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LECTURE & r & Ethical Eating & r & & lt;span class= "dropcap " & T & lt;/span & he environmental movement has the reputation of being filled with those dreaded secular humanists, cavorting off in the woods. Yet many people committed to ecological sustainability draw deeply upon faith and spirituality, and those beliefs inform their views and actions in the world.

Helping to make that connection, Gonzaga University is focusing on food and agriculture as a theme for the fall semester. Every freshman was required to read Michael Pollan's The Omnivore's Dilemma over the summer, and the university is offering a series of lectures, films and events this fall focusing on making ethical food choices and learning about sustainability.

Next Thursday, Mark Graham of Villanova University will talk on "THEOLOGY, ETHICS AND AGRICULTURE" as part of the Catholicism for a New Millennium lecture series. Graham is a Catholic moral theologian and the author of Sustainable Agriculture: A Christian Ethic of Gratitude. The book examines how contemporary trends in American agriculture threaten sustainability and suggests ways that a Christian theological ethic can help people develop an alternative vision and future, according to Timothy Clancy, S.J., of GU's philosophy department.

"This topic is very spiritual, I think, and also very close to home and practical," say Clancy. "It's something you can do in your own life."

The focus on food continues through the end of the year, with two more speakers and an art exhibition exploring food. "Safe Food and Fertilizer," a lecture by GU graduate and former Quincy, Wash., mayor Patty Martin, takes place at 5:30 pm, on Monday, Nov. 12; and Ellen Maccarone of GU's philosophy faculty will speak on "The Post-Industrial Eater: Aligning Ethical Values and Food Choices," at 7 pm, Wednesday, Nov. 14. Both events will be in the Jepson Center Wolff Auditorium. The Jundt Art Museum Arcade Gallery hosts the "Food for Thought" art exhibition from Nov. 30-March 8, 2008.


Mark Graham presents "Theology, Ethics and Agriculture," on Thursday, Nov. 1, at 7:30 pm at Cataldo Hall on the GU campus.

GALA & r & To the Marrow & r &

Ice bars are cool. The only thing cooler is the warm fuzzy feeling you get while sipping a gourmet cocktail and knowing that your shameless indulgence will benefit a worthy cause. Proceeds from this year's EPICUREAN DELIGHT -- Spokane's annual black-tie gala -- next Friday will help the Inland Northwest Blood Center to underwrite some of the cost of finding bone marrow donors for patients who need a transplant.

The INBC is the regional center for the National Marrow Donor Program, an organization that helps match patients and donors. "It's a beacon of hope for patients not only in Spokane, but around the world," says Paul Oleniacz, director of development at INBC. "Thousands of adults and children need marrow or blood stem cell transplants every year, and 70 percent don't have a family member who is compatible." In the 20 years that INBC has served as the regional testing center for the NMDP, they've put 30,000 people on the registry and facilitated 150 transplant requests.

But, back to the party. This year's gala features more restaurant, winery and microbrewery participants than ever and will feature custom cocktails developed by Moxie's Ian Wingate. And the restaurants aren't just in this for fun: They're competing within categories -- hors d'oeuvres, first courses, entr & eacute;es, desserts -- and for the overall People's Choice Award, won last year by Wild Sage.

The jazz/blues duo Lush will provide lounge ambience, and Serenade will play for dancing. Last year's event was sold out, and more than a thousand Epicureans are expected this time. Just a few tickets remain, so hop to it and don't miss out.


The Epicurean Delight black-tie gala at the Spokane Convention Center, 334 W. Spokane Falls Blvd., is Friday, Nov. 2, at 6 pm. Tickets are $150. Visit or call 232-4567.