In the coming weeks you will notice a lot of changes around here. We have been taking stock, making sense of all the we have learned over the last year, and making the appropriate modifications to be able to steer Boxcar in the direction it needs to be a more useful part of the community as well as a more powerful force for the future of food. Things on the floor are slowing down at the moment so we can push forward with our mission 100%. Please be patient with us.
When we opened the store, we had no idea it would resonate with people the way it has. Truth be told, Alphonzo and I thought we would be back in California at this point, running the store from afar and letting us go on with the merry cheer of Bay Area living. Nothing could be farther from that naïve hallucination. We have since both hunkered down in Atlanta for the long haul. I recently rented a full on house for the first time in my adult life and have been doing what I can to make the nearly hundred-year-old landmark feel like my own home while learning the history of John Wesley Dobbs, the man who grew a glorious family here.
We face a huge challenge in helping to transform the food system and it can only be achieved through laser-like focus and by rooting into Atlanta in every way we can.
We believe wholeheartedly that Atlanta is ground zero for the future of food for all communities. What exists here from a foundational standpoint that resonates with multiple communities and is visible in the spectrum of its leadership is stronger than anywhere I have been before.
The urban farming community here is strong and powerful from a resource perspective but also from an educational perspective to enable an entire generation to shift its patterns but also to train an entirely new generation from the ground up. Boxcar has been able to learn from these farms. Rashid Nuri, Bobby Wilson, Reverend Richard Bright…these elders in our community contain the knowledge we need to share to keep us all alive. Eugene Cooke and Cashawn Myers work as emissaries and leaders in their own right, shepherding in the younger generation and protecting the land that provides so much. We have worked closely with each of these men over the last year.
We have listened, we have learned, we have grown.
We have a come a long way but we still have a ways to go. Five years ago we never thought we’d be on the frontlines leading the charge for healthy food in our communities. But, then again, we’ve been primed for this type of leadership our whole lives. The leaders in our family have taught us much about patience. Our parents, as well as their brothers and sisters – Dr. Richard Price, A.J. Price, Johnetta Cross Brazzell –and a host of other close family like our cousin Dr. Lillian Beard and uncle Dr. Frank Bryant nurtured our education and as well as our souls. They taught us the honor in civic engagement and the roots of our history. The result of their attention and their example lay in the bedrock of the Boxcar Grocer on Peters Street.
The seeds have been planted. The ground tended. Now it is time for the growing.
© 2012 The Boxcar Grocer.