Connecticut College News
Fiddleheads Celebrates One Year - By Samantha Herndon ´1002/11/2009
Throngs of shoppers and partygoers joined forces last Saturday in a quest for delicious organic food and New London revelry. On January 31, Fiddleheads Natural Foods Cooperative held its First Annual Anniversary Celebration, and the spacious brick building in downtown New London was filled to the brim. Free samples of carrot cake, spices, herbs, freshly baked potato chips, sprouts and other natural, local goods lined the walls. Gleeful attendees in need of groceries queued up at the new tills to receive their ten percent discounts. The day included live music from Richard Zack, Bob Westhover, Pat Carnaroli, Kenny Atkins and the Honky Tonk Band. Connecticut´s Second District Congressman Joe Courtney also attended the bash. A number of Connecticut College students made it to Fiddleheads on Saturday and had naught but glowing remarks about the day. Celia Whitehead ´11 biked to the anniversary party to pick up some groceries and join in the fun. "It was packed," said Whitehead. "It was great to see so many people out supporting Fiddleheads; great to see them supporting local artisans." She noted that people of all ages were at the Co-op, including Connecticut College faculty and staff. Attendance may have been bolstered by the clear and pleasant weather. Fiddleheads´ opening one year ago was hard-fought, and the festivities reflected the hard work that has gone into keeping the Cooperative up and running. The selection available continues to grow, and bulk items like flour, beans and lentils now share floor space with fresh produce like broccoli, carrots, grape tomatoes, green peppers, onions, cilantro and collard greens. A wide variety of vendors, selling non-food items from homemade soaps to alpaca yarn, and from fragrant organic plants to chemical-free cleaning products, were also present last Saturday. "I was very pleased, even more than pleased with the turnout for the Anniversary Celebration," said Allen Longendyke, part of the Fiddleheads Co-op Board of Directors. When asked what his favorite part of the day was, Longendyke responded, "Ken Atkins and the Honky Tonk Way playing, but that is because I like them and alt-country." Whitehead also noted that she greatly enjoyed the musical musings of singer-songwriter Carnaroli. Live music is a regular part of the Fiddleheads food shopping experience, and Whitehead herself has performed in the space, along with other talented Connecticut College musicians. In addition to bringing the community together, the Fiddleheads´ mission statement, according to the Cooperative´s website, includes being dedicated "to providing wholesome, natural foods, organic and locally fresh produce, emphasizing products that are cruelty-free, developed through fair trade and with a commitment to preserving our environment." The Anniversary event showed that for the past year, Fiddleheads has been doing just that.