Downtown businesses seek to raise money for food hub

Three downtown Marion businesses will do their part to raise money for the Foothills Food Hub.

When it is ready, the Foothills Food Hub will be a place that could address the problem of food insecurity in our community, support healthier eating and help farmers across the region with getting more of their fresh foods on people’s tables.

To help this become a reality, three downtown businesses are stepping forward with special fund-raising events.

This Friday, Mountain Marquee will partner with the project by holding a food drive. During the 7 p.m. movie showing on Friday, you can bring three non-perishable food items in exchange for a ticket to the film “The Biggest Little Farm.” The movie theater at 31 W. Court St. will accept donations to raise money for families in need and will donate a portion of all ticket sales. Also, anyone in need of food can come pick up a box for free, while supplies last, according to a flier for the event.

And on Thursday, June 20, McDowell Local at 84 S. Main St. will donate 10% of its profits from lunch and dinner to support the Foothills Food Hub. On the same day, Mica Town Brewing at 25 Brown Drive has committed donating 10% of its sales to the food hub. So you can have a craft beer at Mica Town and support the hub and the McDowell Local Food Advisory Council, according to a flier for the event.

“The business community has, once again, been incredibly supportive of the Foothills Food Hub,” said Project Developer Heather Edwards.

Earlier this spring, Spillway Bridge & Co. and Fat Boys Burritos supported the effort by donating a percentage of their sales. Caleb Parker, owner of Fat Boys, has been a great partner by displaying banners in support of the food hub and other food work in McDowell County, according to Edwards.

“Our local businesses continue to be amazing partners and always eager to offer support,” she said. “I am so incredibly grateful for all of them.”

The Foothills Food Hub will be located within a 9,000-square-foot section at the new home for Nebo Crossing at 263 Barnes Road. As part of this, Nebo Crossing is partnering with the McDowell Local Food Advisory Council by donating the 9,000-square-foot space within its new location for the Foothills Food Hub. This is being done under a 15-year lease with the church.

When it is complete, the hub will have a food pantry storage and packing; a wash line, cold storage and distribution facility for produce; a teaching kitchen for cooking and other classes; and a commercial kitchen for meal preparation, value added processing and food entrepreneur development. It will be there for restaurant owners who wish to become more of the farm-to-table movement and local churches providing food for the hungry in our community. Through the hub, small business owners will have a place to make their food products. It won’t be available to just farmers and food-related business owners from McDowell County but to others across the region as well. The hub will have refrigerators, freezers and other equipment needed for the storage of food. It will be a central place where local pantries and ministries can get food items from MANNA FoodBank in Asheville, according to Edwards.

For more information, visit the Facebook page for the Foothills Food Hub at https://www.facebook.com/Foothills-Food-Hub-224883998461855/?epa=SEARCH_BOX

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