NIC in the News: Community connects over On the Table potluck

Local food was the topic of an ‘On the Table potluck’ hosted by the Mount Waddington Community Food Initiative and North Island College.

The Mount Waddington Community Food Initiative and North Island College held an ‘On the Table’ potluck to connect and talk about local foods. 

On the Table is a province-wide initiative of the Vancouver Foundation that allows events to be hosted by individuals and organizations across BC that brings people together and encourages community connection.

The topics people discuss at the events will be collected and shared, and give a snapshot of what is on people’s minds throughout BC.

“Tammas Grogan sent us the idea of doing a session here and we worked with Leslie Dyck (coordinator) of the Mount Waddington Community Food Initiative to put it on,” NIC Campus Coordinator Caitlin Hartnett said. (Grogan recently moved to Port Hardy where she is designing an urban farm.)

“We decided to host a potluck and asked guests to bring a green and a fish/seafood,” Hartnett said.

While they ate, groups discussed what local food they liked to share and how they thought local food knowledge should be, or could be, shared.

Attendees were also invited to choose from the Pacific Northwest Plant Knowledge Cards and share a story or memory of the plant.

Knowledge Cards highlight 65 edible and medicinal plants from the Pacific Northwest coastal region.

The cards were inspired by Feasting for Change: Re-connecting Food, Land & Culture where Elders and Knowledge Keepers led plant walks and discussions about edible and medicinal plants.

Each card describes traditional uses and ways of harvesting each plant, featuring seasonal indicators and a legend to help quickly identify uses of each plant.

“It was a great evening of discussion and tasting great local fish and greens. We are hopeful this will be one of many potlucks with discussion on this topic in the region,” said Hartnett.

If community members from across the region are interested in hosting a similar themed potluck, contact: Leslie Dyck at

- Kathy O'Reilly, North Island Eagle

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