December 2019 Newsletter for the Arena Market and Cafe
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December 2019
Our Co-op on the Coast

Arena Market and Cafe / Coastal Organics Cooperative

Manager's Report

We are very excited to announce our new collaborative management team at the co-op. We have brought on a new Assistant General Manager, Lee Farmer, to work with Natalie. Lee has a strong business background, including three years advising over 20 agricultural cooperatives in Ethiopia through their work at a Nuru International. Most recently, Lee worked at our very own Oz Farm! Lee will be spending the next few months learning everything they can from Natalie and from there the two of them will form their co-management plan. 

We have also promoted some of our long-time staff to Coordinator and Supervisor roles. Staff in these roles will ensure that the day-to-day front-end operations of the co-op are all running smoothly. 

The goals of these changes are to:

1. Create a sustainable management structure that ensures we have the capacity to thrive as a business without burning out our staff

2. Build clear decision-making structures that empower all of our staff to take ownership over the co-op’s functioning

3. Formalize leadership roles for some of the staff who have gone above and beyond in the job responsibilities for some time now 

Thank you again for your continued support!

Natalie Cortese, General Manager


When the Power Shuts Off in Town, the Co-op Will Stay Powered Up and Open

The co-op will soon install a whole-store stand-by generator so we can remain open and serve the community when the electricity gets interrupted. Look for our brochure at the register that invites you to invest in the co-op to make this happen. You can also find it online here.

The Arena Market and Café offers a warm, lighted, safe place with hot food, coffee and drinks, fresh refrigerated produce and dairy, filtered water, bags of ice, essential supplies, wi-fi internet access, and power to charge your devices.
Here are ways you can help the co-op:

  • Shop more at the co-op! (Shop local and avoid driving time and costs.)
  • Pay your membership up to the $300 full-share level.
  • Donate to the co-op.
  • Pay-it-forward into your house charge account and wait until spring to use it (money in your bank account earning precious little interest could be helping the co-op).
  • Offer the co-op a shareholder loan for larger amounts.
  • Encourage others to join.                               

We rely upon our members to support the co-op. Funding for this generator proposal will help the co-op support the community. Thanks.
Rick Beach
CFO/ Treasurer

New at the Co-op


Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Pie Crust Mix, 16 OZ. ~ $4.98

Aleia Gluten Free Stuffing, 10 OZ ~  $6.49

Pukka Match Mint Green Tea, 20 Bag ~ $6.49

Oatly Full Fat Oat Milk, 64 OZ. ~ $5.49

Sale Items

Lightlife Tempeh, 8 OZ. ~ $3.69 (.50 off)  
**product included in this month’s featured recipe!**

Equal Exchange Fair Trade Organic English Breakfast Tea, 20 Bag ~ $5.50 (.69 off)

Choice Organic Premium Japanese Green Tea, 20 Bag ~ $5.50 (.69 off)

Pascha Sugar Free Dark Chocolate, 2.82 OZ. ~ $4.49 (.80 off)

Back to Nature Fudge Mint Cookies, 6.4 OZ. ~ $6.79 (.70 off) 

Co-op Holiday Hours

For the holidays, the co-op will be open our regular hours (7-7 normally and 8-6 Sundays). We will close early at 4 pm on Christmas eve (12/24) and New Year’s eve (12/31) and close all day for Christmas Day (12/25). 


Upcoming Events

12/6~ Member Appreciation Day!
Members save even more when they shop on the first Friday of the month!

12/17 ~ Monthly Board Meeting
3pm, Tuesday. Monthly board meeting at the RCMS Staff Room in Point Arena.

12/19 ~ Third Thursday Poetry & Jazz
7:30-10:30pm, Thursday. Open Mic Solstice Reading and holiday party. See article below for more info.

1/3 ~ Member Appreciation Day!
Members save even more when they shop on the first Friday of the month!


Holiday Turkeys & Meals

Look for pre-order sheets at the cash registers. Dates will be finalized with our suppliers soon. Order natural turkeys, organic turkeys, hams, and possibly other meats. Let us know what produce and other fixings we can stock for your holiday meals. Caution: our supplier sold out of natural turkeys well before the deadline for Thanksgiving Turkeys, so sign up early!

Chesapeake Tempeh Cakes        

Great for holiday gatherings, as an appetizer, or with a side salad as a light lunch. These cakes are so savory and delicious they’re sure to become a recipe that you revisit often! 

Makes 10 cakes

Make ahead: Make the entire mixture and the remoulade the night before. In the morning, form into cakes and pan fry.

For the cakes:

  • 8 ounces tempeh (use the nori tempeh if you can find it, but plain soy tempeh is fine, too)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 tablespoons Vegenaisse
  • 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard (stone ground Dijon works, too)
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup very finely chopped red bell pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspooon salt
  • fresh black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs, plus extra for dredging
  • Optional: 1 finely chopped nori sheet or 1 tablespoon kelp granules (if you like a little fishiness)
  • Oil for pan frying

For the remoulade:

  • 2 tablespoons Vegenaise
  • 1 tablespoon mustard  
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce
  • 2 teaspoons capers (try not to get too much brine)
  • Lemon wedges for serving

First we’re going to steam the tempeh to get the bitterness out and also to infuse some flavor with the soy sauce. Crumble the tempeh into a saucier or small pan in little bits. Add the water, soy sauce, oil and bay leaf. The tempeh won’t be fully submerged, but that’s fine. Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, let boil for 12 to 15 minutes, until most of the water has evaporated. Stir once during boiling.

Transfer contents to a mixing bowl, remove bay leaf, and mash with a fork. Let cool for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to hasten the cooling process. Make sure the tempeh is barely warm before you proceed, or the cakes may fall apart when you cook them. Add the mayo, mustard, hot sauce, vinegar, chopped bell pepper, spices salt and pepper, and mix well. Add the bread crumbs and nori and use your hands to incorporate.

Once you are ready to form the cakes, preheat a thin layer of oil in a heavy bottomed non-stick skillet (cast iron is great) over medium heat. Pour a few tablespoons of panko into a bowl. Scoop a little less than 1/4 cup batter into your hands and form into a ball. Flatten between your palms and then roll the sides gently with your hands cupped to smooth them. You should have ten 2 1/2 to 3- inch patties. I do them in batches of five. Press them into the panko to lightly coat. They don’t need to be thoroughly covered, just a little bit for some texture.

Fry a batch of five cakes for 4 minutes on one side and flip when dark golden brown. Fry for 2 minutes on the other side and transfer to a paper towel or paper bag to drain. Do your second batch and in the meantime make your remoulade by mixing all the ingredients together in a bowl.

Serve with lemon wedges.

Annual Open Mic Poetry Solstice Celebration At Third Thursday Poetry Night

On Thursday, December 18, at 7:30 pm, The Third Thursday Poetry Reading Series will feature the group’s annual “Open Mic Solstice Reading & Party.” The event will take place at the Arena Market and Cafe and include live improv jazz and an open mic with improv jazz. Following tradition, there will be no featured poet this month, but instead all members of the community are encouraged to bring in extra poems and purchase food from the co-op to share if they are inspired to do so. 

Third Thursday Poetry & Jazz is supported by The Third Thursday Poetry Group, many anonymous donors, and Poets & Writers, Inc. through a grant it has received from The James Irvine Foundation.




Volunteer at Your Co-op

Contribute to our newsletter:  Send your stories, recipes, anecdotes to us and become part of this monthly publication.  And don't forget, there are many other things you can do for your co-op, so please become a volunteer.  To get involved, please email


New Members

Welcome to all our new members! If you know someone that’s not a member invite them in. Thanks for being a part of our co-op!



Board of Directors

Molly Morgan, President
Rick Beach, CFO & Treasurer
Rhonda Rumrey, Secretary
Margaret Grace
Dan Lewis
Natalie Cortese, General Manager

185 Main Street
Point Arena

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