Chong Moua with her offerings at Brookside
Chong Moua and her husband, Wa Bee (nickname “Bee”), own a 15 acre farm south of Inola. They grow vegetables on six acres, close to their home. They also have two cows, two calves, and some pasture. After farming with family for 13 years in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, the Mouas moved to Oklahoma and began farming here in 2009. It was a difficult transition at first, as the Mouas found the Oklahoma climate too hot in comparison to Wisconsin; however, with a long family tradition in farming coupled with the economic downturn during which both Chong and Wa Bee lost their jobs, they returned eagerly to farming.
Now the farm has 6000 asparagus plants (!) and lots of tomatoes and zucchini because they are Chong’s favorite vegetables to grow. Chong says she loves farming, because it is less stressful than office work, and she gets lots of exercise, of course.
Born in Laos, Chong came to the US when she was 15 and has raised six children, several of whom have already graduated from college. Her teenage son, Kevin, often helps out at the market. Wa Bee does the planting and weeding and loves the outdoors as much as Chong, who takes care of the harvesting and selling at market. After a day of farm work, Wa Bee works the swing shift at Nordam as a machinist.
Chong enjoys the Cherry Street Farmers’ Market very much, citing the customers, the happy people, the dogs, and the parents with kids in strollers as her favorite reasons for coming to market. At some point in the future, Chong would like to have school children come to the farm to learn how strawberries, watermelons and pumpkins are grown.