A great big thank you to the Armstrong-Spallumcheen Chamber of Commerce and organizers of the first Cheese: 100 Years in the Making Festival held Nov. 2 at the Odd Fellows Hall.
Thank you for coming up with such a great idea as a 100th anniversary celebration for Armstrong.
If numbers are any indication, this event exposed unimagined support for our local cheeses.
People showed up in droves from the time the doors opened.
And thanks also to The Morning Star for the story they did, which no doubt increased attendance significantly.
The historical pictures decorating the hall showed the past 100 years of dairy farming and cheese making in and around Armstrong.
The region is rich in dairy history.
Today, the North Okanagan is a draw for talented cheese-makers to come and live, and produce artisan cheeses.
Events like the cheese festival offer critical support for new producers to reach consumers and grow their business.
Local farm cheeses help put places like Salt Spring Island, the Cowichan Valley and the Comox Valley on the map.
All of these areas have developed into local, artisan food meccas.
There is no reason our beautiful region of the North Okanagan can’t do the same.
If the overwhelming attendance for Armstrong’s first cheese festival is any indication, our next 100 years could be good indeed for our local farmers and food producers.
I can’t wait for the second annual, and no doubt greatly expanded, cheese festival.