Summer Solstice on Turkey Mountain – The Pictures.

I am zonked. Elated, but zonked.

The Summer Solstice Farm Dinner worked beyond our expectations.

There is absolutely something magical that happen when you gather people around a long table (or in this case 3 long tables of 50 people each), in the fieldd, in a gorgeous farm and natural setting with local seasonal food prepared by an extraordinary chef, served efficiently and smoothly and paired with local wine – ah le gout du terroir. And the music… did I mentioned the music? Gourdvine String Band performed lively Appalachian and Celtic music throughout the evening which fitted the setting and the mood of the event perfectly with fiddle, hammered dulcimer and banjo. Times like that really bring home why I chose to be a Virginian.

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ssolstice-2009-armstrong-by-allison-morgan

It was fascinating to watch the interactions of strangers meeting another for the first time. Groups forming and breaking, and re-forming with different people; conversation flowing, introductions being made… during the cocktail hour. Everybody sat where they wanted at dinner, but still people were moving around, enjoying the view, the food, the wine and one another. That’s to me is the magic part of the evening – that and the fireflies!

ssolstice-2009-guest-by-allison-morgan

ssolstice-2009-tent-on-the-hill-by-allison-morgan

Early on that day while I was checking people in, so they could either walk up the long country driveway or get on a little shuttle to take them up to the old farm house on the hill, I ditched my camera. I would be too busy to take pictures, and with my little point & shoot (which I was liable to loose), I was unlikely to take any memorable pictures. And since there were plenty of photographers there, I knew I ought to be able to put my hands on good pictures – ones that would be evocative of the evening, capturing its essence – as much as you can capture that in a photo, that is. so here they are – none of the pictures in this post are mine.

From Ray Boc, Sperryville, VA came those fabulous photos (except the last 4 which are Allison Morgan’s). Ray may be contacted through the House On Water Street if you are interested in any of his pictures – he has many more.

Allison Morgan, a guest at the dinner, took some really gorgeous shots. The 4 large ones above actually (and then the same ones, smaller this time in the gallery above – I don’t want them in the gallery… sigh… but they keep showing up there – one day I’ll get this picture thing mastered… ahahah). Anyway, can you tell that Allison specializes in wedding photography? For more pictures and her description of the event, please check Allison’s blog posts here, or go to her uploaded Summer Solstice Farm Dinner photo gallery, where you can order prints. Evn if you don’t want to order print, take a look at her site for the fabulous pictures.

So the planning committee will meet again for debriefing and lesson learned and start the foundation of next year’s event.

Meanwhile, after this rub with celebrities, I’ll go back to my garden and to my kitchen. Weeds to pull (I think I need a machete), jam to make, blueberries to freeze, elder blossom syrup to make (I better hurry up to make some more before the flowers turn to berries)… in a word: summer….

Updates:

  • 6/21: John Hagarty reports on his blog Hagarty on Wine
  • 6/23: Washington Post write up here.
  • 6/24: Ragged Mountain Voice (Steve Dareing) also has some great pictures. The portrait pictures are particularly good. Check out his post “Culinary Height” on Ragged Mountain Voice Blog (there is also a link to go to the on-line gallery where prints can be purchased)
  • 6/25: Rappahannock News reports on the event.

Two pictures from Steve, below:

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ssolstice-2009-kitchen-crew-by-steve-dareing1



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