Caity Evans To Lead New Collaboration Between Tucson Originals and Local First AZ

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Local First Arizona has a new collaboration with Tucson Originals Restaurants, an alliance of independently owned local restaurants, purveyors and partners working together to raise awareness of the rich and vibrant culinary community in Tucson. Together they are combining forces to build demand for locally grown foods and local restaurants, and to showcase restaurants and southern Arizona chefs and food/beverage artisans through innovative events such as SAVOR Southern AZ, Taste of Tucson, and the newly resurrected Oktoberfest slated for the fall of 2018. 

Through this partnership, a new hybrid role to support both entities has been created. We are pleased to introduce Caity Evans as the new Local Food Outreach and Events Coordinator, who works with both food producers and restaurants to increase community engagement. Caity's role will include connecting Arizonans with locally owned restaurants as well as the farming and food-producing community to build a more resilient food system, strengthening Arizona’s economy. The dynamic role focuses on event planning, communications and marketing, and community outreach. 

Get to know Caity, and send her a welcome note at [email protected]

TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOUR BACKGROUND.

After years as a hairdresser, I was looking for a change. On a whim, I applied to Bookmans Flagstaff as a cashier. Figuring I could work there among my favorite things (Books) before deciding what to do next. I ended up falling into events and community outreach and instantly fell in love with the work. Making connections with community partners and creating events and outreach opportunities with organizations like Local First Arizona helped me to grow and learn how rewarding localism and supporting my community was. 

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WHAT DREW YOU TO LOCAL FIRST ARIZONA?

Not only does Local First Arizona host awesome community events and support Arizona owned businesses as the largest independent business coalition in the country, but LFA also makes it incredibly easy to shop local for the everyday consumer. Whether it’s locating a restaurant on the local food finder, shifting 10% or moving your money to a community bank or credit union, anyone can be a localist. It’s so rewarding to share some of the Local First Arizona resources with friends and family and see them hit the ground running supporting local businesses in their own communities. 

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LOCAL BUSINESS AND WHY?

It’s hard to pick just one. Of course, I love my old place of work, Bookmans. They offer great deals and the stores will always be my home away from home. But if I had to pick another favorite local business it would be Tanias “33”. Located in Tucson’s Barrio Hollywood neighborhood, Tanias “33” is everything you want out of a Sonoran style Mexican restaurant. Not to mention they have a ton of delicious vegetarian options. The cauliflower tacos are the best things I’ve ever had in my life. 

TELL US ABOUT ONE OF YOUR LIFE'S PASSIONS.

BOOKS! If there is one thing I’m completely obsessed with its books. I will read pretty much anything. Fiction, non-fiction, true crime. I’m even a completely unashamed fan of young adult novels. Aside from books I love being outside and cooking. I recently learned how to make my own pasta from scratch so I’m very excited about cooking homemade pasta dishes for my friends and family. 

WHAT MAKES YOU PROUD TO BE AN ARIZONAN?

I am so proud to be an Arizonan or what my family calls a “Zonie”. I was born and raised in San Diego and I often get asked why I moved to the desert of all places. My answer is always the same. 1. Arizona is not just a desert but more accurately a vibrant landscape of mountains, rivers, forests and yes a breathtakingly beautiful desert or two. And 2. The communities. Arizona is full of welcoming and kind people who support their neighbors. I couldn’t be more proud to call Arizona home. 

WHAT ARE YOU MOST EXCITED TO BE WORKING ON AT LOCAL FIRST ARIZONA?

Being the Local Food Outreach and Events Coordinator I am so excited to work with all the amazing restaurants and food purveyors in Southern Arizona. With the help of Tucson Originals and the Local First Team, my hope is to kick off the rest of 2018 showcasing just why Tucson is a City of Gastronomy. 

We are excited for all of the upcoming food and restaurant events Caity will be coordinating, stay tuned for more!