Itty Bitty Itta Bena Gets Big Attention From White House for Fresh Food Efforts

ITTA BENA, Miss– The small town is getting big attention, and hopefully, a big grocery store. 

Itta Bena’s only grocery store closed several years ago. So the folks there are having to travel to get groceries.

“It makes it hard on the senior citizens,” says Itta Bena Mayor Thelma Collins, “so our town has made some efforts.”

And by efforts, she means the community gardens.

“And the people have caught on to what we’re doing,” says Mayor Collins, “so people have gardens at their homes now, too.”

It’s not just the people that have caught on. Local Food, Local Places, a nationwide initiative formed by federal agencies and the White House, has caught on.

“Itta Bena was one of twenty-six communities in the country chosen for the grant,” say Mayor Collins, “it’s for technical assistance to help us attract a grocery store.”

That’s an eight-hundred thousand dollar check.

“We’re just elated to have been chosen,” say Mayor Collins.

Clarksdale was also chosen for the grant.