A Happy Hour edition of Maker Mornings will be held from 4:30-6 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 15, at The Gem in downtown Alexandria and feature a keynote address from the owners of Lavender Falls, a working lavender farm based in the Vernon Parish town of Hornbeck.
Maker Mornings is a quarterly event the Central Louisiana Economic Development Alliance launched in 2015 to bring local makers together to unlock their creative potential. The event is free of charge and includes light food and beverages. Learn more and register for at www.CenlaMakers.com.
Bonnie and Kurt Brochhausen will tell of their plans to transform their lavender farm into one of the first agritourism destinations in Central Louisiana. The Brochhausens started growing lavender on their 140-acre farm in Hornbeck in 2014. They currently sell their handmade lavender bath, body and beauty products online and at events in Louisiana and Texas. Their future plans are to turn Lavender Falls into a working farm where tourists can walk through lavender fields, cut fresh lavender flowers and shop for products at an on-site store. Their plans could have an economic impact on the region, Kurt said.
He advises aspiring entrepreneurs to pursue their goals and not give up. “An entrepreneur already is an out-of-the-box kind of person. You have to have that kind of mentality. To be honest, the jury was out for a while on the lavender. I didn’t know if we could do it,” he said. “You’ve got to be able to make a quality product that people want, and then you have to figure out how to get it to them. We’re making good products and sharing the experience. There’s definitely a demand for that.”
Maker Mornings events are part of Central Louisiana’s maker movement, which encourages residents to make good stuff. “The Brochhausens represent the growth and diversity of the region’s vibrant maker movement,” said CLEDA President and CEO Jim Clinton. “Lavender Falls is an exciting example of makers who are contributing to the economy by selling their creations,” added John Cotton Dean, CLEDA’s Director of the Rural Prosperity Initiative.
Maker Mornings is free, but registration is encouraged. John Cotton Dean noted that this is the second time the event has been held at 4:30 p.m. instead of early morning. Learn more and register at www.CenlaMakers.com. For more information about Maker Mornings, contact Dean at 318-441-3424.
To learn more about Lavender Falls and to see the product line, visit www.lavenderfalls.com.
The Central Louisiana Economic Development Alliance (CLEDA) is an organization which consists of the economic development entities from the parishes (counties) of Allen, Avoyelles, Catahoula, Concordia, Grant, LaSalle, Natchitoches, Rapides, Vernon and Winn. The mission of the Central Louisiana Economic Development Alliance is to help people prosper in vibrant, thriving communities.
John Cotton Dean
Director, Rural Prosperity Initiative
Central Louisiana Economic Development Alliance