The locally grown food and food products movement is gaining ground in Channahon.
The commercial kitchen space, “The Hive Creative Kitchen,” just opened at 25520 S. Pheasant Lane. Channahon residents and owners Craig and Jen Parshall make the space available for anyone with a food manager protection certificate to rent.
Jen Parshall said a team of caterers rents space there now on Wednesdays. She will be making her honey butter and honey-cinnamon applesauce there, as well, using honey from her beehives when she gets her license.
The Parshalls and the village of Channahon also are working on bringing a farmers market to town. Jen Parshall hopes her customers might be able to sell their products there Saturday mornings.
Other local growers could also sell their produce at the market. The Village Board this week approved supporting the establishment of a farmer's market. One way will be to apply for funding from the Illinois Rural Reverse Funding Fair, which could help resource funding and assistance.
“I, for one, would love having a farmers market here again,” Channahon Village President Missey Moorman Schumacher said.
The board was thinking about more than summer produce at Monday’s meeting. Approval was given to buy a brine maker that will be used to help make roadways safer for driving during snow and ice storms.
Public Works Director Edward Dolezal said the village has been using a homemade system to make the brine, which is a salt and water mixture.
The process the public works department uses to make brine now requires a lot of labor, he said, both to operate and maintain. The new system is automated.
Dolezal said using a wet salt solution is more efficient and reduces the amount of chlorides released into the environment. The brine solution also can be applied to roads before predicted ice and snowfall to allow better traction during a storm.
Also this week, Village Administrator Thomas Durkin told trustees a 3-year contract with Dynegy Energy was just approved through an aggregation group with the Will County Governmental League, with the goal of saving residents and small businesses dollars they pay for electricity.
Channahon has been a member of the utility aggregation group since 2012, and aggregation members as a whole, Durkin said, have saved about $30 million since that time.