Big things have been happening at the Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture (CCUA) and the Columbia Farmer Market pavilion.
The CCUA began with humble beginnings and an all-volunteer staff. They now have 22 full-time employees. More than 3,000 people attended this fall’s 14th annual Harvest Hootenanny, where they enjoyed a home-grown meal from Columbia Area Career Center high school students. Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture co-founder and development director Adam Saunders tells 939 the Eagle that those students were the real heroes of the show.
“They get a farm to table experience preparing the foods, serving it, doing the dishes. And all of the food that we served was either grown on our urban farm here in town or sourced from farmers here in mid-Missouri,” Saunders says.
He says the meal was nutritious, adding that the poultry was raised by Columbia farmers.
“We had big salad, greens and peppers and carrots and onions from the farm. And country neighbors raised the chickens. The high school students actually processed the chickens at the high school,” says Saunders.
There was more positive news this weekend, as a ribbon-cutting ceremony was held for the expansion of the MU Health Care pavilion. All of the vendors and customers of the popular Columbia Farmers Market are now under one roof, with the expansion. Columbia Parks and Recreation says the pavilion’s expansion has been completed by Columbia-based Reinhardt Construction Company.
Another new projects in the works is an 11,000 square foot multipurpose building.
Mr. Saunders also credits Central Bank of Boone County, saying they’ve been with the CCUA from day one and have been responsive to their needs as they’ve grown.