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'Iron Chef' champ Michael Symon to co-host 'Farm Aid' concert

UPI News Service, 10/01/2010 

Michael Symon is to serve as features host of the benefit concert Farm Aid 25: Growing Hope for America, organizers said Friday.

The announcement regarding Saturday's event at Miller Park in Milwaukee was made by Farm Aid and Food Network.

Symon, star of the upcoming shows "Food Feuds" and "The Next Iron Chef," will join host Tavis Smiley for the live concert broadcast on DirecTV's 101 Network, which will air at 5 p.m. CDT. The DirecTV broadcast featuring Symon and Smiley will also stream live on Farm Aid's YouTube channel.

The first chef to serve as host of Farm Aid, Symon will be joined onstage by Farm Aid board members Willie Nelson, John Mellencamp, Neil Young and Dave Matthews -- with Tim Reynolds, as well as Kenny Chesney, Norah Jones, Jason Mraz, Jeff Tweedy, Band of Horses, Jamey Johnson, Amos Lee, Robert Francis, BoDeans, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, Randy Rogers Band and The Blackwood Quartet -- organizers said.

"Chefs are helping shape the way people think about food," Carolyn Mugar, executive director of Farm Aid, said in a statement. "When chefs like Michael Symon talk about where food comes from, they help families at home learn more about family farmers and the value of seeking out foods grown on family farms. We're proud that Chef Symon will be the first chef to host Farm Aid and we look forward to building a long relationship with Food Network to help more people think critically about where their food comes from."

"I was honored to be asked to join these artists that I have admired for both their musical abilities and their commitment to family farmers," added Symon. "I hope my role at Farm Aid 25: Growing Hope for America will help to encourage chefs and cooks across America to buy their food from farmers who take such pride in the best ingredients."

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