17 Minutes with Jordan Sturdy, Farmer & Mayor of Pemberton
With the upcoming Outstanding in the Fields feast scheduled to be held on his farm in the Pemberton Valley, we thought this might be a good time to track down farmer/mayor Jordan Sturdy to ask him a few questions…
Jordan Sturdy is the Mayor of Pemberton and owns North Arm Farm. Jordan came by farming in a rather accidental way. After purchasing farm his land in the Pemberton Valley, which seemed like a good deal at the time, he started farming because he felt that he couldn’t do much worse than the people to whom he was leasing. In fact, he was convinced that he could do better as all they did was take from the land and not give back. Little did he know what he was getting into…
Three things about your neighbourhood that make you want to live there: amazing soil, amazing people, and amazing potential.
Summer tastes like: strawberry jam.
Most unusual place you have seen a food producing garden: NYC vacant lot.
What is the biggest challenge about farming in the Pemberton Valley? Market access and transportation.
The one thing that you grow better than anyone else: With the hundreds of things we grow we are great generalists as opposed to the best specialists. We grow some pretty awesome weeds though.
The one ingredient not grown locally that you couldn’t do without: olives.
Place you love to eat when you are in Whistler: Araxi.
Favourite Pemberton landmark: Mt Currie.
Is there a single food item that says ‘Pemberton’ to you? Potatoes, but it could be anything.
Coffee or tea: coffee.
Book you’re reading: Younger Next Year.
Last place traveled: New York City.
Biggest fear: our childrens future.
Favourite season: Spring.
Cheap place for dinner: my house.
Best sneaker in the world: sandals.
Your ancestry: mixed.
Under what circumstances would you join the army: I served when I was young.
Your paternal grandfather’s personal story: born in Vancouver to a family of chiropractors.
How did your connection to food and gardens begin: on my mothers hip in the backyard.
Dumbest purchase ever: oh, so many…
What are you proud of: my kids.
The thing that makes you the angriest: dumb purchases.
The view from your favourite window: right now, hummingbirds.
Ice cream flavour of choice: vanilla.
Most beautiful body of water you have ever seen: Pacific Ocean.
Food your mom makes better than anyone: rice pudding.
Talent you wish you possessed: speaking multiple languages.
The trend you wish you never followed, but did: neon bicycle shorts.
Musical instrument you long to play: guitar.
Sport you gave up: rock climbing.
The game you’re best at: Scrabble.
Mac or PC: PC, moving to Mac.
Favourite sports team: Pemberton Secondary’s junior girls basketball team.
The number of fist fights you’ve been in: 1.
The scariest situation you’ve ever been in: avalanche.
Three things of no value that you will keep until you die: anything worth keeping until you die by its nature is valuable.
Local person you admire most: my mom.
The thing you’re most ashamed of: like I’ll answer that!
Best concert experience ever: Pemberton Festival.
Describe your favourite meal: pepper steak, asparagus, new potatoes, fresh bread, butter and red wine with my wife.
Favourite insect and why: ladybugs, because they eat aphids.
Favourite park: Central Park, NYC.
The dish you’re proud of: see favourite meal.
The thing that makes you the most nervous: careless employees.
Town you were born in: Vancouver.
Old television shows you can tolerate re-runs of: Green Acres.
First memory: Halloween at 3 years old.
What are you listening to as you answer these questions: Hummingbirds and kids.
Album that first made you love music: Sergeant Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band.
Best garage sale find: Alaska chainsaw mill.
The career path you considered but never followed: law.
Three words that best describe you at age 14: obnoxious, pimply, overbearing.
Three words that best describe your garden: no garden here.
The first three things you do every morning: ablutions, coffee, computer.
The thing you’re addicted to: water.
Biggest hope: great life for my kids.
Luckiest moment of your life: coming out of the avalanche intact.
Favourite book as a child: House at Pooh Corner.
This was the 45th interview of what will eventually amount to 500 profiles of people who have made life in BC that much more interesting. At the rate we’re going it’ll take three years, at which time we’ll probably just start shooting for 1,000.