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Podcast 39: Serving and Sweetening The USA: Americorps VISTA and Rhubarb Apple Pie

On July 5, with guests Grace Carson and Loris Points, we cheered for those who serve our country—and for pie. Both Loris and Grace come from families of seven, Grace in sixth and Loris in second place in the birth orders of their respective septets.

From Grace, we learned about the year she has given all of us as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer. She works to strengthen the local and regional food system in central Kentucky at Bluegrass Farm To Table, and particularly focuses on increasing SNAP recipients' access to good, Kentucky-grown produce through Bluegrass Double Dollars.

Loris brought with her a beautiful crystal prize, won on July 2 during the 2016 Great American Pie Contest. Isn't is sweet that Lexington launches its July 4 celebration with this event each year? Loris, a legendary Lafayette High School teacher who learned pastry-making and pies from her mother and a legendary Home-Ec teacher, entered the annual contest for the first time with her Rhubarb Apple Pie—and won first place, besting 42 other completely homemade entries. Staff and volunteers at the Downtown Lexington Corporation cut each pie—including 20+ partially homemade ones—into eight pieces,  and long lines of pie-lovers enjoyed pie and Chaney's Dairy Barn ice cream.

We enjoyed these two flavors of patriotism this week, along with some noteworthy on-the-spot volunteering. With our two chef co-hosts traveling and Rona solo hosting, some serious technical confusion got smoothed out when Mick Jeffries, Loris's radio guru son-in-law, pitched in to help. Among many other intriguing credentials, Mick is the storied WRFL Trivial Thursdays show host who helped launch both WRFL and Lexington Community Radio, with its two channels. LCR manager Chuck Clenney - you pitched in too! Gratitude, always, to Lexington Community Radio for making Hot Water Cornbread possible.

Enjoy this show! (And Loris has generously provided the recipe for her winning pie and crust. See a draft here.)

From left in the Lexington Community Radio studio: Rona Roberts, Hot Water Cornbread host; Loris Points, acclaimed retired teacher, activist, and now Lexington's Great American Pie contest Made-From-Scratch Champion, with her Rhubarb Apple Pie; Grace Carson, AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer with Bluegrass Farm to Table and Bluegrass Double Dollars. Photo credit: Chuck Clenney--thank you!

From left in the Lexington Community Radio studio: Rona Roberts, Hot Water Cornbread host; Loris Points, acclaimed retired teacher, activist, and now Lexington's Great American Pie contest Made-From-Scratch Champion, with her Rhubarb Apple Pie; Grace Carson, AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer with Bluegrass Farm to Table and Bluegrass Double Dollars.

Photo credit: Chuck Clenney--thank you!

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