Posts tagged ‘garden activism’
Tonight catch a screening of “Taking Root, the Vision of Wangari Maathai.” It’s the kick-off for a new community garden at the Davey Lopes Rec. Center in Providence.
The invitation says: “This powerful documentary film tells the inspiring story of Wangari Maathai, the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize winner who is internationally recognized for her contribution to sustainable development, democracy, and peace. Wangari founded the Green Belt Movement in Kenya Africa with women whose simple act of planting trees and food gardens grew into a nationwide movement to protect human rights and defend democracy.”
The event is free, and there will be refreshments (home-made ginger beer, lemonade, farm-fresh salad, and apples).
Where: Davey Lopes Recreation Center, 227 Dudley St, Providence
Apologies to KISS…
Yesterday, I went to a meeting for Providence’s Urban Agriculture Task Force. Launched 4-5 years ago, it’s a confederation of state, local, non-profit, and individual representatives. Some of the projects initiated and/or completed by members include:
- installing new community gardens around the city, including sites at Sessions St. Park, Early St, Davis Park, Pearl St., Riverside Park, and more
- introducing urban agriculture in community planning meetings, the Mayor’s Green plan, and the Providence Comprehensive Plan
- launching a citywide Community Gardens Network
- developing strategies to integrate food gardens with affordable housing
- holding 50-mile meals at Mount Hope Farm, Local 121, and Providence College
- creating the RI Farm To School Project to connect local farms with school lunch programs
- planning an edible landscape (an orchard!) in Locust Grove Cemetery
- working with the RI Dept of Health and Statewide Planning to ensure that urban agriculture is in local comprehensive plans
- preparing a series of reports on Providence Urban Agriculture
Amazing projects in Providence and beyond. And more to come. If you want to get involved, contact the UATF via Southside Community Land Trust.
RISD’s Office of Public Engagement is opening a new exhibit on Tricks of the Eye: History and Memory in Today’s Shifting Social Landscape. The exhibit “highlights recent projects by contemporary artists that explore innovative ways of navigating today’s shifting social landscape.” The exhibit runs March 5 – April 3 at 169 Weybosset St., Providence. Opening is Thurs., March 5 from 6-8pm.
One of the featured projects is the MIT FEMA Trailer Project: Timeline and Armadillo. The Armadillo was a FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) Trailer that was intended to house families in the Gulf Coast displaced by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. MIT students worked with artist Jae Rhim Lee to transform the unit into a Composting Station and Vertical Garden. MIT is running two contests to encourage additional trailer transformations and the chance to win the Armadillo.
Meanwhile, across town at the Steel Yard, Providence people are thinking about how to resuscitate the Urban Agricultural Unit–a mobile greenhouse fabricated from a discarded shipping container. This project was featured at ProvFlux a couple years ago.
When soil is toxic, when people are suddenly in need…roll in a mobile garden!
On Superbowl Oscar nite, pay attention to the Documentary Feature category. One of the five nominees is “The Garden” (director Scott Michael Kennedy) which follows the story of a community garden in South Central Los Angeles. The garden was established on 14-acres of city-owned landin the aftermath of the 1992 LA riots. It claims to be the largest community garden in the United States.* When the land was sold to a private developer in 2003, local citizens**, many of them Latino immigrants, rallied to protect the garden.
And, stay tuned for Green Zone the movie later in 2009. Synopsis: Matt Damon visits a certain Providence garden and eats some kale. Or in THEIR version, Matt Damon plays a warrant officer who helps a senior CIA officer searching for Weapons of Mass Destruction.
*Don’t get me started on talking about all the acres of community gardens in Rhode Island during World War I. Maybe there wasn’t one single 14-acre plot (THOUGH MAYBE THERE WAS), but, for example, Brown & Sharpe oversaw 30 acres of gardens in Providence’s Smith Hill neighborhood in 1917. Let’s just say that this LA garden is very very large.
**plus Dennis Kucinich, Willie Nelson, and other celebs.