Portland Woman To Live On Wild Food Foraged In Portland For Thanksgiving Week
From Friday Nov. 20 through Thanksgiving dinner on Nov. 26, urban forager Rebecca Lerner will attempt to survive exclusively on wild food she gathers from sidewalks, parks, wilderness areas and yards in the city of Portland, OR. There will be no Dumpster diving, mooching from gardens or picking from cultivated fruit trees. In an effort to highlight wild food, Lerner's unusual menu will include thistle, sumac, dandelion and other weeds; fat she gathered from a roadkill deer; the root vegetable wapato; acorns, chestnuts, hazelnuts and black walnuts harvested from city trees; mushrooms; stinging nettles; hawthorn berries; yellow dock seeds; cleavers, and more.
"Foraging is a fun and free way to get healthy local food," Lerner said. "It's also a survival skill that can come in handy in an emergency, and a way to get in touch with our roots as hunter-gatherers."
Lerner will blog daily about her adventures for the nonprofit web magazine CultureChange.org during the project, updating readers with photos, video and writings about the foods she finds, how she prepares them, how she is feeling (satisfied? starved? desperate for brownies?) and what the experience changes her life.
Lerner is a 27-year-old freelance journalist living in northeast Portland who writes about wild food, wilderness survival and primitive skills on her blog, www.FirstWays.com.
As reported by the Boston Globe, ABC News, KBOO Community Radio, The Oregonian, Utne Reader and other media outlets, Lerner attempted a similar challenge in May. Her first attempt only lasted five days, with Lerner cutting the project short after struggling to find enough food -- but not before munching on ant eggs. This time, bolstered by the abundance of the harvest season and the lessons she learned about survival, Lerner is determined to make it the whole way through, even planning a wild-food Thanksgiving dinner with forager friends.
CultureChange.org is a nonprofit web magazine published by Jan Lundberg that explores issues of post-oil sustainability. Lundberg is a California native and former oil-industry analyst who founded the Sail Transport Network.
For background on the May experiment, please visit www.FirstWays.com/About
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