Be a Basketcase: Join Utility Research Garden's CSA Program
I love grocery shopping...if there's no one else in the store. Picking out produce can be particularly hectic if you're picky, like I am. Worse, it's often a huge let-down to find only chemical-laden, rock-hard tomatoes or ragged-looking beets with the stems and leaves shamelessly cut off.
That's where CSAs come in handy. A CSA is a Community Supported Agriculture program in which a group of people pre-pays a farmer at the beginning of the season, then gets deliveries of fresh, seasonal produce each week. You don't have to worry about picking the best vegetables; the farmer does that for you. And you never have to worry whether your produce is in season or saturated with chemicals.
"[Cater] is starting a program where you sign up and he will bring you a basket a week of veggies for 14 weeks," said Repass. "Every week, he's going to park a small trailer at Black Hole Coffee House for an evening and you can pick the veggies up there."
It's even easier than a farmer's market.
This BasketCase season started on October 19, but it's not too late to join. You'll likely be able to pay a pro-rated amount, and you'll be able to get a shipment of farm-fresh veggies from Cater each week for the next three-and-a-half months.
The cost is $30 a week, which works out to $4 a day or $420 for the entire season. You can split that $420 cost in two, as long as you pay the remainder by November 23. Pickup at Black Hole -- which is also owned by Repass -- will take place from 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday evenings to 8:30 a.m. Thursday mornings, so you certainly have a wide window of time. Baskets of produce not picked up each week will be donated, but who wouldn't pick up their veggies?
If this sounds like a steal, that's because it is. And if a basket of produce is too much for you, consider splitting your share with a friend, neighbor or officemate.
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