Last night, the Milkman, along with his parents, went to a town meeting to discuss a distillery potentially coming to our area. Now, if you aren't familiar with Kentucky....we have a whole lot of bourbon. The central part of the state if full of amazing distilleries and we even have a Bourbon Trail (which I have been on.)
Since we had to sell our cows our farm has continued to look for more opportunities to help our place thrive in such a difficult environment. One of the ways we saw to do that was through potentially growing grains for the new distillery.
We imagined building a relationship with the owner and the master distiller that would enable us to make corn, rye, wheat, etc. for the distillery and then, if they ever wanted to try something new, we would be some of the first farmers they talked with.
The owner of Rabbit Hole Distillery rolled out the red carpet for the residents of our small town community. I wasn't able to attend the private tour due to work obligations, but they had my whole family taking a taste of bourbon....which is impressive, since the Milkman is more of a beer man.
Last night was the first obstacle for the distillery. They needed to go before our Board of Adjustments and file for a conditional use permit for the land they intended to purchase.
Things didn't go well.
Now, at the lively age of 30, I am not great at change. I love history, I love the way things used to be, and I love the idea of simpler times. This year as taught me that change never stops and unless you are down for the ride, then you will be left behind and suffer for it.
I have lost a job, lost a future we thought was untouchable, and lost some of my favorite cows. I was baptized by change this year.
So, I get it....residents of Smithfield, Ky, I get it. Change can be hard and it can knock you off your feet, but think about what it could give you.
Think about the opportunities this county could have had...but even more than that, think about the farmers that surround you who could have continued the farm with an opportunity like that.
Now, I guess we will never know. Rabbit Hole decided to withdraw their application after a public meeting last night. When the Milkman came in and shared what Rabbit Hole had to say, "We don't want to be in a place where our neighbors don't like us," I wish I could say I was surprised.
Really, Henry County? When did we become a place where new businesses don't feel welcome?