2019 Clintonville Farmers' Market Kids Garden Club
The goal of the Clintonville Farmers’ Market Kids Garden Club (KGC) is to teach neighborhood children ages 6-12 how to grow vegetables while cultivating their appreciation for the work of farmers. Participants will receive 3.5 months of garden education and will help to plant and maintain their own garden bed.
Club leader Jodi of Over the Fence Urban Farm submitted a final report on this summer's experience:
The Clintonville Farmers’ Market Kids Garden Club had a great season. In late June we visited Swainway Urban Farm’s indoor growing facility for our second field trip. The kids were interested to see how Joseph mimics natural temperature fluctuations and creates humid conditions that encourage mycelium to fruit into mushrooms, even if most of the kids said they had no desire to eat them. The parents, on the other hand, were all drooling at the sight of the oyster, shitake, and chestnut mushrooms we saw.
After three seasons leading the group, I felt like the club has hit its stride. We had a few established traditions to build on and fresh faces and energy to keep things interesting.
Yesterday I received a thank you note validating my feelings. This parent and her child showed up the second week of club and when I asked, “How did you find out about the program?” she told me she saw a picture of a friend’s child holding one of our chickens and she was sold.
She wrote, “When I signed H up on a whim after seeing a friend’s Facebook post, I figured she would get a little hands-on experience…. Instead, she got something much better; she learned (through fun!) about the many ways food gets to her plate. Your approach—field trips to local farms, stories, marketing lessons, talking to the kids like the intelligent, creative beings they are—made this an exceptional experience. Watching the kids debate the charity they would designate their remaining funds to was one of the best moments in democratic debate I’ve seen in some time. So thank you, thank you. I wish every child could experience this club. I firmly believe it would make our community, nation, and world a better place.”