A ton of super important things turn 30 this year: like the discovery of the hole in the Ozone, the country’s first non-smoking ban in restaurants and yes, Back to the Future. Of all the things that made 1985 great, the thing we’re most excited about celebrating this year is the 30th anniversary of Farm Aid! Organized in ’85 by Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Mellencamp, the first Farm Aid concert set out to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm families on their land. Since then, Farm Aid has raised more than $48 million to promote a vibrant family farm system.
To commemorate Farm Aid’s 30th year, we’ll be joining lots of other good food advocates at the Farm Aid 30 concert in downtown Chicago at the FirstMerit Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island on September 19 ! This year promises to be the best year yet with an awesome lineup including founders Willie, Neil and John along with Farm Aid board member Dave Matthews, plus other amazing artists including Jack Johnson. In addition to the fantastic music, we can’t wait to visit and be a part of the HOMEGROWN Village where family-farmed, local and organic food will be served up beside fun and informative hands-on food and farm activities.
As much fun as Farm Aid 30 will be, the anniversary couldn’t have come at a more important time. With the number of massive factory farms on the rise and giant biotech companies influencing Congress to pass legislation like the DARK Act, there’s no better time than now to raise awareness about the myriad issues facing family farmers. For an idea of how dire family farmers’ situations are, just look to Farm Aid co-founder Neil Young. He’s upping the volume on his criticism of Big Ag: listen to his new album The Monsanto Years made with Willie Nelson’s sons Lukas and Micah, or see the new documentary he’s put out, Seeding Fear. So, to help Neil and the other the Farm Aid stars continue to help family farms, we’ll be spreading the word about Farm Aid 30 and will be attending too. If you can, join us in Chicago – find tickets here!