On Saturday evening, I had the pleasure of attending a new event called MEAET 0.5, which was organized by members of Edmonton’s Next Gen. It was a truly delightful experience meeting other young engaged, civic-minded, socially conscious individuals. These individuals created this event to bring people together with the goal of putting their money behind an idea they vote on – putting our money where our mouth is. Attendees mingled and enjoyed great food, then listened to the pitches from 4 participants, of which I was one, then dined together, then each participant decided which pitch to give their vote to. At the end of the evening, the winner was announced and I was pleasantly surprised to win!
What was my pitch or idea? A Pedal Powered Generator Apple Cider Project. Yes, locally-made, carbon-neutral cider. A truly local and sustainable product! OFRE rescues fruit from private residences in the city of Edmonton and surrounding areas and shares the bounty of the fruits collected with pickers, owners, and charities. Some of that fruit collected (approx 1/4 of fruits picked) stays with OFRE for events such as canning workshops, and cider production. OFRE acquired a small barrel press and apple crusher this year through a generous grant from our partner organization: EOGG.
OFRE will be using the grant money awarded to register interested OFRE members in a workshop given by the Edmonton Bicycle Commuters on how to build a pedal powered generator, as well as to purchase the parts we will need to make this happen. Having a pedal powered generator would enable us to go through a higher volume of apples in a shorter amount of time, it makes it fun, and engages citizens of all ages in a old tradition in a new way.
OFRE plans to document the process of building a pedal powered generator with photos, blog posts, and a video of us crushing apples and making cider. We aim to bring some pedal powered cider to the next MEAET 0.5 event for the members to enjoy! OFRe strives to connect people and build community through food. We are really excited about this opportunity to collaborate with EBC and make something our volunteers will enjoy for years to come.