August 2023 Newsletter

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The Mushroom Messenger

KCG Monthly Newsletter: August 2023

Bringing you monthly news of the Kennett Community Grocer, a growing Food Co-op committed to local food, community, and culture.

Hello to our Member-Owners and Friends!

In this edition: Volunteer Appreciation; August Co-op Box; Special Feature: mourning a community hub.
July Co-op Box Pickup


We currently have 326 Member-Owners. We are thrilled with the community engagement and will be working together with all our KCG Ambassadors to grow this number in the coming months. During June and July, we added 5 new members, some at our first KCG Social Hour at Victory Brewing Company. The event was a lot of fun and we will do it again in the early fall. Community members who replied to the invitation got a free drink and had an opportunity to meet as friends and neighbors and “hang-out” together and socialize. This is exactly the sort of “neighborliness” you will experience as shoppers in the store.


The KCG Board traditionally does not meet in July; however, our working Board Committees have been busier than ever this past month.
  • The KCG Co-op Box Team headed by Tracy Bhalla has been organizing the box contents picks for the next several months and working with fellow Member-Owners Diana Tucker of Brandywine Blooms and Jennifer Cauffman, both flower farmers who added the wonderful benefit of flower bouquets to the box pick-up day on July 29.

  • The Events Committee headed by Rachel Warren has been meeting with the Kennett Library Program Director, Joe Mulry, and together they are planning for our KCG Annual Meeting and Fall Celebration to be held at the Library on October 27 from 5:30 to 7:30 pm. All Member-Owners please mark your calendars for this important event. If you have not yet joined, please sign up so that you can come and share in the fun and get more information on the progress towards opening our cooperative grocery store!

  • The Business Advisory Committee headed by Tom Sausen is working to bring you to the physical store sooner rather than later. They have finalized a contract with Pillar Real Estate Advisors, LLC to locate a site for us. To finance this beyond the Member-Owner equity shares, we are working to identify a Capital Campaign plan and begin fundraising to pay for the lease and the store design. There will be much more on this in future newsletters.

And there’s more!
  • Our Volunteer Coordinator, Mitch Warren is putting together a Volunteer Appreciation Evening including a wine and chocolate tasting given by Estelle Tracy of 37 Chocolates. Please reach out and volunteer your time so that you can be included and honored for your work. The event will be on August 24 on the Terrace at the Kennett Library from 6:30 to 8 pm. To find out where your time and talents fit, go to or email info@kennett

A beautiful night for the KCG Table at July's Third Thursday

Become a Member-Owner when you buy a Co-op box  during one of the summer months and be entered into a raffle to win a $100 gift certificate to a local merchant. Julys lucky winner received a voucher for Victory Brewing Company. The August winner will enjoy a $100 gift certificate to Nomadic Pies.

Sunday, August 20, 12 pm: Order deadline for August KCG Co-op Box. In August, in addition to Flying Plow's glorious produce, you will receive

Thursday, August 24, 6:30 pm: Volunteer Appreciation night. Join your fellow volunteers for a wine and chocolate tasting given by Estelle Tracy of 37 Chocolates on the terrace of the new library building, 320 E. State St., Kennett Square. Ready to volunteer? Send an email to [email protected].

Saturday, August 26, 10 am-12pm: Co-op box pick up. Friends Meeting House at 125 W. Sickle Street in Kennett Square
Pre-Order Your Co-op Box

We often read these days about chain stores and family-owned grocery stores that close leaving devoted and frequent shoppers without an important asset to their daily life. Historically, the good news is that community-owned grocery co-ops are much less likely to suffer this same fate.

What we don’t always appreciate when we hear of a grocery store leaving is how it affects the spirit and identity of an entire neighborhood or community. One recent story that stands out is the demise of Eddie’s Grocery Store in a neighborhood of Baltimore known as Mount Vernon. Home to 5,000+ people of moderate income, both individuals and families, Mount Vernon is the cultural district of Baltimore. On Eager Street, Eddie’s stood for decades as a local grocery store, a community hub, and a place where people, especially those without cars, could shop daily for the ingredients of their meals or get homemade prepared food if they were unable or did not want to cook. Fresh local produce, a bakery, a great deli and a butcher section for meats made this special store full-service.

On July 16, many would be daily shoppers stood outside the door at Eddie’s reading the incredible sign which said, “Closed Permanently.”  Patrons and neighbors were talking to each other and could not believe what they were reading. One man said that the atmosphere felt like a funeral, and all mourned this loss, talking about its personal impact. Most people in the crowd were shocked, sad, and wondering where they would now go to experience neighborly community and feel safe shopping for their food. The nearest store is a not-very-walkable mile and a half away in a much less safe and friendly area than Mount Vernon. Folks instantly lost an important icon of community spirit and a resource they counted on. A place where more than a few of the shoppers visited daily for the past several decades.

Community engagement or spirit only happens if we have the will to build it. A food Co-op, a Library, an organization like Kennett Collaborative are all important parts of making an area a true community. KCG Member-Owners are working hard in collaboration with all these entities and seeking input from all of you to make this community engagement come alive. Please contribute to this by joining, buying that equity share, and supporting this great, growing community.

Copyright © 2023 Kennett Community Grocer, All rights reserved.

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