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Cheeseburger in Paradise

What do get when you mix a rancher, a diner, and a singer? Aside from what I’m sure could be a pretty terrible punch line, they were all at the Community Market in Anaconda this past Tuesday. While I’m still working on the punchline, I will say that the 3 made for a very interesting chain of burger events!

As I made my way around the market Heggelund Ranch Meats immediately caught my eye, after all - we’re all things #MTBurgerQuest right now. I talked with Tom and Adam Heggelund about their products, particularly their beef. They were there selling direct to market patrons, and had everything from steaks, bulk burger and burger patties to pork and lamb. All of their products are locally grown and processed. Of course, one of the questions I had to ask was, “Do you sell your meat to any local markets or restaurants?” Though working on getting in to more establishments,

one of the local places they do sell to is Pop’s Place Diner.

After chatting with the Heggelunds, my next stop had to be the food tent where Pop’s Place Diner happened to be grilling up fresh eats (and meats). Not only were they cooking up sliders with Heggelund beef, they also made some kebobs and gyros using Heggelund lamb. Though new to Anaconda, it’s safe to say that Pop’s Place is already beloved by the community. I’d like to think that’s partially because they understand the importance of supporting local food producers.

Pop’s Place says it best, “We appreciate so much, being able to buy from our neighbors - to serve our neighbors. Tom’s ranch does things the right way and we feel so pleased knowing the source of what we are serving our patrons in this community.”

Well said! Supporting local food producers is at the heart of the “Locavore” or local food movement. Eating local is important for a number of reasons. Buying from local food producers helps keep local farms thriving, and spurs small town economies by creating jobs and building stronger connections within the community.

So, where does the singer come in? As I sat and enjoyed the delicious sliders, local musician John Montoya began singing his version of Jimmy Buffet’s, Cheeseburger in Paradise! Indeed, I was in paradise.

What do you get when you mix a rancher, a diner, and a singer? You get a #MTBurgerQuest win!

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