Hey wonderful people!
As winter rolls into spring and life up here in the Northern hemisphere shudders off the last frost to bud into life, I want to extend a warm invitation to each of you across the world to sit down and share lunch with me and each other on the 18th of July this year - and not just any old lunch, but the Big Lunch!
'What is this Big Lunch?' I hear you say. Well, its pretty simple...
Imagine its a warm Sunday afternoon in July - the 18th of July to be exact - and you are sitting outside at a table, or on a picnic blanket, your favourite meal in front of you.
Imagine the colours and smells of the meal.
The air around you is filled with laughter, singing and the buzz of conversation. As you look up from your plate you see that the table in front of you is brimming with yummy food and people - some familiar faces, some new, some young and some old.
A familiar voice asks you to raise your glass and lean in for a photograph. As the shutter of the camera closes imagine the scene freezes, and as it does so your perspective zooms up and out from your table, until you can see the whole city, town or area you are in. There are similar lunches taking place all over it.
You notice interesting little variations around the common theme of tables brimming with food - some are inside, some outside, some are in church halls, some in streets, some are a 100 strong, some are 4, some have music, some dancing, some have Indian food, some have champ, some have games, some face painting. All of them have smiling people breaking bread. You continue to zoom further up and out. It’s not just the city, it’s across the whole country and it's all happening at the same time.
Suddenly someone touches your shoulder, offers you a top up on your drink and asks you if you want to see the picture they just took. You’re back at your table and conversations begin as you look at the photo. Later that night you log onto the big lunch website and there are photos (of people with glasses raised) and stories that people have posted from all those lunches you imagined across the country. You didn’t just break bread with the 20 people at your table that day, but with millions across Ireland, the UK and beyond.
That’s the Big Lunch. In essence it’s a giant self organised celebration of food and community on the 18th July 2010 across the UK and Ireland (and maybe beyond if some of you decide to make it so) – A space for sharing stories, laughter, culture, and friendship through the communal sharing of food. A space of physical, creative and relational nurture. The idea is that they are locally organised and hosted by communities, so people can run the lunch
what ever way fits them.
How can I get involved?
Its pretty straight forward and I imagine it’s pretty obvious by now, there are 3 main roles you can play:
- Organise and host a lunch in your Community or Area - it could be in a garden, on your street or in your house - where ever you want - and don't worry about trying to break the world record for biggest meal, even if its just 2 people you are adding to the millions across the world! Register your lunch and get loads of tips and help organising at the website below!
- Support someone else to host a lunch - you could bring or grow some food, some chairs, a couple of knives and forks, or play some music, it all adds up to making a great party! Check out the website below to register your interest in supporting a lunch.
- Spread the word! - We are trying to make this event as big as possible, so please, please spread the Big Lunch about your vast networks!
The lovely UK Big Lunch Website: www.thebiglunch.com - there you'll find everything you need to organise a lunch!
In the Republic of Ireland there is a sister event called 'Street Feast' and that website will be up ASAP
In a 7th Generation capacity I not only want to encourage all you you to host a lunch but also want to challenge you to make your lunch as sustainable as possible – that simply means being conscious of where the food at the lunches comes from. Is it healthy? Is it sourced as locally as possible? Is it fairtrade? You could even join the Big Grow and grow some of the food yourself.
I am really excited to sitting down to lunch with you all over the world on the 18th of July! And please upload a picture you take at your lunches to the 7th Generation Project site so we can all see ourselves celebrating together!
7th Generation Project Coordination Team