Indiana’s First Lady Karen Pence has chosen agriculture as the theme of her annual high profile, fund raising event. The Indiana First Lady’s Charitable Foundation is a nonprofit organization designed to raise funds for charities across the state. Each year they hold one fund raising event, a luncheon that will attract over 600 guests and donors.
First Lady Karen Pence told HAT that this year’s event, set for Thursday of this week, will focus on Indiana agriculture, “We wanted to focus on Indiana agriculture and all the contributions it makes to our state.” Representatives from the state’s leading farm and commodity organizations will be honored guests at the event. “We wanted to reach out to these groups and give them an ‘attaboy’ — we love what you are doing for Indiana and we want to applaud you. We want to use the luncheon to say thank you to all the farmers in Indiana.”
Mrs. Pence said the decorations and the centerpieces at the event will all have an agricultural theme. Even much of the food on the menu will come from Indiana, “We wanted to choose food that was grown in Indiana so, where we could, we chose food that came from Indiana farms,” she said. The Indiana State Department of Agriculture has been promoting locally grown, food products as part of their new Indiana Grown program. Mrs. Pence has been a strong supporter of local food and gardening, even having a garden at the Governor’s residence. “We have even added bee hives this year,” she told HAT. She added that she has, on occasion, sent the Governor into the garden to pick fresh vegetables for dinner.
The event, to be held at the J.W. Marriott in Indianapolis, will also feature some surprise big name entertainment. But, as the First Lady pointed out, one special charity will benefit from a significant donation at the end of the event, “We felt a great cause that needed to be recognized was Feeding Indiana’s Hungry.” Mrs. Pence said there is a natural tie between those who produce food and the need to feed those who do not have enough food.
More on agriculture’s tie to hunger relief in the Hoosier State in tomorrow’s report.