Written By: Caley Callahan, Regina Cortez, Mike Gill, Sarah Hochman
Greetings! Our class, “Farm, Food and Environmental Policy (ACE 199 CA),” has for the past eight weeks been discussing agricultural practices and policies in California. This past Saturday our much anticipated spring break adventure to northern California began. Some of us had to wake up to catch a bus at 3:30am to Chicago from Champaign. We enjoyed the 3.5-hour flight to San Francisco, and when we arrived we experienced our first trip on the BART metro station, luggage and all. We rode all the way from SFO to downtown Berkeley, and from there we walked to our hotel, checked in, and quickly got settled before heading to downtown San Francisco to enjoy the waterfront views and tourist attractions. A few group members went to look at the sea lions and enjoyed a sailing tour around the bay. We found a seafood restaurant in Fisherman’s Wharf to indulge ourselves in the coastal cuisine and city nightlife before making our way back to the hotel.
On Sunday we enjoyed a leisurely schedule of roaming around the city and enjoying the sights and sounds of San Francisco. Some of us took a double decker bus tour around San Francisco that stopped at such locations as the Golden Gate Bridge and Coit Tower. A few toured the SF Giants ballpark, AT&T Park. Others stuck around Berkeley to check out the campus and botanical gardens (an uphill hike!) We all met up at the Embarcadero BART stop before heading to a local waterfront restaurant to meet with the President of CropLife America, Mr. Jay Vroom. He had invited his son Brian to join us who is a chef in town, and we discussed food and agricultural issues concerning the city, state and nation. Brian talked to us about what it’s like to source many of the ingredients he is using to cook from local supply and farmer’s markets as well as the trends and tastes of local San Francisco foodies. We wanted to take this opportunity to thank the Vroom family and CropLife America for their generosity in hosting dinner for us on Sunday night and know that our entire experiential learning program is due in part to Jay’s ideas and advice.
For more photos of our trip, you can CLICK HERE.