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Sunday, September 16, 2012

09/15/12- Elk's Bluff Open House

05:23:11 PM Finally, a break. I got here at about 12:30 to help with setup. I prepared with my computer, business cards, and books in the Processing Room, where I could explain the whys and hows of the greenhouse itself.
Coming up the Driveway

The overall setup is impressive. Coming down the long driveway a visitor sees a big white pavilion tent with tables and chairs. A low bandstand is ready along one wall with a white canvas backdrop. Around the garage are a couple of smaller tents, for serving food and taking entries for door prizes.

The center of it all is the barn-under-transformation. The construction is a bit behind schedule, as we've had several dry, dusty, windy days when little work could be done. They're still planning to be in operation by late October.

In the barn's entry and front room is the guest book, with a display of crafts and antiques for sale. Much of the barn has been converted to a funky antique and crafts shop.

Almost finished greenhouse
Toward the rear is the Processing Room. This fifteen by thirty space has two windows and a door that look out into the greenhouse. About one third will be where produce from the greenhouse is packed for delivery. The rest is set aside as a meeting area for organizing the greenhouse network that we envision, and for other community meetings such as Transition.

Just before 2:00, the scheduled start time, we wondered whether anyone would come. Ha! Right at 2:00 a line of five cars turned in- not related, just with the same idea. It hasn't let up since. Carol and I have traded off manning the room, explaining and elaborating. I've occasionally wandered about, taking pictures. I haven't looked at the guest book, but I wouldn't be surprised to find that over a hundred people have come through.

I've personally talked with people from several states- Iowa, Wisconsin, California, and Minnesota, and one from France. Many are thinking about building their own, but some have come representing groups such as food co-ops.

The festivities went on until about 8 pm. The band played, other musicians jammed, people kept coming through... (The short clip is of my wife, Carol Ford, and our friend Richard Handeen.)

This is the kind of community building that makes genuine Local Foods work.

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