This week in Colorado, the focus of the farmers has been water. 

The past two years have been very dry, and a number of farmers are barely holding on...
We met Beth Gentry at around 5:30. People were already arriving, which was a good sign. BAMCo was kind enough to provide food beforehand, and people showed up in droves. About 200 people stood in line, waiting to get some of the appetizers. 
The challenge was that our venue only sat 106, so we hurriedly put folding chairs in every place possible. The good-natured students and community members huddled together, and we probably squeezed 175, maybe more, into the cozy theater. 
Mike Callicrate and I talked about the meat industry as the film ran, and we landed upon the final language we'll use when estimating the amount of acreage that it would take to feed America through grass-based farms. 
We were lucky to have a number of repeat panelists from the previous night, Susan from Venetucci Farms, Mike, and Susan's husband Patrick. We were joined by Doug and Kim, as well as Beth, with Piper moderating the discussion. 
Doug spoke slowly, and with the emotional intensity of a man who feels and believes strongly in every word spoken. We're going to have to make some choices. Do we want golf courses and green lawns, or do we want food? He said, pausing sometimes for seconds at a time between words. 
Susan continued her persistent promotion of AVOG, Arkansas Valley Organic Growers, a woman completely dedicated to furthering local agriculture in the Colorado Springs region. 
There was a lot of emotional and intense energy in the room, perhaps because it was so filled with people, people reflecting upon change. Mike talked about the potential to start a full on farmers market downtown, providing the volume that can rise up and meet the demand that's growing with each day.
There were questions about water, about GMOs, about extending growing seasons through greenhouses. People asked about what they could do, and we mentioned the importance of starting school gardens, of growing food, or spending money with farmers who depend on local support for their entire existence. 
For the second night in a row, our conversation extended for an hour, a length that seemed to zip by, because of the level of engagement in the room. The food movement in Colorado Springs is alive and well. 
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