Egremont Businesses Team Up with Greenagers
to Raise Funds for Community Gardens at French Park
Kenver will host a fundraising party on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017, 5-7:30 p.m., to help boost Egremont businesses’ efforts to raise money for construction of a Greenagers Front Lawn Food garden installation at Egremont’s French Park in 2018.
Local businesses have contributed start-up funds for eight raised beds and the town Select Board has approved adding water service to support the garden project. But additional funds are needed to pay part-time staff person to oversee planting and to maintain the gardens.
The gardens will be available to Egremont residents who are interested in growing their own food, and special efforts will be made include lower income families who may find retail prices for organic food too costly. Businesses that have so far committed funds so far include Kenver, John Andrews, Old Mill, Karner Brook LLC, 41 Main, Egremont Barn, North Egremont Country Store, Red Chair Press, Only in My Dreams and the Inn at Sweetwater Farm.
“We are very aware of the high cost of healthy, organic food and we want to do something here in Egremont,” said Lucinda Vermeulen, President of Kenver, who will host the event at her store. “We are inspired by Greenagers’ effort to ‘close the food gap’ and want to help. Through this event we hope to inspire other communities to support Greenagers’ and all they do.”
The evening will include wine and local beer, music, food, and a presentation by Greenagers.
Front Lawn Food is a grow-your-own-food initiative of Greenagers, a local nonprofit jobs program for youth interested in farming, conservation and outdoor work. Egremont businesses, led by Lucinda Vermeulen , were inspired by the Greenagers’ Front Lawn Food program, which provides lower-income families with free, raised bed vegetable gardens.
The Front Lawn Food impact has blossomed in the last few years as increasingly popular community program: in past years, Greenagers constructed and planted raised bed gardens for 10 income-eligible families in the region. However, the creation of the “Donor Garden” program has expanded the program to far more families: with each full-price donor garden, another eligible family can receive a free garden. In 2017, Greenagers installed 40 Front Lawn Food Gardens.
There is no admission price for the Sept. 15 event, but guests to give what they can to support the French Park project and Greenagers. Cash, checks and online donations will be accepted at the event.