act. If passed, this legislation would enable a state agency to pool state and federal funds for the purpose of providing matching IMG_0557dollar incentives (up to a specified amount) for the dollar value of SNAP (LINK Card) benefits spent on fruits and vegetables at participating Illinois farmers markets and producer-to-consumer venues. Senator Harmon’s remarks were well received.

Below are photos from this year’s benefit. Again this year, everyone had a great time for a great cause.

Friends of ShawnashIMG_0560


IMG_0584Jim Babcock, Ceal Bacom and Eileen Lynch

Kregg Raducha and Dan Owens


























Senator Harmon and Shawnash friends


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