Archives

Southeast Area Farmers’ Market open July 3

IMG_5534The Southeast Area Farmers’ Market will be open Friday July 3 but closed Saturday July 4. Regular market hours are Fridays,  3 p.m. to 7 p.m.  at Garfield Park, 334 Burton St. SE and Saturdays. 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Gerald R Ford Academic Center, 851 Madison SE.

The Market warmly welcomes patrons using Bridge cards (SNAP), Double Up Food Bucks ,WIC Project Fresh, Cash Value Benefits, Summer EBT and debit cards. If you make a purchase with a Bridge Card, you get $1 for every $1 you spend to buy more Michigan produce (up to $20 each visit).

The Market is off to a good start. Here are some photos from last Saturday’s Summer Celebration.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

A special thank you to Boston Community Bikes for doing free bike repairs; West Michigan Jewels of Africa Drum and Dance ensemble; Grand Rapids Fire Department; and musicians, Kelly Loucks-Wilson & Eddie Killowatts.

Southeast Area Farmers’ Market Summer Celebration Saturday

West Michigan Jewels of Africa Traditional African Dance and Drum Troop wowed the crowd at the market’s 2014 Summer Celebration.

West Michigan Jewels of Africa Traditional African Dance and Drum Troop wowed the crowd at the market’s 2014 Summer Celebration.

The Southeast Area Farmers’ Market hosts its Summer Celebration Saturday June 27 during market hours, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Gerald R Ford Academic Center, 851 Madison SE.. Special activities include live music, cooking demos featuring “Easy Salad Dressings,”  a noon performance by the West Michigan Jewels of Africa Traditional African Dance and Drum Troop and live music by guitarist, Eddie Killowatts.

The Southeast Area Farmers’ Market also operates 3 to 7 p.m. Fridays at Garfield Park, 334 Burton St. SE. Both locations warmly welcome Bridge cards (SNAP), WIC Project Fresh, Cash Value Benefits, Summer EBT and debit cards.Market patrons making purchases with Bridge Card/SNAP can sign up on site for Double Up Food Bucks—and receive $1 for each $1 dollar spent on Michigan produce, up to $20 for buying more Michigan produce each market visit

Though the market might look small, its vendors offer a nice the variety of locally grown produce and craft items. Come July, when the growing season is well underway, vendors will have much more fresh local produce for sale.

The Southeast Area Farmers’ Market is sponsored by Kent County Health Department, Greater Grand Rapids Food Systems Council & Our Kitchen Table, market managers.

Farmers’ Market this Friday 3 to 7 p.m. & Saturday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.!

seafm logoSoutheast Area Farmers’ Market opening days are Friday & Saturday June 19 & 20. The market operates at two locations through November 14:

  • Fridays from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
    at Garfield Park, 334 Burton St. SE.
  • Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
    at Gerald R Ford Academic Center, 851 Madison SE.

Neighbors love walking to the market, picking up fresh, locally grown produce and chatting with each other and the market vendors and staff. Don’t be afraid to ask how to use the fruits and veggies you pick up!

DUFB SEAFM 7-25The Southeast Area Farmers’ Market warmly welcomes patrons using Bridge cards (SNAP), Double Up Food Bucks ,WIC Project Fresh, Cash Value Benefits, Summer EBT and debit cards. If you make a purchase with a Bridge Card,you get $1 for every $1 you spend to buy more Michigan produce (up to $20 each visit).

FREE Mobile Food Pantry at LINC Thursday

18155c10-ce7e-4b87-9f95-c0b5188fae7bLINC is collaborating with Feeding America West Michigan (FAWM) to host a FREE Mobile Food Pantry for our local community members.The FAWM Mobile Pantry is like a farmer’s market on wheels, providing fruits, vegetables, dairy, bread, & dietary staples straight to the community.  Each pantry provides about 3 days’ worth of supplemental food for 100-200 people. In addition, we are looking for volunteers to help run the event.  If you are interested in helping out, please contact Willie at 616.451.9140 or willie@lincrev.org .Join us Thursday at the LINC Gallery!

Southeast Area Farmers’ Market opens June 19

IMG_5084The Southeast Area Farmers’ Market kicks off its 2015 season on Friday June 19, 3 – 7 p.m.,  at Garfield Park, 334 Burton St. SE. and Saturday June 20, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Gerald R Ford Academic Center, 851 Madison SE. The market is managed by Our Kitchen Table (OKT). The market warmly welcomes patrons using Bridge cards (SNAP), Double Up Food Bucks ,WIC Project Fresh, Cash Value Benefits, Summer EBT and debit cards.

As part of a Fair Food Network pilot project and in cooperation with the Kent County Health Department, OKT has been signing people up for the Double Up Food Bucks program. Patrons purchasing Michigan produce at select farmers’ markets with Bridge cards receive $1 for each $1 dollar spent, up to $20 each market visit.

The Southeast Area Farmers’ Market has an exciting line-up of market activities on its 2015 calendar. In addition, community organizations will be on hand with information, activities and services. The following events will take place from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Friday market and 12 to 2 p.m. at the Saturday market:

Cooking Demos: June 26, 27, July 24, 25, Aug. 21, 22, Sept. 26, Oct. 24 and Nov. 7.

  • seafm logoJune 27 Summer Celebration DJ & fun activities
  • July 10 & 11 Urban Foraging Workshop
  • July 31 & Aug.1 Make Your Own Personal Care Items Workshop
  • Sept. 5 Urban Foraging Workshop
  • Sept. 19 Art at the Market
  • Oct. 10 Greens Cook-off & Fried Green Tomato Festival
  • Oct. 17 World Food Day Activities
  • Oct. 31 Fall Celebration

The Southeast Area Farmers’ Market is sponsored by Kent County Health Department, Greater Grand Rapids Food Systems Council & OKT, market managers.

OKT gardens are growing!

OKT has distributed the thousands of heirloom food plants grown at Blandford Farm. Approximately 40 households are doing OKT gardens at their homes this year. In addition to providing each household with a grub box of nearly 40 food and herb plants, OKT also brings them containers or raised beds and organic soil–all at no charge. Also, each household has an assigned OKT garden coach who meets with them every week to ensure their garden thrives. OKT is also contributing plants and know-how to many school, agency and community gardens.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Thomas Street Neighborhood Garden plans orchard with Friends of GR Parks grant

Friends of Grand Rapids Parks offers mini-grants to neighborhoods and individuals to increase Grand Rapids’ tree canopy and engage citizens in caring for mature trees.
Thomas Street Neighborhood Garden choose apple, pear, cherry, plum, peach, and apricot trees for their mini orchard.

Courtesy of Jack Amick

Thomas Street Neighborhood Garden choose apple, pear, cherry, plum, peach, and apricot trees for their mini orchard.

Grand Rapids will be increasing its tree count to the delight of both neighbors on Thomas Street and those at Friends of Grand Rapids Parks working to see the city’s tree canopy grow. The new Thomas Street Community Garden is receiving six fruit trees through a mini-grant from the Friends of Grand Rapids Parks.

Sarah Scott, a member of the Baxter Community, was dreaming about adding some dwarf fruit trees to the new garden for shade and community at a neighborhood meeting.

“We liked the idea of fruit trees on the land because our neighborhood has often been overlooked, and we have not had a good way to connect with each other on our block. I have a fruit tree in my front yard, which is a few doors down from the garden space, and I’ve spent a lot of time in my own yard talking to neighbors, picking and eating fruit together. Our group thought fruit trees on our garden land would be great for teaching each other how to take care of the trees, while picking and harvesting and connecting with one another while doing so,” says Scott.

Scott mentioned saving up for the trees herself to Anna Green, who works at Baxter Community Center greenhouse. Green referred her to Friends of Grand Rapids Parks for their mini-grant program for just such projects.

Scott’s process was as simple as going to their Urban Forest Project website and filling out the mini-grant application form.

“We serve as a resource for other neighborhood groups and individuals. Our goal is to keep it as open and available as possible so neighborhoods can come to us with great projects they already support. Our matching program is pretty easy to do and includes contributions through volunteer hours, donations, or in-kind gifts,” says Steve Faber, executive director of Friends of Grand Rapids Parks.

Scott’s experience, she says, proved to be easy.

“The process was incredibly user-friendly and easy,” says Scott. “The mini-grants are only two pages long, and most is just basic info about the intent of the tree planting you would like to do. I asked the Thomas Street group for feedback and hand-wrote the grant in 20 minutes. They followed up with a call and a site visit, both of which were quick and easy. It’s clear that Friends of GR Parks wants this money to be accessible to groups and projects, and not make us jump through lots of red tape.”

Faber says the goal is to “get a project done.”

“We work with them to facilitate what needs to happen,” he says. “It’s long-term thinking of long-term survival, so we not only work to get new trees in, but focus on caring for the trees as they grow as well.”

Faber also notes that as Grand Rapids works to return to a 40 percent tree canopy, caring for mature trees is also very important.

“Mini-orchards help people identify with trees and begin to care about the trees around them. We need this because part of our goal is to preserve and protect what is already there. We must preserve the old, big trees to make it to the 40 percent goal,” he says. “We can plant trees all day, but if the big trees die, it’s decades to replace their spot in the canopy.”

The mini-orchard at the Thomas Street Community Garden will be joining this canopy soon.

“We are in the process of obtaining six semi-dwarf, self-pollinating fruit trees from Flowerland, which are grown in Michigan. Our neighborhood group decided on cherry, apple, plum, peach, pear and apricot trees. Five of the trees will be planted at the back of the garden, so as not to overshade the raised beds we will be putting in with the help of Baxter neighborhood and generous donations of neighbors. One tree will be closer to the front of the land and we hope to have a picnic table under it, for shade from the more intense growing months,” says Scott.

For more resources on caring for existing trees, Friends of Grand Rapids Parks has a list here.

For those thinking of planting mini-orchards in their community gardens, Faber encourages them to apply now for the fall planting season. This season is already full, and spring trees were ordered in February. There’s still room in the fall planting season, which is two months long. Interested people can apply here.

Applications are due by August 15 for fall tree planting.