Friday, July 04, 2014

All American, Arkansas Grown, Arkansas Made

*this post was made possible by a day spent at the P. Allen Smiths farm, sponsored by the Arkansas Department of Agriculture. They fed me lunch, gave me a t-shirt, some lip balm, and the opportunity to meet local farmers. All opinions are my own.

Happy Fourth of July friends!
Today is the day we celebrate Independence, the opportunity to make fresh starts, the freedom to work hard for our dreams, and the privilege of living a life where the choices are abundant.

To me nothing sums up the American ideal of hard work, big dreams, and go-get-em pioneer spirit, more than the life of a small farmer or small business owner, so I thought today would be the perfect day to share  a little sample of what I saw and learned about small farm farming at P. Allen Smith's farm during the Farm2Home event.

Arkansas moniker is The Natural State, because in theory we naturally produce everything a state would need to survive the apocalypse - food, water, oil, gas, wood, art, music, literature, liquor, ice cream, presidents...

Based on what I know and what I saw at Farm2Home I would say that that claim is accurate.

Arkansas Grown is a new website that highlights and organizes the information about local Farms, Farmer's Markets, Restaurants, Retailers and other Arkansas Grown and Arkansas Made services and products. The website is still new and growing, but the basic info is there and is super helpful when trying to sign up for a CSA basket or find a pick-your-own location to take the kids.

All of the farmers and retailers that were at Farm2Home (and pictured above) are listed on the their website, along with their contact info and hours of operation and crops.

I always love going to see Allen on Moss Mountain and learning about a variety of products and services, but this event was the most personal to me as Sweet Man and I hope to start a small farm of our own in the next few years. Spending the day with real life small farmers who could answer questions and give insight was such a blessing for Nathan and I. It gave us hope that our dream - with a lot of hard work - is indeed possible.

What is more American that?

Happy 4th friends!

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