The First Home Grown Meal: By the Numbers / by Place Lab

Home Grown Meals gather local Gary residents and other invited guests to share a meal and explore issues of civic import to place, community, and home. Participants are provided a free meal and encouraged to explore topics significant to the City of Gary. This first Home Grown Meal, centered on “Reputation and Response,” asked guests to discuss their communities’ reputations, spirit, and economic and cultural opportunities.

Friends, neighbors and strangers gather in private home for Home Grown Meals 1. Photo by David Sampson.

Friends, neighbors and strangers gather in private home for Home Grown Meals 1. Photo by David Sampson.

35:  Number of guests gathered for our first Home Grown Meal.

90+: Age of hosts J. Preston and M. Preston Sr., who graciously welcomed guests into their home.

12: Age of the youngest guest.

3: Entrée options prepared by Chef Evelyn Holmes—roasted herb chicken, maple glazed yams, and grilled white fish with lemon dill sauce. The meal also featured curried butternut squash soup, a locally-sourced cheese platter, and apple cobber ice cream.

2:  Number of reunited family members pleasantly surprised to see each other at this meal.

1937:  Founding year of Mae’s Louisiana Kitchen, the restaurant in Gary where Mr. Preston proposed to Mrs. Preston decades ago. Mae's former owner was one of the dinner guests at the first Home Grown Meal.

13:  Neighborhoods in Gary. The first Home Grown Meal was in the Tolleston neighborhood.

34:  Months Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson has been in office in Gary (as of Oct. 2015 - time of first Home Grown meal.) Mayor Freeman-Wilson was one of the dinner guests at the Preston residence.

120: Minutes guests spent together, exchanging their neighborhoods’ histories, making recommendations, and sharing a full course dinner.

33: Days until the next Home Grown Meal, as of the date this post was published. The next event in this series is slated for December 9th! ArtHouse will present: Home Grown Meal // Memory Lane.

ArtHouse gifts for Home Grown Meal participants. Photo by Sara Pooley.

ArtHouse gifts for Home Grown Meal participants. Photo by Sara Pooley.