Westport 4/17

Here's a green thought for Spring: Wouldn't it be great if Westport had a Community Garden? A place where wholesome organic food could be grown on a cooperative basis, with the help and for the benefit of the community as a whole? Where gardening workshops could be held, and where elderly or disabled gardeners could work alongside younger or able-bodied folks in a mutually beneficial exchange of knowledge and experience for strength and stamina?

It looks we now have a chance to make this wonderful idea into a reality, at least if Pastor Leon Hebrink of the Westport Federated Church has anything to say about it. Working with the Future for Westport Quality of Life Committee, Pastor Leon has developed a plan to expand on the already established garden area behind the church, as well as to coordinate the creation of additional raised beds and container gardens in other spots around town, using community volunteers and local materials.

The concept is aimed at responding to the needs of those who don't have access to gardens, or who require a handicapped-accessible layout, but it's also about sharing food and other resources, reducing our carbon footprint, and forging stronger bonds between different age groups as well as between seasonal and year-round residents.

The concept also calls for seed-swap and seed-donation programs (ditto for plants and tools); the establishment of a common compost area (to which local restaurants may contribute organic refuse); a plan for distributing food to the hungry (and for home gardeners to pitch in with contributions of their own crops); and gardening workshops on subjects such as herbal lore, children's gardening, and canning.

What a great way to bring us together. In fact, the phrase "Community Garden" tells you not just who's doing the growing, but what's being grown as well. If you're interested in helping grow our community, contact Pastor Leon at 962-8293.

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