Medina, NY - When organizers met last Wednesday to put the final touches on this year's Farm to Table Dinner, everything was falling into place: the Village had granted permission to close Main Street, equipment rentals had been confirmed, the final layout was finalized and the menu was taking shape. Like the pieces of a puzzle, things were falling into place, just as they should be with one exception: the weather.
"Hosting any event outside is always a gamble," said Cindy Robinson of the Orleans Renaissance Group. "You can never be one hundred percent certain it will cooperate." ORG is the host group for the annual dinner.
"Last year was no concern- WNY was suffering from a drought and it was a good bet we'd have a dry evening," said Robinson. "it turned out to be a perfect evening."
The 2016 dinner weather was idyllic- sunny, warm with a slight breeze. A classic summer evening. However, this year's weather patterns have been very different. So far, 2017 has experienced much more rain and a great deal of those showers have been of the "pop-up" variety.
The event planners scheduled August 10 as a rain date, but at the time it was scheduled they were unaware that the Lois McClure would be stopping of in Medina that evening as part of the 200th anniversary celebration of the Erie Canal.
As organizers discussed the logistics of a rain date, they took into account not only potential weather problems but the impact of the McClure event, issues with rescheduling equipment rentals and the difficulty in notifying dinner attendees on short notice. All things considered, they arrived at the conclusion the most ideal solution would be to have an alternative site... but where?
"As we pondered the problem, someone suggested The Gallagher" said Robinson. "It seemed like the perfect solution so we enquired and they have generously consented to serve as the dinner's rain site." Kara Zambito of Zambistro agreed. "The Gallagher is a stunning historic farm in Medina. You couldn't ask for a better alternative location than that for a farm to table event. We're grateful to Martin and Jenna Brunning for this wonderful kindness."
Martin and Jenna Brunning purchased the historic William J. Gallagher barn on North Gravel Road in 2015. Built in 1882, it is a well-known local historic landmark, 40'x 110', with a pasture ringed by iconic cobblestone fence posts. The Brunnings have spent the last two years restoring and transforming the site into one of WNY's premier event facilities. (www.thegallagherbarn.com) With this final piece in place, event organizers breathed a sigh of relief.
"In the event of rain, we certainly could've proceeded with the rain date as planned," said Zambito. "But, having an alternative location- especially one as phenomenal as The Gallagher will be better all around. Dinner attendees should be excited with either location."
"If we have a sunny, summer day, we'll be on Historic Main Street as planned." she said. "If not, we'll be at the historic Gallagher."
As the dinner date of August 3 approaches and dinner attendees are unsure or want a venue change update, they should check the Canal Village Farmers' Market Facebook page or call the English Rose Tea Shoppe at (585) 798-4410.
"We're hoping for sunshine," said Robinson. "But if rain falls, we're not worried- we have two amazing venues."