WRAL SmartShopper

WRAL SmartShopper

Can you help these readers with produce co-ops and downtown parking?

Posted January 27, 2011 5:38 p.m. EST

I received 2 questions from readers today and I bet you have some great suggestions! One needs some advice on local produce co-ops and the other is starting a new job in downtown Raleigh and needs to find some frugal parking...if there is such a thing!

From Amanda regarding produce co-ops:

A friend of mine at work mentioned that he and his wife are a member of a food (veggies/fruit) buying co-op in Raleigh. It is my understanding that a couple of people go to the Farmers Market and purchase items in bulk, member families have already ordered based on their shares. I think this is a home-school based group, but they are too far from where I live. Do you know of any food buying co-ops in the RTP/Durham/Morrisville areas?

My experience: I have purchased from the Raleigh Farmer's Market in the wholesale section before. There are some very good deals when you buy in bulk. I actually spoke with a friend today and we are going to start sharing some bulk produce from the Farmer's Market again. I have not purchased from a co-op for various reasons, but many folks with whom I have spoken have had good experiences with them. There are co-op pick-up sites and co-ops that deliver all over the Triangle. For those who have any recommendations for local co-ops, please post them here. As always, I also recommend growing a garden in the summer and fall and freezing produce.

From Dot regrding parking in downtown Raleigh:

I am starting a p/t job Fri downtown Raleigh off Salisbury St near Wilmington also. Since I am p/t, it will really hurt to pay to park only to work 5 or 6 hrs. I only have 2 p/t jobs so I'm feeling the stretch. I didn't know if you might have any smart ideas on how to save money as far as parking goes downtown or any advice on how to obtain it.

My experience: None. Never worked downtown. I usually park in a parking deck when we attend functions at Meymandi or park at meters when we go to museums. My only suggestions would be to find someone to carpool with (if there is anyone with your schedule) or parachute in. Probably not gonna happen for either, though. I am sure Dot would definitely appreciate your suggestions on frugal parking downtown.

Thanks in advance for any help you can offer!