My girls and I will finally get to experience some winter! YAY! (for those of you who are currently in the endless winter right now, I understand that this is not funny. At. All.)
There’s some other stuff going on though too…. Let me tell you about the folks I’m meeting with on this upcoming trip:
First of all, I’m meeting with Director of Small Business Development over at Blackhawk College. He’s the guy who will hopefully poke holes in my over-exuberance and ask me the right questions and help to find the answers to make sure that this business will sustain. This is a FANTASTIC thing. The store is going to open, and needs to open the right way. In a way that works for the community, and that will be able to be sustained. If this store could run on unicorns and rainbows – I would have it IN.THE.BAG. But it can’t. So to make sure, I’m working with this guy.
The Bank! Again – the right people to make all of this real. I’m really looking forward to the bank visit.
A guy from Western Illinois who works with small towns and…. Grocery Stores!
A fabulous person from the Davenport Grocery and Farmer’s Market (have you been here? Go there.)
Plus, I’m working with a gal from The Henry County Economic Development Center….
And another superstar from The Sustainable Business Center over in Galesburg…
Also, a visit with one of my favorite farmers…. Sarah Hahn of Beagle Creek Farms
It turns out that small business, especially food providing businesses, to rural communities… is a big deal. And that lots of people are talking about it.
How can more food, better food get to small towns?
I knew when I first thought about opening the store that it just made sense in my head that Woodhull should have a fresh food market, and frankly, that didn’t seem all that *exciting!* or *ground-breaking*…. What I didn’t know, was that this is a HUGE problem. Turns out it that a lot of places are struggling. I sort of wish I could say Woodhull is alone in their circumstance… But it’s not.
Which is scary and sad.
It’s far from the end though. Making The Butter Churn happen, could mean more than just a benefit for Woodhull. Showing how a small community can sustain a store that sells local food, bulk food, and fresh food… May just be a model other communities can use. And it’s interesting… The food model for grocery stores. It’s gotten really skewed the last 30 years or so.
I can’t wait for this trip.
I can’t wait to see my G’ma (she’s been sick. UGH.)
I can’t wait to celebrate my daughter’s 11th birthday with our family and friends.
I can’t wait to see you.