Celebrating the Dandelion

Pictured Above: Jess Morris of the North Fork Roasting Company with her fresh baked dandelion donuts at last year’s Dandelion Festival.

KK’s The Farm at 59945 Main Road in Southold is holding its fourth annual Dandelion Festival, rain or shine, on Sunday, May 5, as part of a mission to raise awareness of the benefits of the dandelion, and the culinary benefits of its leaf, flower and root. Dandelion is a symbol of spring and provides early food for the bees and other pollinators.

The festival is also an attempt to get people to think twice before spraying herbicides that both kill dandelions and enter our soil, aquifer, estuaries and bay.

This year’s festival, to be held from noon to 6 p.m., includes talks on innovative farming methods, poetry and music, local food and booths run by local farmers and beekeepers, nature organizations and natural health practitioners. 

The festivities kick off with a welcome from KK’s owner Ira Haspel, followed by poetry and a tutorial on soil health by Thomas Stock at 12:30 p.m.

Jennifer Keller will discuss “How Regenerative Agriculture Can Help Reverse Climate Change” at 1 p.m. and Sarah Shepherd of The Island Herbalist will discuss “Dandelion as Food and Medicine” at 1:35 p.m. Vivian Eyre will read a poem at 1:55 p.m.

Stephen Storch of Natural Science Organics will discuss “Sub-Nature, Nature and Supra-Nature: Elemental Beings, Man and the Angelic Realm” at 2 p.m.

Jim Macdougall of the Evelyn Alexander Wildlife Rescue Center will talk at 3 p.m. Leigh Merinoff of Meadow Bee Farms will talk about “Farm School” at 3:35 p.m.

Snail farmer and forager Taylor Knapp will discuss foraging at 4:20 p.m. and Suzanne Ruggles of the Barefoot Gardener speaks at 4:50 p.m.

There will be activities and workshops for families throughout the day, including face painting, dandelion crown making and a walk through the farm’s labyrinth at noon, a presentation on Qui Gong by Anna Kozlowska at 12:30 p.m., flower essence making with Sarah Shepherd at 1 p.m., peaceful breathing exercises and workshops for kids on biodynamics and the structure and function of the dandelion seed at 1:30 p.m., hula hoop lessons with Diane Gunther at 2 p.m., and a farm tour with Ira Haspel and Sonomi Obinata at 3:30 p.m.

Musicians Liza Coppola will perform from 12:30 to 2 p.m., Donald Garside, Joel Usher and Tom Fisher will perform from 2 to 3 p.m., Points East will perform from 3 to 4:30 p.m., Donald Garside will perform from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. 

Shane Weeks from the Shinnecock Nation, Sonomi Obinata and Sarah Shepherd and Co. Drumming will lead the closing ceremony at 6 p.m. 

Organizers are asking attendees to please park on Bay Home Road, across the Main Road from the farm, not on the Main Road.

Beth Young

Beth Young has been covering the East End since the 1990s. In her spare time, she runs around the block, tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at editor@eastendbeacon.com

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