Sunsets West Co-op
Clallam Bay, WA
Our Co-op has a ‘store’ garden in the school grounds, where a wonderful couple grows veggies every summer for our Co-op. They attract volunteers who want to learn the ‘how-to’ on gardening in a short summer season. We work collaboratively with the school on this program and share the space with the Special Education Class who make flower baskets and grow some food as well.
We have our own chicken ‘farm’ for eggs, and three other folk in our community sell us their eggs from their free-range chickens.
We have sponsored two other co-op startups with offers of equipment, but neither have made it through to a store. We are patient but will keep on working toward a sister Co-op in our area.
Support Local Businesses
Our members are motivated by our Mission Statement which states that we are working toward community development and that we support local businesses to begin making product or growing food for local sourcing. We have 54 local folk supplying product to our Co-op at this time.
We are always involved in community sourcing for infrastructure and equipment additions. We have a ‘State of the Onion’ sign on our Co-op that encourages donations to our particular cause. It is usually refrigeration as we have been in business now for 10 years and are still working toward our first round of commercial refrigeration! We have made no big jumps into the credit industry, just grass roots growth for sustainable progress. Small communities working together to form economic strength and sustainability. We are open to all cultures and have a very international community here.
We are hosts for a large multicultural travelling population on the northwest points of the continental US.
We host music jam sessions open to anyone travelling or local every week. At times we have up to 13 professionals in our Eatery, (the eatery only seats 24 folk). They came equipped with hammered dulcimer, violin, guitars, mandolin, didgeridoo, Irish Penny whistle, squeeze box from the 1920’s, piano, drum, voice and an Adobo. Music brings life to a community, keeping it live is the way to go!
Ballroom Dance Classes
We teach ballroom dance classes in the name of the Co-op ever second week .
We have a social area, almost as big as the store, where we serve health conscience meals, have free Wifi, social area, a record player, piano, tea and coffee bar. Our tea sales of hot brewed loose leaf tea are now out selling coffee, who’d a thought! Our goal is community interaction, productivity and happiness.
We share the surplus produce in summer with the food bank.
We also have classes on Wild foraging, as we live in a nutrient rich wilderness, by the Pacific Ocean and the Salish Sea. We have traditional cooking classes by a local Doctor and wild foraging, by our local Pharmacist. She collects and prepares tastings and information for the class.
We loan our popcorn machine to events that need it.
We represent on the County Planning Commission because we are a pioneer of Co-op Food development in our County.
We represented at our local Tribe, the Makah Tribe as a support for Community Garden development along with other representatives of WSU and Master Gardeners.
We are on the Advisory Board for the Peninsula College Bakery at the Clallam Bay Correction Center.