Monday, October 11, 2010
PressConnects: Urban Farmers Pitch In For Global Event
Binghamton Urban Farm Project takes part in global environmental event
By Steve Reilly •email@example.com • October 10, 2010, 11:20 pm
CONKLIN -- A group of young environmentalists celebrated a global day of action on Sunday by tending the soil beneath their feet.
On the brisk October morning, about 20 people -- many of them Binghamton University students -- gathered on a 7-acre farm by the Susquehanna River in Conklin to clear the land and plant garlic in preparation for the winter.
One acre of the farm -- a piece of land repossessed by a local community farming organization after it was destroyed by flooding in 2006 -- is devoted to the Binghamton Urban Farm Project, a mostly student-led effort to increase access to fresh, locally-grown produce in urban areas.
The project is an initiative of the local nonprofit group Volunteers Improving Neighborhood Environments, or VINES.
"This project is very much about creating affordable , healthy, safe organic food with -- and for -- the surrounding community," said Kate Cardona, coordinator of the project. "All of the food that we grow here will be used to that end."
Produce grown by the group is available at the Otsiningo Park farmers market from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays through the end of November, and the group's farm stand at 16 Tudor Street in Binghamton is open from 4 to 7 p.m. on Thursdays.
The group's work project on Sunday was planned to coincide with the "10/10/10 Global Work Party" organized by the climate change organization 350.org.
Farm manager Johan Jelsma said while he's "one of those people who wishes that every day was a global day of action," he was glad to see one day of that action take place at home.
"You can feel it, being here," he said. "Everyone just comes out and is willing to get down on their hands and knees to pull up weeds, and it's a beautiful thing."
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