Living in bush Alaska, Graham saw first-hand the significance of local food. As if a massive plane or barge ride from the lower 48 wasn’t long enough, another trip was required to get goods all the way out to the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta where Bethel stood. From there, yet another plane ride was necessary to get goods to another hub community. And would you believe it, sometimes another plane ride from that community to another community. All the while, the beautiful subsistence lifestyle that had sustained the Yupik people in the area for so long was being degraded by cultural changes, over-development, resource extraction, and commercial fishing. A sad scene to say the least. Luckily, at the same time, Graham had begun volunteering at an incredible farm that had been pumping out incredible amounts of food out the tundra in which Bethel sat upon. It was at this time that he started to understand the energy it took to get food to this far corner of the globe, the abundance that can be cultivated from this so called “frozen tundra”, and that the best thing he can do for his and the public’s health, was to grow his own food.
Mindy, who had her own reservations about the way she was living, working for a green energy company in Florida, knew there was a better way, and began the road trip with her mom, seeking out and researching intentional communities around the country.
Sharing a love of Bluegrass music, a giant marshmallow landed between the two (ask them the sub-story here) and their kindred paths were solidified forever. They began leasing some property off-grid 14 miles outside of Talkeetna, followed by meeting Esther and the property of their dreams. So their journey began.