Blog Archive

Monday, May 11, 2009

Bounty of the Barrens Market -- More than a Market

Please forgive me while we talk for a minute about something that is not directly related to the EPB – Sustainable Glasgow and the upcoming Bounty of the Barrens Market currently being planned by Sustainable Glasgow. One of our missions at the EPB has always been to act as a catalyst for economic development and the creation of a steadily improving lifestyle and standard of living in our community. We feel, with all our heart, that the mission of Sustainable Glasgow is well in line with our mission and we really hope you will prove our efforts worthwhile by supporting the market when it opens later this month on Saturday, May 30. This is an exciting time for all the volunteers and vendors involved. One thing is certain: we are not going to be short on area farmers who want to sell food to area eaters!

We are amazed that the market concept we introduced in January has already attracted more than twenty-five vendors who plan to spend their Saturday mornings in the parking lot behind BB&T Bank (which has ever so graciously provided a place for the community to come together) throughout the summer. They will bring the fresh produce that they have lovingly and laboriously planned, planted, tended, and harvested for us.

Now our focus turns toward convincing you, the local eater, to vote for the success of these local farmers by spending your food dollars with them rather than one of the big-box food retailers (you know who). Buckets of money leave our community through these corporate portals.

A visit to the Bounty of the Barrens Market will be nothing like a trip to any conventional grocery store. There will be music by local musicians and cooking demonstrations by local chefs. There will be cheese from Kenny’s Country Cheese and fruits from Jackson’s Orchard and locally grown and harvested meats, eggs, and vegetables from dozens of other residents of our region, the Barrens. But the market will be even more than a festive place to purchase fresh and healthy foods – it is a first step toward a diversified and truly sustainable local economy.

Sustainable Glasgow, Inc. has more ideas and plans. It is our intention to revitalize our local economy and reinvent our community, transforming a good community into a great place that does not have to convince folks to visit us or locate here - a place that creates its own gravity by providing a desirable lifestyle which a sustainable economy creates. The Bounty of the Barrens Market will connect grower and consumer and act as our opening gambit in the process of community reconciliation which, we hope, will ultimately lead us back to a connection with each other and our land.

We want the market to act as a community convener, a community builder and a preserver and restorer of relationships. So, please make plans to come and commune with your neighbors each Saturday throughout the summer; but please do not think of the market as simplistic, for it certainly is not. In my day job we deal with very complicated technology and often feel that we are providing Glasgow with products which are unparalleled in our republic, but deep down we know that our technology is stone-age compared to the products you will find at the market. Perhaps Paul Hawken put it all into perspective when he concluded: “We humans have yet to create anything that is as complex and well-designed as the interactions of the microorganisms in a cubic foot of rich soil.” Come see us at the Bounty of the Barrens Market and see what the natural technology of our region has wrought.


Jay Fowler said...

Billy Ray,
I totally agree with you. I really believe more people should show up to support our local farmers. Not only are we getting wholesome locally grown products, but some really outstanding vendors as well. If people in the local area haven't tried Kenny Cheese, or Jackson's Orchard products they are missing out! More involvement would be great by putting money back into our local economy, plus the market could lure more people to spend money in our area if words get out that we have an awesome market.
My wife and I plan to be there quite a bit. I hope to see more residents of Glasgow come out, as well as people from out of town.