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Originally published: 2014-05-01 16:04:52
Last modified: 2014-05-01 16:07:21

FARM Cafe celebrates start of third year

FARM Cafe will begin its third year of "feeding all regardless of means" with a celebration at the Cafe from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. Saturday, May 3. The celebration will feature a special menu, live music, a raffle for the FARM Cafe garden spot and recognition for volunteers, sponsors, staff, and others who have helped to fulfill the mission of FARM Cafe since its inception over two years ago. All are welcome to come and take part in the celebration and enjoy a meal as the Cafe kicks off another year and initiates seasonal Saturday operating hours.

"With the success of the Real. Good. Party! event on April 4 where nearly $12,000 was raised to support the mission of FARM Cafe, we are confident that we'll be able to serve another year of helping to alleviate hunger in the High Country." Renee Boughman, Executive Chef at FARM Cafe said.

The Cafe utilizes a unique business model where anyone who wants a meal can get one regardless of their ability to pay. Those who cannot pay may volunteer an hour of their time in exchange for a meal or simply receive the meal with no questions asked. For those who are able to pay there is a suggested donation range depending on the plate size and portion. Those donating more than the suggested amount support the cafe in its mission to feed individuals experiencing food insecurity. 

"We will always depend on the support of donors, sponsors, and volunteers for this mission model to work," said Boughman, "In the past two years we have fed over 70,000 meals to people of which about 20 percent were either donated or significantly subsidized."

FARM Cafe depends on many volunteers to operate the cafe but it also employs four staff persons who operate the Cafe, the garden spot and make possible the success of its mission. In addition to Boughman, FARM Cafe employs Angela Rockwell who serves as General Manager, Amanda Merritt who serves as Volunteer Coordinator, and Susan Owen who serves as Garden Manager.

"The staff of the Cafe and the Garden are such wonderful people who realize that there is so much more to the cafe than simply feeding people. Each of the staff do so much to create the spirit of the cafe where everyone feels welcome, well fed, and part of a special community. There is a lot of love and passion for people in every meal," said the Rev. Tommy Brown who serves on the board of directors of FARM Cafe.

FARM Cafe is open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and is located at the historic Boone Drug building on King Street in downtown Boone. It is a nonprofit, pay-what-you-can community kitchen that builds a healthy and inclusive community. It provides high quality and delicious meals produced from local sources when available, served in a restaurant where everybody eats, regardless of means. Everyone is invited to come downtown on Saturday, May 3, to celebrate the beginning of FARM Cafe's third year of Feeding All Regardless of Means.

More information on FARM Cafe, the staff, the garden spot, the One World Everybody Eats movement, and the problem of food insecurity in the High Country can be found at the website