On a recent trip through Lexington, I had a nice visit with Kendall (Kenny) Strickland, whose Instagram account, @kenny_fromtheblock, I’ve followed for several years.
Kenny owns Strickland Pride Produce and can be found most days just down the street from the Oglethorpe County courthouse, selling seasonal vegetables and fruit, as well as preserves and meat, from his own stock and from producers all over the region. A proud graduate of Florida A&M University, he represents the best and brightest of our young people today, keeping the tradition of truck farming fresh and relevant through social media and online updates, while also managing his own farm property nearby. He’s also an advocate for historically black colleges and universities.
The number of young farmers and African-American farmers has been on the decline for decades. The most recent agriculture census counts just over 2800 African-American farmers in Georgia, which indicates an obviously vanishing way of life. To understand this change, consider that in 1934 Liberty County alone had 834 African-American owned farms totaling 33,000 acres.
A business like Strickland Pride does more than provide local and regional produce. It fosters a sense of community in a small downtown and gives people a reason to be there.
A sign out front lets customers know what products are available at any given time.
Kenny’s enthusiasm for this hard work is really inspiring and he seems to never slow down.
He’s just finished a “melon run” to South Georgia and should have plenty of watermelons and cantaloupes available, just in time for Independence Day.
Stop by and see him when in Lexington.
He might even have some of that good Hughes’ Sorghum Syrup from Young Harris.
He’s a really nice guy and his selection will not disappoint.