Dedicated to cookies

Cookie Cart, the nonprofit north Minneapolis bakery, will host a public open house and dedication on Sept. 8 from 3 to 6 p.m. at its location, 1119 W. Broadway. The dedication takes place at 4:30 p.m. and will honor Sister Jean Thuerauf, who founded the bakery, and who died earlier this summer. The event is free and open to the public, though advance registration is suggested at The bakery offers leadership skills in a work environment to about 200 teens a year.

Charlie Awards celebrates food, drink

Mark your calendar for the sixth annual Charlie Awards, which celebrates our local independent food and beverage community. The big event will be held Nov. 13 at 3:30 p.m. at the Pantages Theatre (710 Hennepin Av. S., Mpls.).

Two free panel discussions precede the November awards. On Sept. 13 at 6:30 p.m., "The Business of Food and Drink" will be held at the Rayette Lofts Building (261 E. 5th St., St. Paul). On Oct. 25, "Innovations in the Industry" will be held at General Mills headquarters in Golden Valley. Both discussions are free and open to the public, and will include a complimentary happy hour in advance.

The November awards will be followed by an after-party at the IDS Crystal Court (about 5 p.m.), and a chefs dinner at Windows on Minnesota at 6:30 p.m. The chefs dinner will be a four-course meal with wine pairings and feature four chefs honored at last year's awards (Gavin Kaysen of Spoon and Stable, Thomas Kim of the Rabbit Hole, Marshall Paulsen of Birchwood Cafe and Karyn Tomlinson of Borough).

Tickets are available at and at the box offices of the State, Orpheum and Pantages theaters, or at Ticketmaster. Cost for the awards ceremony with after-party is $35 ($25 for industry members). With the addition of the chefs dinner, the cost is $150, with part of the proceeds benefiting Open Arms of Minnesota.

Food justice for all

Mississippi Market will moderate a discussion on "Food, Farmers and Food Justice" on Sept. 21 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at its store at 740 E. 7th St., St. Paul. Panelists include Pakou Hang, executive director of the Hmong American Farmers Association; Deanna Abbott-Foster, executive director of Dayton's Bluff Community Council; and Elena Gaarder, program officer for the East Side of St. Paul at Nexus Community Partners. The discussion will look at current food justice initiatives on the East Side of St. Paul, as well as Mississippi Market's role in supporting food justice. Light appetizers and produce samples will be available. The event is free but due to limited space, registration is required. To register, see foodjusticepanel.

In celebration of produce and youth

Urban Roots, the East St. Paul youth program focused on food and environmental programs, will host a fundraiser on Sept. 15 from 5:30 to 9 p.m. at Harriet Island Pavilion (200 Dr. Justus Ohage Blvd., St. Paul). The event includes dinner from chef Taelyn Lang of Cook St. Paul — making use of some of the produce the youths have grown — with desserts from pastry chef Diane Yang of Spoon and Stable. Joe Alton of the Growler magazine will emcee the event, which will also have craft cocktails, local beers, wine, music and more. Tickets are $100 from

James Beard approval

Congrats to Matthew Johnson, 21, of Duluth, who is one of 10 recipients of the first of the James Beard Foundation National Scholars Program. He won $20,000 to apply to his fourth year of culinary studies at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y. Post-graduation, he wants to be a food writer or video producer. "I've worked in restaurants since I was 15. I want a break from the long hours and want to explore other venues," he said in an interview. Find his video work on YouTube, on his Brainfood channel.