Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Honoring Our Farmers

Well, I haven't really wanted to "use" my blog to "sell" my book. But then I got to thinking, I did the book to tell the stories of our South Bay farmers and unless I talk about it, and sell it, then I can't talk about them.

So, as you can see by the little announcement at the top of this blog, my book officially went on sale on Monday (it should be at most local bookstores by the end of the week and I am giving several presentations and signing books so check out the event section to find them). It's called Farming in Torrance and the South Bay and its a pictorial history book that tells the story of those who made up our once thriving agricultural industry.

It also includes modern urban agriculture in the last section. And, one of the few people in my book and in our area who actually bridges both our farming past and present, is Tom Ishibashi (pictured here in February).
He is not one to boast or to brag about himself, but since my new Farm Aid T-Shirt asks the question, "Who's Your Farmer Hero," I will brag for him by saying that my answer is "Tom Ishibashi."

He is part of a family that has farmed in the South Bay for the past 100 years and that has contributed to our local economy through the hard work of farming, starting first as dry farmers!

His farm at the Torrance Airport is the last "traditional" farm in Torrance and the long lines at his produce stand on Crenshaw Boulevard that start forming when his first strawberries appear in spring attest to the fact that we are appreciative of his life's work and hope that he continues to farm.

If you haven't been fortunate enough to try his wonderful produce, make sure you stop by the stand at 24955 Crenshaw Boulevard. He has strawberries in spring, and the sweetest corn you ever tasted starting in summer and he also grows a variety of veggies including tomatoes, carrots, zucchini, and coming soon watch for pumpkins.

He is also one of the quickest and funniest men I have ever meant and is always good for giving me a laugh. I want to thank Tom for telling me his story, taking me out to the fields to take photos and actually posing for me even though he is camera shy.

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