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Green Drive Mercantile owners will sell fresh produce and local meat across from Eagle Bakery

PHOTO COURTESY OF CHERI BOWEN - Green Drive Mercantile owners Devon and Cheri Bowen will soon open The Madras Produce Barn at the corner of Southwest Third and Southwest D streets. The Madras Produce Barn will sell locally sourced produce, meat and products.

Green Drive Mercantile owner Cheri Bowen will soon be selling fresh produce and local meat from the new Madras Produce Barn across from the Eagle Bakery in Madras.

"The Produce Barn will offer quality meat and fresh products to the community while giving back to the community," Bowen said.

She is aiming to open the Madras location on Friday, Aug. 6. The barn will be open seasonally from 8 a.m. until they are sold out each Friday and Saturday.

HOLLY SCHOLZ/MADRAS PIONEER
 - Cheri Bowen had a booth at the weekly Madras Farm-to-Table Market at Madras City Hall earlier this season.The barn will be staffed by student interns through the Central Oregon Youth Career Connect program.

"This is a great opportunity to learn about ag and teaching high school students cash register skills, communication, customer service, etcetera," Bowen said.

Bowen and her husband, Devon, own a small farm in Culver. When he is home from his shift as a firefighter and paramedic captain for Redmond Fire and Rescue, they enjoy working together on the farm with their three young sons. They have a self-serve, honor system farm store on their farm called Green Drive Mercantile and also have The Culver Produce Barn located on the corner of First Avenue and E Street in Culver.

But after getting a green light from the City of Madras for a year-long temporary use permit, they have expanded to include the new Madras Produce Barn.

They recently delivered a little red and white barn to the empty lot at the corner of Southwest Third and Southwest D streets. The back half of the barn is a walk-in cooler, and the front half is where customers can shop and pay for their goods.

"We are going for the old-fashioned, country-feel theme," Bowen said.

The business follows all Oregon Department of Agriculture rules and health regulations. They accept the $4 Farm Direct Nutrition Program vouchers for locally grown fruits and vegetables.

The Produce Barn will offer boxes of meat, fruits and vegetables. Customers can order directly from their web and social media sites and can pick it up at the Madras location.

The barn will have fresh berries, cherries, peaches and locally grown vegetables such as tomatoes, green beans and corn for bulk canning purposes. They will offer locally raised beef, pork, chicken, goat meat and whatever else they might decide to raise, such as lamb.

"We're open to the idea of connecting with other ranchers to keep The Produce Barn stocked," Bowen said.

Shoppers will also find beef jerky products, barbecue sauce and seasonings as well as farm-fresh chicken and duck eggs. Look for cream, butter, cream-on-top milk, strawberry milk and chocolate milk. There will be Central Oregon raw honey, bee pollen and honey soap as well as locally made goat milk soaps and country candles. Oregon berry jams, sauces and syrups and locally baked goods such as berry pies and bread will also be for sale at The Produce Barn. Cascade Lavender will have some products on hand, and there will be fresh flower bouquets.

Need a cool drink on a hot day? They designed a huckleberry lemonade as a fundraiser for Culver Young Life. Proceeds will help send kids to summer camp in Antelope.

"It is made with real ingredients and is delicious," Bowen said.

And this fall, be on the lookout for fresh-squeezed raw apple cider.

"Our goal is to provide fantastic customer service while bringing something unique to the table," Bowen said.

The Madras Produce Barn

Owners: Devon and Cheri Bowen

Location: The corner of Southwest Third and Southwest D streets in Madras

Seasonal hours: 8 a.m. until sold out each Friday and Saturday beginning Aug. 6

Website: localproducebarn.com

Facebook and Instagram: Green Drive Mercantile

Phone: 541-604-5980


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