Tonight I attended the "All about Slow Food" lecture given by Marlene Parrish at the Carnegie Library. Slow Food (founded in Italy in the 1980s in response to a McDonald's opening in Rome) has many many-syllabled tenets. http://www.slowfoodpgh.com/ Their website is kind of short on content, but it has some useful information.
A quote from their website:
"Slow Food is an international educational organization dedicated to the revival of the kitchen and the table as centers of pleasure, culture, and community; to the invigoration and proliferation of regional, seasonal culinary traditions; to the stewardship of the land and ecologically sound food production; and to leading a slower and more harmonious life. Slow Food Pittsburgh has close to 200 members and is growing. "
I will be joining shortly. Membership will cost $60 annually. They host many events and try to be a center and clearinghouse for eating locally in Pittsburgh. They also run programs in schools and send farmers and local chefs to Italy for the bienniel meeting. The Pittsburgh chapter looks to be a major player within this very important organization. It is one of the top ten in the country alongside such cities as San Francisco and Los Angeles. Here is an article about Pittsburgh's involvement within the larger chapter. http://www.slowfoodusa.org/press/pilgrimage.html
And just in case you're making plans for May, Slow Food USA will hold its first ever national promotion of American Food. It will be in San Francisco May 1-4th and will be anchored by Michael Pollen (author of Omnivore's Dilemma) and Alice Waters.