East Austin is poised to lose one of its urban farms.
Glenn and Paula Foore announced in a newsletter today that they planned to “retire Springdale Farm and move on to the next phase of our lives with a focus on health and family.”
For the past 10 years, the Foores have run an urban farm with crops available for sale at a twice-a-week farmstand. About six years ago, they opened part of their land to chef Sonya Cote, who now runs her outdoor restaurant Eden East next to the house where chefs and home cooks alike can be found on Wednesday and Friday mornings.
Although the land has always been zoned for commercial use — the Foores first moved their landscape business there more than 26 years ago — Springdale Farm was part of the controversial effort in 2013 to revise the city’s urban farm ordinance.
Along with Boggy Creek, Rain Lily and HausBar, Springdale Farm has hosted an annual fundraiser called the East Austin Urban Farm Tour, which will continue this year, the Foores said in the email:
“These past 10 years in particular have been such an amazing journey. The food community has shown us tremendous support, and we have been so honored to be a part of this wonderful group of people,” they wrote. “The adventures were grand, to be sure: the fun times at the farm stand and the friends we’ve made, the fundraisers, the farm tours and school kids of all ages… The documentaries, the photo shoots, the supper clubs, the politicians on the porch, the celebrities on the grounds. Our daughter’s wedding, and any minute, God willing, we’ll christen the farmhouse with the birth of our first grand baby.”
Springdale Handmade, an offshoot soap and skincare business from farmstand fixture Carla Crownover, will continue to operate, with the products available online and at other retail outlets. The email to customers did not say what would happen with the Springdale Center for Urban Agriculture, a non-profit project that was a recipient of an Austin Food & Wine Alliance culinary grant.
We asked if they had plans to develop the property, rent it out to a new farmer or sell the land, but have not received additional information.