Tomatoes the gateway "drug" to gardening... and seed saving. Amaze your community by hosting a Tomato Festival and have folks bring in tomatoes to share.
1. Host a seed saving workshop on "super easy" plants right after the tomato tasting. Things that are not eaten can be saved and the folks taking the class will get lots of hands-on experience processing tomatoes. Bring lots of canning jars and labels. (See above "Tomato Envelop Label").
2. Cut the tomatoes right on the plate. It will be easier to clean up and there will be less chance of seeds being mixed if you are saving seeds at the end.
3. Leave at least a half, preferably a whole, tomato on each plate so people can see the form and size.
4. Write on the lip of the plate important information such as variety and determinate or indeterminate. If you have lots of microclimates then you may also want to put the area where it was grown on the lip of the plate.
5. Have lots of pencils for folks to write on the rating cards. The cards help folks decide what seeds they'd like to check out for next year.
6. Ask people to only bring open-pollinated tomato varieties.
7. Bring a compost bucket for the plates and any tomatoes you can't process, such as if someone brought a hybrid tomato.
8. Make sure you have plenty of volunteers to help cut tomatoes and to clean up afterward. Many hands make for light work.
9. Have people wait until all of the tomatoes are cut before people are allowed to start sampling.
10. Before starting the sampling, give a little orientation to the reason you are doing the event, to your seed library's service, and to how to save tomatoes. It's good to have a jar that already has the mold growing on it for demonstration purposes.
11. Make resources on saving tomatoes, such as the "super easy" brochure available.