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Seeds of Change: Incarcerated Women and Youth; Adult Ex-Offenders Find Purpose in Gardening

This panel discussion was well received, with lots of questions from the audience. November 9, 2018.

Wasted: The Story of Food Waste

This movie taught us all a lot about how much waste there is in the world, some of it in our own homes. Fall of 2018.

Mardi Gras Mystery Auction Dinner

A fun group of costumed folks enjoyed this whodonit dinner on July 27, 2018.

Plant-Powered Family Potluck

Many folks joined us for our Vegan Potluck Saturday, April 7, 2018 in the Fahs Chapel.

Theme for April 2018: Super Foods!

We had a terrific tasting table on Sunday the 8th, featuring such super foods as broccoli, blueberries, strawberries, kale, sweet potatoes, and more. What are Super Foods? Not really a scientific label, but one of popular culture. But most agree that certain foods have much going for them in terms of health benefits. See what the American Heart Association has to say about SuperFoods.

Theme for March 2018: Eat for Your Health

We previewed some cookbooks featuring beautiful, tasty, and healthy foods, as well as plenty  more information on eating too stay healthy. We had a tasting table featuring some gluten-free, some nut-free, some vegan recipes.

All were delicious! Check them out: Recipes

Theme for February 2018: Try Something New

We had two tasting tables in February:

On the 4th we featured new items for BREAKFAST, such as Chickpea flour mini Veggie Fritattas, Farro, No-Bake Sunflower Bars and Vegan Sweet Potato Muffins.

On the 18th we featured new or unusual VEGETABLES: Rutabagas, Sweet Potato and Leek Soup, Roasted Kabocha Squash, Romanesco and Chickpea Curry.

All were delicious! Check them out: Recipes

Theme for January 2018: Meatless Mondays

The Mindful Eating Team is helping out with resources for how you might begin 2018 practicing Meatless Mondays (or more!).
Here ya go:

Theme for December 2017: Buying Local

The Environmental Benefits of Buying Locally:  We focused on the many reasons to purchase local food and goods. Some of the most important aspects have to do with the environmental impact.

  1. Reduces your food miles: Many foods and products sold in major grocery chains travel up to 1,500 miles before landing on the store’s shelf, and eventually in your pantry.
  2. Food is more accessible: Consumers have easy access to local businesses and farmers markets, without having to drive to remote big box grocery stores.
  3. Provides for fresher produce: Food arrives on the table sooner, staying fresher. This means less food waste.
  4. Protects local land and wildlife: Supporting locally grown food helps keep land for farming, and out of the hands of developers.
  5. Supports the local workforce: Without consumer demand for local food, farmers and other food workers might have to seek employment elsewhere, outside of the community. Highway congestion and fuel consumption would increase, resulting in a larger carbon footprint.

How can you buy local foods in the winter in Washtenaw County? We're here to help with lists of Washtenaw County Farmers Markets Open in Winter and Washtenaw County Stores Offering Local Foods.

SNAP Panel Discussion

Thanks to our great panel of experts on SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) for a very informative discussion: Billy Kangas, owner of Cultivate Coffee and Tap House, Ypsilanti; Markell Miller, Director of Community Food Programs, Food Gatherers; Lauren Velez, Family and Youth Services Team Leader, Ozone; and Krista Nordberg, Director of Enrollment at Washtenaw Health Plan. We learned that every $1 given to a SNAP recipient generates $1.80 in the community. We also found out that the eligibility requirements are quite stringent, and the error rate is low. $3 million in SNAP funds is distributed in Washtenaw County every month - it's vital to our community.

Fall Harvest Potluck

On October 20th, 2017, we shared the bounty of locally-grown foods.

Stephanie Willette, Ann Arbor Farmers Market Manager, spoke to us about changes coming to the Market, as well as other important issues, such as SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) and how it affects people in our area.

We also recognized Farmer Bill Schmid and the Food Gatherers Farm Project volunteers.

The Lives of Farm Workers in Michigan and the U.S.

Sunday, Feb. 5. 2017, 1:00 pm

Ever wonder what the lives of farm workers, including migrants, are like in Michigan? In the U.S.? Mental illness, migrant status, wage violations, working conditions, housing, and sexual harassment are some of the issues were addressed by Kim Daley of the Ann Arbor Solidarity with Farmworkers Collective, an Eastern Michigan student from a Sociology of Work class, and a Florida farmworker.

UUAA Auction Chocolate Dinner

September 30, 2017, the Mindful Eating Team hosted Chocolate Dinner at the home of Merrill Crocket. We served ten folks who had been the high-bidders at the UUAA Auction last spring. We also had two guests: Farmer Bill Schmid and Nancy Biehn. Nancy is owner of Sweet Gems Confections in Ann Arbor, and she spoke to the group about the history of chocolate and how it is produced, as well as her personal journey through the chocolate world.

Meet Your Farmer: Dyer Family Organic Farm

January 15, 2017, Dick Dyer talked to a nice crowd about how the Dyer Family Organic Farm (aka Dick's 'Pretty Good!' Garlic) was started by Dick and Diana Dyer in 2009. He discussed the different varieties of garlic they grow, how being organic is so important, and about their bee hives and the honey they sell.

See their website:

Just Eat It: A food waste story: North American households waste 15-20% of all the food they buy. A crowd watched this movie follow a couple from Vancouver who take a six-month challenge to survive only on discarded food.

This great event was co-sponsored by: Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism (RAC), Temple Beth Emeth (TBE), Interfaith Council for Peac and Justice (ICPJ), 1st Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Ann Arbor - Mindful Eating Team.

Food Chains Movie and Immokalee Farmworker visit: October 9, 2016

CROP Walk: September 25, 2016

An Evening with Will Tuttle: September 13, 2016

Fall Harvest Potluck: October 21, 2016

Plant-Powered Family Potluck: October 8, 2016

Food Chains Movie and talk with Migrant Workers: October 9, 2016

Meet Your Farmer: Bill Schmid: April 17, 2016

Meet Your Farmer: White Lotus Farms: Feb. 28, 2016

Meet Your Farmer: Goetz Family Farm: Feb. 21, 2016

Food Waste Challenge: 4 weeks, Feb. - March 2016

Fuels and Additives for Human Machines: Dr. Swaroop Bhojani: Sept. 27, 2015

UUAA Garden Tour: June 14, 2015

We have participated in ICPJ's year-long investigation on food justice

VegUUAA hosted Vegan Family Potlucks every-other month

Meet Your Farmers Series: Community Farm of Ann Arbor: Feb. 22, 2015

Meet Your Farmers Series: Frog Holler Farm: Jan. 11, 2015

150th Anniversary Harvest Potluck: Recipes Through the Ages: October 26, 2014

Panel Discussion: Genetically Modified (GM) Foods: Saving the World, Endangering It, 
or Somewhere In Between? March 23, 2014 (take a look at the summary)

Meet Your Farmers series: Deb Lentz and Richard Andres of Tantre Farm, February 16, 2014

Veg UUAA hosts Vegan Family Potluck, February 15, 2014

Meet Your Farmers series: Alex Cacciari and Mark Nowak of Seeley Farm, February 2, 2014

Meet Your Farmers series: Jennifer Kangas of Capella Farm, January 12, 2014

Veg UUAA hosts Vegan Family Potluck, December 7, 2013

Meet Your Farmers series: Dan Zatkovich of Zatkovich Pastures, November 10, 2013

Feeding a Hungry Planet: Crisis and Opportunity. Prof. Catherine Badgley, Oct. 27, 2013

Fall Harvest Potluck, October 16, 2013

UUAA Garden Tour, Aug. 25, 2013

Behind the Kitchen Door Panel Discussion, April 28, 2013

Discussion with UUAA 7th Graders, April 14, 2013

Behind the Kitchen Door presentation by Restaurant Opportunities Center, Detroit, member Michaela Garalski; April 7, 2013

Vegan Potluck, April 6, 2013

Selma Cafe Breakfast, March 29, 2013

Food Gatherers Farm Project, headed by Colleen Crawley, received a Beacon of Light award at Michigan Harvest Gathering in Lansing Nov. 19, 2012.

CROP Walk: Oct. 14, 2012

Harvest Potluck Dinner: Oct. 13, 2012

Food Gatherers Tour, Oct. 6, 2012

Ninety-three UUAAs took the Healthy Eating Challenge from early October to mid-November, 2012. We learned a lot about how to be more mindful of our eating every day. Take a look at the challenge.


Klein Lecture: Dr. Oran Hesterman spoke on "Growing a Fair Food System Through Mindful Eating & Civic Engagement"

This great event took place on September 24th. Dr. Hesterman presented an inspiring discussion on how to change not only what we eat, but how our food is grown, packaged, delivered, and sold. He put forth his vision on redesigning the entire food system so that it is healthy for our families, healthy for our environment, and healthy for communities.


July Photos at Farmer Bill's

See the pictures.

Work Day at Farmer Bill's - 5/27/12

A great crew worked hard but had a good time, and got a lot of planting and weeding done. See the pictures!


Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows: Presentation by Dr. Melanie Joy

A large audience attended this riveting presentation by author and social psychologist Dr. Melanie Joy (April 15, 2012). She explained carnism, the invisible belief system that shapes our perception of the meat we eat. Dr. Joy believes that by illuminating how we choose our foods, often unconsciously, we become more empowered citizens and more active social witnesses.

There was an animated question and answer session following the lecture. The reception that followed included many delicious vegan foods. Thanks so much to our volunteers!



Forks Over Knives, Truly A Movie That Can Save Your Life:

Our first major event of 2012 (January 15) was a huge success, with over 80 people packing the Fahs Chapel for Sunday’s showing of this seminal film. Our audience included people afflicted with cancer, diabetes and obesity, as well as those with a general interest in the subject. Working on the premise that many degenerative diseases can be controlled or even reversed by rejecting animal-based and processed foods, the movie provided substantial evidence to back this claim. Patients followed throughout the film, fighting significant illnesses, had their symptoms halt and even retreat from switching to a vegan diet. Most noteworthy for many of us was how quickly the subjects saw results, as well as their ability to abandon the multiple pills and prescribed medications that were previously an integral part of their life. So much evidence was presented to support the benefits of a vegetarian lifestyle that it left many of us in awe. This movie truly had an impact on the audience.


The question frequently repeated following the presentation was “How do I get started?” For those unfamiliar with a vegetarian or vegan diet, those first steps can seem overwhelming. A book that comes highly recommended is 21 Day Weight Loss Kickstart by Neal D. Barnard, MD, which includes recipes, as does the Vegetarian Starter Kit put out by the Physicans Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) Another good resource can be found at , the Guide to Meat-Free Meals, from the Humane Society. The Mindful Eating table in the UUAA Social Hall on Sunday mornings also has free material that can be useful in getting started.


Our hosts for Forks Over Knives, Donna and Hal Estry, went out of their way to make this a special event. Providing an array of vegan snacks, book displays and literature and handouts for participants to take home, they also did all of the publicity and coordinated volunteers. In delivering opening and closing remarks, offering useful information on vegatarian organizations and answering questions from the audience, these two vegans projected energy and a zest for life, complimenting the film’s topic. Many thanks to Hal and Donna for their efforts in presenting Fork Over Knives.