Sunny Point Café Garden Manager Alice Oglesby Practices Spade to Spoon

A garden.
Alice Oglesby

The following article originally appeared in the Asheville Independent Restaurant Association Newsletter.

Nearly 20 years ago, from her office above Sunny Point Café, Alice Oglesby could see a garden taking shape below. The property April Moon Harper and her mother, Belinda Raab, bought at the corner of Haywood Road and State Street in West Asheville included a two-story building — which became the restaurant they opened in 2003 — a rental home, and an overgrown vacant lot.

Oglesby came into the picture about a year later, contracted to do their design and marketing work and renting office space for her business on the second floor. From her bird’s-eye view, she observed them building raised beds in the lot near the restaurant.


Gardening is deeply embedded in Oglesby’s DNA. Raised in rural Vermont in a log cabin her parents built themselves, everyone she knew had a garden. “It was just that New England practicality,” she explains. “We had a big garden, all our neighbors had a big garden. I grew up working in the garden.”

Thinking she needed a legitimate career, she went to the University of Vermont to study engineering and worked summers on a large farm that grew for wholesale customers and a busy pick-your-own business. “I learned to grow for aesthetics and volume, how to care for and grow things we didn’t at home.”

To continue reading this article, please visit the Asheville Independent Restaurant Association Newsletter website. For more on Sunny Point Café, visit

Prepared by the Asheville Independent Restaurant.