LEAVENWORTH COUNTY, KS (KCTV) -- A family whose farm was hit by Tuesday’s tornado has not stopped supplying fresh herbs and vegetables to dozens of well-known Kansas City restaurants.
The Crum family’s resilience inspired a group of chefs to host a “barn raising” fundraiser for them.
The big red barn was one of the most recognizable parts of the Crum's Heirlooms farm. When it came down, it landed just right and protected many of the family’s plants that were inside waiting to be planted.
Cabbage, tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, Brussels sprouts, fresh herbs, and vegetables are grown on the Crum family farm in Bonner Springs.
“We get a big bag of their spicy mustard greens,” said Bryan Sparks, Chef De Cuisine at Jax Fish House & Oyster Bar in Kansas City. “Jim and Deb still deliver produce to us personally.”
The Crums' produce makes its way to plates inside dozens of gourmet Kansas City restaurants.
After a tornado damaged the Crums home and family business, that face to face, farm to table service didn’t stop.
“I went and delivered and they were surprised, but I didn't want them to think we are out of business because we are not,” Deb Crum said. “The tornado didn't hit the field, thank goodness.”
It did hit their house, vintage 1930s barn, and greenhouse.
Employees and volunteers helped them save tomato transplants that were properly planted in the ground on Friday.
When local restaurant owners and chefs heard about the damage, they delivered food to help fuel the cleanup effort and started collecting donations.
“They are very humble people,” Sparks said. “They are a very beloved part of the restaurant community.”
The Crums feel the love.
“Oh, oh it’s so overwhelming,” Deb Crum said.
A group of 11 chefs wanted to do more. They are teaming up to host a “Barn Raising Dinner” for Crum’s Heirlooms at Jax Fish House Kansas City on June 11. Tickets are $125 and will include cocktails and a 10-course meal. Proceeds will go to help the family rebuild.
The Crums asked us to please encourage our community to show support for all of their neighbors who lost homes and property.
Many families in Leavenworth still need help cleaning up after the storm. All volunteers are asked to register at the Basehor Linwood Middle School.
For more information on how to buy one of the 75 tickets to the barn raising dinner, click here.
Here is additional information from Emergency Management on how to volunteer in Leavenworth County:
Volunteer relief efforts are being coordinated at the Basehor Linwood Middle School at 15900 Conley St. in Basehor, Kansas.
Anyone wishing to assist with the cleanup should report to the Volunteer Reception Center on Saturday, June 1 or Sunday, June 2 between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m.
Volunteers are required to check in and check out at the Volunteer Reception Center. Volunteers must be 18 year old or older.
If you want to volunteer be sure to wear long pants and boots, and have eye protection, gloves, and head wear. Remember to protect yourself from the elements with sunscreen and bug spray.