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As the planet hurtles through space, on it’s neverending arc around the sun, we in New York find ourselves, once again, on a protracted tilt away from our star’s light, into darkness. Basically, the winter solstice is here.

EcoStation:NY, the organization that brought us the Bushwick Farmers’ Market and the Bushwick Campus Farm, is throwing their annual winter solstice feast and fundraiser on Friday, Dec. 16th from 7pm to midnight in the massive Nut Roaster Studio at Brooklyn Fire Proof (just off the Morgan Ave. L stop in Bushwick).

The party will feature food from Bushwick’s finest kitchens, including Roberta’s, Northeast Kingdom, Cafe GhiaArancini BrosWyckoff Starr, and Verde Coal Oven, with local brews from Sixpoint Craft Ales. A soul sermon or two will be served by Reverend Billy and the Stop Shopping Gospel Choir, the party’s special guests.

EcoStation:NY founder Sean-Michael Fleming has been throwing solstice parties for 17 years. As he told Edible Brooklyn:

“’It’s the original holiday,’ says Fleming, referring to the shortest day of the year, which usually falls on December 21 and has been celebrated since way before Christmas or even Hanukkah, as a time to remember the year’s harvest and look forward to the sun’s return. For Fleming, it meant all that and more: ‘For me, it was a reaction to the commercialization of holidays; cooking is a much richer gift to give.’”

Three years ago he turned the annual event into a fundraiser for EcoStation:NY, which he founded along with Travis Trent and Kendall Morrison (better known as the Mushroom Man for the fungi he grows at the Lindell Bushwick Community Garden, another EcoStation:NY project.)

EcoStation:NY’s work is visible all over Bushwick. They founded the Bushwick Farmers’ Market in 2009 and now hold three weekly markets. The markets sell fresh, locally grown food, including produce from another of their projects, the Bushwick Campus Farm. The Bushwick Campus is a big building that houses four small high schools, and the Campus Farm is a garden on school grounds that gives students at the high schools a chance to learn about nutrition and the environment through hands-on experience.

Their next projects? A greenhouse for the Campus Farm so that more of the growing action can happen during the school year (check out their Kickstarter), and the vegetable oil- and solar-powered Bushwick Farmers’ Market Green Machine, a sort of farmers-market-in-a-truck that EcoStation:NY will drive to nearby food deserts that can’t yet financially support their own farmers’ markets. The Green Machine project just received a competitive national USDA grant, and EcoStation:NY will keep building their community connections by working on the project with students at the Brooklyn Automotive High School.

Why not spend one of the longest nights of the year eating well, dancing well, and supporting a group that stands out because of how much they’ve already made happen. Suggested donation is $20, but EcoStation:NY says “In the spirit of community, no one will be turned away.”

Winter Solstice Feast 2011
Bushwick Farmers’ Market Benefit Bash
Special Guest: Reverend Billy and the Stop Shopping Gospel Choir
Friday Dec. 16 7pm-midnight
Brooklyn Fire Proof, 120 Ingraham Street
RSVP here

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