Volunteer and Join the Apple Core
Volunteering with Slow Food Russian River gives you an opportunity to meet and work with the movers and shakers of the food movement in the North Bay Area: farmers and ranchers, chefs and bakers, winemakers and mushroom growers, cider makers and strawberry farmers.
And you meet people like yourself, who are passionate about taste, healthy eating, and fair labor practices. Nobody needs to go hungry in our blessed place on Earth.
We want to give back to our communities and bring joy and justice to the local food movement. As a worldwide organization, Slow Food connects the local with the global and Slow Food Russian River is proud to be a part of this network.
The Apple Core
The Apple Core is the group within Slow Food Russian River that supports the work of the Gravenstein Presidium and its Save the Gravenstein Campaign. You do not need to be an official member of Slow Food to join the Apple Core, although we hope that with time (and fun!) you will become one.
The Apple Core creatively builds demand for all local apples and apple products in order to: save the Gravenstein apple, support Sonoma County apple farmers, support diversified agriculture,strengthen community, and celebrate our local apple heritage.
Volunteering within the Apple Core can take many forms, from tinkering with our equipment – foremost our beloved apple press from Correll Cider Press – to providing information to the public about our local apple culture; from helping children press and taste apple juice to keeping track of reservations and sign-ups; from applying for grants and other forms of fundraising to taking photos and videos, and writing blog posts and news bulletins. To volunteer, complete and submit the information requested on the right side of this page.
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Volunteering at Farmers Markets and Fairs
Volunteering at Farmers Markets and Fairs is all about giving the gift of taste experiences to visitors.
People are blown away by the taste of freshly pressed apple juice that was pressed just minutes before from local apples.
Learning more about these apples also deepens their experience, so you can talk about any aspect of our apple culture that personally touches you – from cooking with apples to cider making to planting your own orchard. You can give information about local apples and farmers, sell a t-shirt or apron, or take photos for visitors so they have a memento of this memorable taste experience.
You will be helping out at one or more of the following: the Sebastopol Farmers’ Market, the Santa Rosa Original Certified Farmers Market, or the National Heirloom Exposition in Santa Rosa. Minimum time commitment is four hours.
Volunteering at the Community Apple Press
At the Sebastopol Community Apple Press, Slow Food volunteers create a safe and fun environment where people can press their own apples and sample their juice at the source and bottle it to take home. Some people bring apples from their own backyard trees, while others buy apples from one of our local apple growers. You can help them deepen their experience by initiating conversations about our apple culture, the history of the Gravenstein Apple, Slow Food’s Ark of Taste, and the international Slow Food movement in general.
The Community Apple Press is open on weekends from August till October. For dates and times of available volunteer shifts, see the list in the right column below the signup form. The current volunteer schedule for the Apple Press can be viewed here. Users of the press can check for availability and reserve online.
Volunteering with School Groups
This is a very special volunteer opportunity since you interact with school children many of whom have never visited a farm or worked together to create an edible product. You work closely with their teachers and other adults who accompany the children. Again fun and safety are central to the environment you create. And working with children creates special teaching opportunities as they will have thousands of questions!
School Groups visit the Community Apple Press, by arrangement, weekdays during school hours.