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4. Visit the Family Pavilion 

Free hands-on activities like cooking, gardening and art for kids are on tap in the Family Pavilion on Saturday and Sunday. From making pollinator seed bombs to chopping up salsa, kids will learn about food from farm to fork, walk away inspired to make good food choices, and gain understanding about how these choices impact the world around them.

5. Attend engaging talks by experts

Festival summits explore tradition, innovation and current issues related to Slow Food on Saturday and Sunday and are being held at University of Colorado Denver’s College of Architecture and Planning. Summits begin with a one-hour talk followed by a 30-minute social gathering over small bites and/or beverages that relate to the talk. 

Don’t miss trailblazer and visionary chef Alice Waters and gangsta gardener, designer and artist Ron Finley discussing the intersection of guerrilla gardens, school-supported agriculture, seasonal cooking and the power of sharing food and looking at how these create social and environmental change. Or consider regenerative agriculture and the future of meat with Applegate's Gina Asoudegan and rancher Greg Gunthorp. Another highlight is respected podcaster and “The Kitchen Sisters” producer Davia Nelson’s storytelling summit about how to prepare and conduct interviews for produced radio segments and find your voice as a host. Tickets are $50 per summit 

Free outside talks at the Food for Change Tent will tell the Slow Food story, offer calls to action, and engage the public in the conversation. Reducing food waste in restaurants, the future of farming and protecting pollinators are among the many topics to be discussed.

6. Network and learn with other food movement leaders

Before the festival portion of the event kicks off on Friday evening, food movement leaders such as farmers and producers, Slow Food community leaders and organizational partners, chefs and educators will gather for the annual Slow Food Leader Summit. It’s a time to network, learn new leadership skills, explore crucial issues in the food system and inspire community efforts during a Thursday evening reception and the summit at the University of Denver on Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Leader Summit participants can continue focused meetings and informal meet-ups throughout the weekend. Registration for the summit is required. 

More about Slow Food USA

The festival is hosted by Slow Food USA, a global, grassroots nonprofit organization founded in 1989 to prevent the disappearance of local food cultures and traditions, counteract the rise of fast life and combat people’s dwindling interest in the food they eat, where it comes from and how our food choices affect the world around us. Since its beginnings, Slow Food has grown into a global movement involving millions of people in more than 160 countries working to ensure everyone has access to good, clean and fair food. There are 150 chapters in the United States. 

Slow Food Nations proceeds support Slow Food USA’s initiatives, and presenting sponsors for this year’s festival are Larimer SquareVISIT DENVER and Whole Foods Market.