This will be the last week we’ll be holding pickups at the YMCA. They’ve been wonderful hosts to us, but they’re opening back up and need their space back. I’m not sure yet where we’ll be going after this, but I do have a bunch of leads to chase over the next few days. Hopefully something will fall into place before next week.
Things don’t seem anywhere close to “back to normal” to me, but the powers that be have decided to pretend they are, and so here we are. I know you all are still wanting good clean locally grown food over that shipped in from everywhere, processed in plants that haven’t had the best safety records of late. You’ve got more options than before, which is good news. The Athens Farmers Market is holding their Saturday market once again in Bishop Park. It’s not anything like it was before, so you’ll want to read up on all the changes on their website, https://athensfarmersmarket.net. The West Broad Farmers Market is back too, holding a drive through market just like us (and using my software too, so it’ll be nice and familiar). You can join them at https://wbfm.locallygrown.net. And of course Collective Harvest is going strong over at https://www.collectiveharvestathens.com.
So, if everything doesn’t fall neatly into place for us before next week and we need to take a week or two off to re-group, you won’t have to go completely without. Many of our growers also sell at one or more of those other markets, so you’ll recognize some familiar (virtual) faces.
In the meantime, for one more week, we’ll be at the YMCA. Here are some things that we’ve all been doing that worked wonderfully while we’ve been there, and we’d like you to keep them up:
- Don’t arrive at the beginning of your pickup window if you’ve got that flexibility. The time you arrive has no bearing on what items you get, so take your time getting there and that’ll naturally spread things out a bit. Flatten the curve, if you will.
- I’m bad with faces as it is, and masks make it even harder to recognize you and even hear you when you give your name. Many of you had papers with your name written in big letters we could read through the window, and that is wonderful. If you think to do that same, it’ll make things even smoother.
- The Y’s pickup loop is a little odd, and unmanaged it can be a zoo. We don’t want you backing up into Hawthorne, so if you arrive faster than we can deliver orders, we may ask you to pull ahead into the loop and circle around.
- The folks at the Y have been holding an ongoing food drive for their pantry for members in need. If you have canned or packaged food you don’t need, feel free to bring it and we’ll give it to them.
Here are some general reminders of things that have changed from the before times:
- If you arrive by bike or on foot, or just want to park in the lot and get out of your car, we’ll have a place for you to walk up.
- We’ve still got three pickup windows, and it’s totally ok if you come later than the slot you chose
- We’re not accepting in-person payments unless absolutely necessary. We’ll have a drop box for checks or labelled envelopes of cash, but we greatly prefer Venmo payments to @athenslocallygrown or online payments through a card tied to your account. That last option has a 3% fee, and Venmo is free.
- We can not accept any recycling
- We cannot take your own bags or bins out of your car and fill them up
- If you’d like to go through your items before you leave to make sure you’ve got everything, or that we didn’t mix up people’s items, feel free to pull into the lot and have a look.
Thank you so much for your support of Athens Locally Grown, all of our growers, local food, and our rights to eat it. You all are part of what makes Athens such a great area in which to live. We’ll see you one more time on Thursday at the YMCA!