Food Shed Co-op wins Picnic in the Park contest

Contest participants were judged based on creativity, best use of their theme

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The Food Shed Co-op participated in the third annual “Picnic in the Park” contest Wednesday at Woodstock’s Summer in the Park event and won the first-place prize for its original picnic setting theme: “The Locally-Sourced Picnic: Perfect Picnics [love] Local Fare.”

Contest participants were judged based on creativity and the best use of their theme.

Because the Food Shed Co-op will be a grocery store that carries as much locally sourced products as possible when it opens, it created its picnic setting with food supplied by local farms and food artisans, including Brook Farm Popcorn, Conscious Cup Coffee Roasters, Ethereal Confections, Expressly Leslie’s Vegetarian Specialties, Loyola’s Retreat & Ecology Campus, Mentoring Gardens, Read Between the Lynes, Rosie’s Gluten-Free Sweets, Scorched Earth Brewing Company, Silver Prairie Natural Soap Company, Sunshine Preserves, The Peacock Shoppe and W&M Land Corp Organic Nursery.

Picnic guests enjoyed eating and drinking the local food and beverages while listening to the Woodstock City Band play in the historic Woodstock Square’s gazebo.

The Food Shed Co-op’s first-place prize consisted of a Sustainable Woodstock shopping bag that included two tickets to one performance at the Woodstock Opera House on behalf of the Woodstock Musical Theatre Company and Townsquare Players, a free game of mini-golf at Woodstock Golf and Games, one free admission to the Woodstock Water Works in Emricson Park, gift cards to Ethereal Confections and Classic Cinemas and trinkets from Fox Valley Fire and Safety.

The ​Food Shed Co-op​ is a community-owned grocery store in the start-up/growth stages of development whose mission is to build a local food cooperative that promotes a healthy, ethical and resilient community. The Food Shed won a USDA grant in 2014 that was used to fund a market-feasibility study that suggested locating its site between Crystal Lake and Woodstock, and currently are negotiating for a site in that target area.

The Food Shed continues to grow its community, welcoming ​new owner​-investors while hosting many engaging and fun ​events​. The Food Shed is available to give educational presentations for local groups and organizations.