When long-time Slow Food Utah volunteer webmaster Matthew Wallace announced he needed to step down last year, our first response was panic. Matthew had put in countless hours over the years as he worked tirelessly to build the Slow Food Utah site from scratch using the Trunity platform. Thanks Matthew’s efforts, It had grown into a virtual encyclopedia of local food resources, events, and slow food-related news and articles from the region and beyond. It also took a lot of work and skill to maintain. We recognized we would need to build a new site that would be easier for non-professional webmasters to manage. But as an all-volunteer organization that operates on a frugal budget, we couldn’t hire a designer without having to cut funding for other programs. In the interim, Jen Colby agreed to fill in as webmaster and try to keep the site at least minimally functional.
Luckily for us, at about this time Andrew Stone joined the Board of Directors and offered to help. Andrew had built other sites for his own business and community events like the 9th and 9th Street Festival, blogs at SLC Urban, and was familiar with several web and blogging platforms. Despite his busy schedule, he offered to help design the new site. Over the past few months, Andrew and Jen built a test site using a WordPress theme. As you can see, the new site is now live and public! It is a work in progress, but we hope you like it. You’ll notice streamlined navigation, new calendar and events pages, photo galleries, this blog, and more. We’ll be focusing the new site content on our organization’s activities. We’ll be relying on other sites such as Utah’s Own to provide producer directories and local food source lists. Our new links page showcases some of our favorite sites. Andrew has generously agreed to be the primary webmaster, with assistance from Jen and other Slow Food Utah members.
One thing that hasn’t changed is our local internet host, Xmission. They continue to provide generous hosting support to hundreds of local non-profits, including ours. We thank company founder and Slow Food supporter Pete Ashdown and his team for their continued sponsorship and technical assistance. In addition to this website, we’ll continue to send a monthly newsletter to subscribers thanks to dedicated volunteer editor Heather Haley. Chantelle Bourdeaux maintains our Facebook and Twitter social networking sites. One way or another, we’ll continue to share news and events related to Slow Food’s mission of promoting good, clean, and fair food for all. Live Slow!