October already? That’s… that’s crazy. But here we are. Looks like a beautiful week ahead of us, just right for both the summer veggies hanging on in the garden and the fall crops coming in. Hopefully we can get more like this right on to frost (preferably mixed with a bit more rain — but not on Thursdays)!
Here’s something I haven’t talked about in a while… despite all of our best efforts, sometimes the things you order don’t make it into your bags come Thursday. The growers try their best, but sometimes they aren’t able to fill orders for a variety of reasons. They almost always go into the system and remove the items they can’t fill by 2pm on Thursday, so by then you should be able to look at your order on the website and get a reasonable expectation of what we’ll have ready for you when you arrive. Even then, though, things can go wrong. A grower can leave a box at home, sitting on their kitchen counter, and when we go to fill your order, an item might be missing. We mark those items off on the spot, using our little hand-held devices. I’d like to tell you as I load your car, but that’s pretty impractical most of the time. And sometimes, we mess up ourselves filling your orders and think we put everything in your bag only to find an item with your name on it at the end of the night. In that case, we take it off your order and automatically issue a refund to your account if you’ve already paid.
In any case, if you pay with Venmo, you can see your order on the website to get the total. It should be accurate when you pick up your order. The majority of you are “pre-paying” these days, though, using cards online. It’s a bit of a misnomer because even though you placed your order on Monday or Tuesday, I don’t actually run the cards until the end of the night on Thursday, after all the orders have been finalized. That way, you’re never charged for items the growers took off, or didn’t bring, or that we left out of your box. You can see exactly what you were charged for, and what the status was for every item on your order, by looking at your order history on the Your Account page. There, you can see a PDF invoice for every order you have ever placed at ALG, a line-by-line accounting for every item, and the total you were charged (or paid in person).
And if you ever have any question, please don’t hesitate to ask them of me. Just reply to any email the system sends you, and it’ll come right to me.
We are still getting new customers every week (and we love seeing new masked faces!) so for all of you here’s a quick run-down on how Thursdays go:
- Don’t arrive at the beginning of your pickup window if you’ve got that flexibility. We fill the bags alphabetically (because it’s easier on us that way), but your arrival time or last name has no bearing on what items you get. The growers fill orders based solely on the time you placed your order, so that’s all been long decided by Thursday. 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 pickup loop does have a fair bit of room, but we don’t want you backing up into Tallassee. If you arrive faster than we can deliver orders, we may ask you to pull ahead into the loop and circle around. That may mean that some people who arrived after you may get their food before you, but as I said above, that doesn’t affect at all what items you get when things run short.
- We’ve still got three pickup windows, and it’s totally ok if you come later than the slot you chose. If you come early, odds are high that we haven’t filled your bags yet and we may ask you to come back. Tallassee is a pretty drive, and I recommend taking it to the county line and back, just for the scenery.
- 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. Venmo is free, and card payments have a 3% processing fee.
- We can not accept any recycling just yet, though that may change once we get settled.
- 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 at our brand new home on Tallassee Road!
Other Area Farmers Markets
If ALG doesn’t have everything you need, please support our growers at the other markets that are now back up and running, or at their own locations. The Comerian takes online orders for Saturday pickup at the bakery here: https://www.thecomerian.com/online-ordering. 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, http://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.
All of these other markets are separate from ALG (including the Athens Farmers Market) but many growers sell at multiple markets. Please support your local farmers and food producers, where ever you’re able to do so!