The 2017 growing season has come to an end with the wintry cold rains and short days! Our culminating Thanksgiving Harvest Feast was a delicious success, and the gardens are tucked in for the winter. The bean teepees have been taken down, and farm classes are over for the year. They will begin again in January when the new season begins. You can read about our fall activities HERE. We have so many people and organizations to thank!
In addition we give thanks for:
- A new garden in front of the High School, which we accomplished with the help of many students, volunteers, and community donations.
- Pacific Utilities/Whidbey Telecom, who with great determination and skill installed the water system at the High School Garden
- Whidbey Island Garden Tour, who provided funding for the fence, irrigation and other infrastructure supplies
- South Whidbey Schools Foundation who is supporting the High School and Middle School agriculture program through a generous grant. Now we are offering farm-based curriculum K-12!
- The new Snack Garden next to the Elementary School funded by kidsgardening.org
- South Whidbey Garden Club whch donated funds that supported our start growing program.
- The Goose Grocer for its ongoing donations of grocery items to the SNACC (Student Nutrition and Culinary Community) program during the school year and at the Thanksgiving Feast. Also to Whidbey Pies, Price Johnson Construction, LaVassar Florists for their donations to the Thanksgiving Feast.
- Whidbey Island Nourishes who provides a place for food prep with the children in the WIN kitchen, provides essential support and assistance during Thanksgiving, Earth Day and Orca Picnic events, and distributes school-grown produce to students in their backback program.
- Mark Dworkin and Melissa Young, for their short film about the School Farm program, Cultivating Kids, now available by pay on demand HERE.
- The collaboration, since May 2014, with Chartwells, the school district corporate food service, to deliver school farm-grown produce that they serve in the school lunches.
- Good Cheer Food Bank and the Good Cheer Garden who grow food for the school cafeterias at the Big ACRE farm, and who partners with the district in the Grow Whidbey apprenticeship program.
- Our two apprentices this year, Ryan Viscito and Mike Ferncase, who helped grow a lot of food and teach a lot of children.
- The tremendous support of the superintendent, School Board, Facilities personnel, administrators and teachers who help make the program happen.
- The Farm Team who grow and cultivate the school farms with the students, teach the K-12 farm-based classes and grade 3 – 7 culinary (SNACC) classes, deliver produce to the cafeterias, and organize the Thanksgiving, Earth Day and Orca Picnic events.
- The Dream Team of volunteers who install essential infrastructure improvements.
- Jude Bierman for her visionary contributions to the SNACC program, teaching curriculum, and Thanksgiving, Earth Day and Orca Picnic events.
We are so blessed to be making a difference in the lives of the students K-12 who cultivate, grow and eat all the veggies while learning science and life skills in the garden. They are the next generation caring for our planet, our food and nourishment, and our future.