Conscious party: Organic Growers School plans a four-course comedy dinner

COURSES FOR A CAUSE: Bill Whipple's uppity French persona Pierre Geaux, left, will host a four-course dinner curated by Meredith Leigh, right, with all proceeds benefiting Organic Growers School. Guests can attend the fundraiser without participating in the nonprofit's larger conference. Photos courtesy of Organic Growers School

WHAT: A humorous farm-to-table fundraiser for Organic Growers School

WHERE: UNC Asheville’s Brown Hall

WHEN: Saturday, March 12, at 5:30 p.m.

WHY: Organic Growers School’s 23rd annual spring conference will, for the first time, include a farm-to-table dinner component. And French food snob Pierre Geaux (an alter ego of local homesteading authority Bill Whipple) is hosting the event, if only to mount a soapbox in support of his passion: the terroir of local foods.

“He will be in full character doing a comical skit, but also tying in this idea of how Organic Growers School really works to create the local movement for organic food and organic culture,” says conference coordinator Sabrina Wells, noting that these activities also boost the regional economy.

Geaux’s theatrics, which include musical skits with a group of volunteers and “a few surprises,” according to Wells, will begin during a pre-dinner reception featuring local refreshments like pickles, charcuterie, cider and wine. Then, attendees will see what the delightfully arrogant French foodie thinks of three more courses envisioned by menu curator Meredith Leigh, a local author, former Organic Growers School executive director and current education and outreach coordinator for Living Web Farms.

Her selections include a curly cress, arugula and red mizuna salad with shaved fennel, tart cherries and pork cracklins, sourced predominantly through Living Web Farms; Hickory Nut Gap Farm’s beef short rib plus oxtail and pan jus (or a vegan option of chorizo-style seitan with mushrooms) with root vegetable hash and bamboo shoots au gratin; and for dessert, pistachio-crusted poached apple with goat cheese, honey and violet.

All proceeds benefit Organic Growers School in its mission to “inspire, educate and support people to farm, garden and live organically.”

Visit for more information or to secure tickets, which are available on a sliding scale from $75-$125 per person. 


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

About Kat McReynolds
Kat studied entrepreneurship and music business at the University of Miami and earned her MBA at Appalachian State University. Follow me @katmAVL

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.