Thursday, June 5, 2008

Resources for the travelling locavore

In planning for an upcoming vacation I wanted to find food bloggers in the places we'll be travelling and staying. I was surprised to find that not every town's bloggers are as likely as Cincinnati's to link to one another in blogrolls so that when you've found one, you can find dozens. But I did find a couple of resources to help.

Placeblogger is a search engine that allows bloggers who focus on certain locations to register their blogs. Then when travellers (or just anyone interested in that place) want information about that location, they can easily find blogs about it. I was searching for bloggers in Chicago, Salt Lake City and San Francisco recently and found a few food bloggers in each place who were happy to respond to questions in their comments sections about their areas' local farmers' markets and restaurants that source locally.

As an aside, if you have a placeblog -- a blog that's primarily about a single place -- it's a great way to allow folks from out of town to easily find your blog when they visit to learn what's going on, access restaurant reviews, etc. I've registered CincinnatiLocavore there, and I see that Building Cincinnati (Kevin LeMaster has even been profiled on the site), Cincinnati Beacon, Cincinnati Blog, Make Cincinnati Weird!, and View from Cincinnati are also registered.

Plus, I like their description of their mission:

[Placeblogs] are about the lived experience of a place. That experience may be news, or it may simply be about that part of our lives that isn't news but creates the texture of our daily lives: our commute, where we eat, conversations with our neighbors, the irritations and delights of living in a particular place among particular people. However, when news happens in a community, placeblogs often cover those events in unique and nontraditional ways, and provide a community watercooler to discuss those events.

Placeblogs spring from a fiercely non-generic America that's not about big-box retailers or the type of polarizing discussion about politics, culture, and the economy that's the product of journalism that happens at the 30,000 foot level. Often, they are a delightful and vivid look at cities, towns, and neighborhoods from an insider's point of view.
I also found, to which bloggers not only must submit their blogs but also must follow certain rules in tagging their posts to get the posts picked up. Of the two, Placeblogger is more focussed on blogs and also includes other information. Both worth checking out if you're travelling and want to get your local on.

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