Giles County – A summer job probably brings up a lot of nostalgia for most; working hard in the hot summer sun, saving money for something special you wanted to buy. But for two young Giles County boys, their new business is paving a way to their future. The Pulliam brothers prove it’s never too early to start saving for college, and they have their own unique way of doing it.
Nothing really teaches the value of a hard-day's work like growing up on a farm. For 6-year-old Samuel and 3-year-old William Pulliam, those are lessons best learned in their Newport garden. They both help their parents tend to the horses, chickens and livestock, but they are especially skilled at gardening. In fact, the boys can tell you more about food and where it comes from than what most adults in 2019 can.
“There's a squash that's ready,” William shouted to his brother as 10 News joined them on a tour of their garden. “"I'll go put it in the basket,” Samuel replied. Both are extremely polite, and excited to show off their farm. Each day the pair picks what’s ripe, washes the produce and loads it in a bushel basket on their wagon to take to their stand. It’s an idea the two got after their father told them how he used to sell tomatoes as a child. Their mother said they begged for the stand after hearing the story. The boy’s parents built the stand, attached a metal roof and fixed a locked coin box for donations. They even have their own sign fixed by the stand at the end of the family’s driveway that reads “Sam and Will’s Produce.”
The sign is a point of pride for the boys.
Samuel pulls the wagon. William follows behind his big brother on his bike. They routinely stop waiting for their mom before they cross the bridge to get to the roadside stand. As soon as they get there, they unload their wagon, and eagerly stock the shelves of their stand, looking forward to seeing customers stop by. It’s a scene that’s straight from a Norman Rockwell painting – but it’s real. It’s a life that still exists in the heart of a small, tight-knit community of Giles where farming is just a way of life, and hard work is a learned necessity passed down by generations of farmers.
The boys not only can explain the process of planting, growing, caring and picking the produce – they are learning skills about math, saving money, planning for the future and customer service.
Inside the stand is a sign that lists a price for each item which frequently includes newly picked squash, beans, tomatoes, peppers and even freshly laid eggs. The price is only a donation that the boys ask which will go to their college fund. Pictures of the stand are often posted on social media – and almost daily, the stand sells out. The boys are excited each day to see how much money their stand earned them. While they know they are providing their neighbors with healthy, fresh veggies – they may not realize how much they’re making others smile.