Slow Food Martha’s Vineyard is combining its philosophy with the ancient traditions of the Aquinnah Wampanoag Indian Tribe with a celebratory harvest dinner beginning at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 22, at the Chilmark Community Center. Traditional native Wampanoag dishes including journey cakes with cranberries, venison stew, and sea bass with sage stuffing will be served. Corn meal from the Sandwich Grist Mill will be used for the authentic journey cakes to be cooked in Juli Vanderhoop’s clay oven.

Current tribal elders grew up until about the age of eight with no electricity. Their formative years were spent gathering for meals; watching crops so birds didn’t eat them and gathering blueberries, blackberries, chokeberries and cranberries. Tribal members rarely shopped for food and instead planted gardens, raised their own animals and gathered food abundant in Aquinnah.

In other words, slow food isn’t a new term for them.

Tribal Elder Kristina Hook-Leslie will talk about her life as a forager and the tribal education she received from her mother and grandmother. June Manning and Juli Vanderhoop will share stories too.

After dinner, the short film ‘Sustainable Vineyard - Kristina Hook-Leslie Foraging in Aquinnah’ will be screened. This eight-minute film was created by local filmmakers, Liz Witham and Ken Wentworth of Film-Truth Productions. It will be part of a feature length film on sustainability.

Bring a potluck dish to share, along with your own plates, bowl, utensils and BYOB.

Donations are appreciated.