Last night was a testament to the power of community. It was also an ode to what can happen when one lets go of anger and embraces the possibilities that abound in disruptive moments in life. Three years ago our family lost 165 acres of heir property that had been in our family for over 100 years in Swainsboro, Georgia on the courthouse steps with no representative in attendance. It’s a fairly common occurrence considering the fragile nature of rural land ownership among Black families in the South. This store emerged from the powerlessness we felt in that situation.
It was at that moment that we received the paperwork detailing the loss that I decided we needed to create a way to connect what had been lost to something positive to keep us from focusing on how angry we were about the situation.
The Boxcar Grocer allows us to provide food for a community that has clearly been ignored. But it also allows us to express how important the land is to our health, our growth, our families, and to help provide a forum to communicate the value and importance of land and farming, especially at this particular moment in time.
So many beautiful faces turned up at our grand opening celebration last night. Lots of regular customers who have already come to rely on us being at the store on a daily basis to provide the food they so crave. And also lots of new people who were just shocked at the magic of it all.
Alphonzo and I were overwhelmed with emotion as we jumped from conversation to conversation and listened to words of support and encouragement. Luan Tran, our angel who believed in our vision the first time he heard about what we were trying to do, was able to share in the glory.
As for those of you who mentioned that we should have a dj on a regular basis, well, that’s one of those things Alphonzo actually proposed a year ago. I have to say…we’re really considering it. If not on a weekly basis then we definitely have to have another event…soon. DJ 4th Wurld lit up the place with such a wonderful vibe all night long to such a degree that we actually had to ask people to leave. I mean, we do have to get up this morning and run our store like a normal Tuesday:)
Thanks BOSCO , Scoutmob and Juli Vaughn for helping to make this event such a success! And thanks to all of you who braved the rain and crazy fog last night to come have a little fun and to celebrate local food. This is only the beginning…
© 2012 The Boxcar Grocer.