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Vegan dinner raises $600 for the library

Sharing dinner became a positive community building experience and an adventure for 27 County residents who wanted to experience a ‘vegan’ meal.
Owners of The Painted Peppercorn, Renata and Zbig Lenc, donated the use of their restaurant for the evening, Christine Renaud prepared the vegan meal, the fresh picked arugula was donated by Vicki Emlaw of Vicki’s Veggies, and the chaffing dishes were on loan from Chef Michael Hoy.
“That’s what I love about the County,” says Renaud who created the fundraiser. “You can get an idea and people here are willing to help you make it happen.”
The fundraising dinner for 27 people sold out in a week.
“I was a bit surprised,” says Renaud, “because I thought that it being vegan might make it harder to sell, but I just sent out a few e-mails and word of mouth seemed to do the trick.”
Renaud has been vegetarian for close to 30 years and vegan the past four years. She held the dinner for two reasons.
“People often ask what I eat when they hear that I’m vegan, and I thought this would be a simple way to show people what vegans enjoy.
Plus, I love to share food that I make.”
The menu included as much local produce and products as possible, and featured sweet pea soup, arugula and mixed green salad with lime vinaigrette, a medley of roasted vegetables, brown basmati rice with mini bella mushrooms and sundried tomatoes, tofu with thyme cashew cream and classic chocolate cake and a mixed berry crumble for dessert.
“The second reason that I wanted to hold this dinner was to do raise money for the library, which I think is an invaluable community resource and, like all public libraries, requires funds to purchase books and offer programs for children, adults and seniors.”
The Harper government recently decided to eliminate federal funding of the Community Access Program (CAP), which provides high speed Internet access to many rural areas, and this is but one example, contends Renaud, of the current pressure on public libraries.
“If we’re going to continue to offer the level of service the community has come to expect from its public library, and that it
deserves, the money has to come from somewhere and sharing a meal is always a positive community building experience.”

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