Greetings from the road! Here at Sol Food Mobile Farm we are just finishing up our first week of much anticipated first week of farm tours and expos around North Carolina. For the next six months, we will be traveling around the country building community gardens and visiting local farms and markets. We will be continually updating this blog with our travel stories and photos so stay tuned for more snapshots soon.
Starting this past Thursday, June 21, we left Durham, NC in the late evening and headed west across our great state. Our departure was bittersweet for us as a crew, after saying goodbyes to dear family and friends until our return in mid December. But shortly after getting on Highway 40, we realized that our year’s worth of preparation work was finally done and we could begin to look forward to our coming adventures!
A few short hours after leaving the Triangle area, we chugged up the Green River Gorge at a wimping thirty miles per hour, over the foothills of the Black Mountains and into Hendersonville, NC. Given the time of night, we decided to take a quick rest in a nearby Ingles parking lot (the local grocery store) to await the sunrise. Thankfully, we had the generous permission of the Laurel Park Police Department to catch a few hours of sleep in a quiet corner of the lot before we were up and back to work a few hours later. With the arrival of another early morning, we quickly scooter across the street, ate a wonderful breakfast at the Dixie Diner and began the day’s work.
For the last three days since that first morning, we have focused on picking up supplies and touring a local farm in the area. We began our tour with a stop in Fairview, NC at Hickory Nut Gap Farm. Owned and operated by the Ager family, the property has been in operation since 1916. Including both wooded mountain top ridges and low bottom land pastures the farm now has hundreds of protected acres under a conservation easement with the Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy. William Hamiliton, one of the family members of HNG graciously took us around the farm and down to our bus “campsite” along the creek.
That afternoon, we hosted members of the farm community onto the bus and talked through our programming and greenhouse layout. It was a beautiful trip, and we hope to return to Hickory Nut Gap Farm one day soon. We have also added the Lord’s Acre Farm to our next round of stops for Spring 2013! We ended our stay in Faireview with one of the most beautiful firefly shows we had ever seen and the following morning we continued moving west across the NC mountains!