Since late March, Michael Stratton, his wife, Amanda, and a small, hardworking steering committee have managed to transform a 4,000-square-foot grassy field near Fairview Road into 15 neat garden beds, which in mid-April were already speckled with green sprouts of onions, potatoes, kale, chard and more. The group plans to donate the produce to food pantries and neighbors in need due to COVID-19.
A local farm has launched plans to turn a vacant lot on Fairview Road into a market and café, bringing much-needed food access and a social hub to one of Asheville’s food deserts.
With a total seating capacity of about 160, the combination restaurant and brewery adds another new player to the growing Sweeten Creek Road beer scene.
Despite efforts to tweak the store model and cut costs, new competition in the past year from national brands like Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods made it nearly impossible for Katuah Market to compete, says owner John Swann.
From the Get It! Guide: It was midwinter of 2012, and most Asheville residents hadn’t yet turned their thoughts to ripe tomatoes and summer squash. But Essie Silvers and a handful of her neighbors had a mission to bring a farmers market to their food-insecure East Asheville community.
Residents of the East Asheville community have voiced concerns about the proposed development, which would include more than 300 rental units in 5- and 6-story buildings with 2 percent of the project allotted to retail space. Members of the Oakley Community Association have met several times since early December to discuss the proposal.
People in the Oakley community are raising concerns about a new 300-plus-unit apartment complex planned for the East Asheville neighborhood, expressing worries about everything from potential traffic and safety issues to the fact that only 10 of the development’s planned residential units — which are nearly all rental properties — are designated as affordable housing.
Downtown Asheville’s culinary offerings are certainly no secret, and West Asheville, with its ceaseless onslaught of restaurant openings, is clearly booming as a foodie mecca. But what about points east? Although it is not widely considered to be a dining destination, East Asheville has its own sampling of fun eateries and delicious dishes.
A celebration of locally grown food and neighborhood relationships, the Oakley Farmers Market and the adjacent Oakley Community Garden are giving a much-needed boost to a predominantly low-wealth community that the U.S. Department of Agriculture considers a food desert. But what brought them all together was as simple as a sign.