Posts Tagged ‘Local Food’

Sustainable Nantucket is Grateful Recipient of Grant Support

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

Sustainable Nantucket would like to thank the following organizations for their recent, generous grant awards:

ReMain Nantucket has awarded SN a $7,500 grant, designed to aid SN in remaining in our downtown offices in 2012. Clif Bar Family Foundation has awarded SN a $5,000 grant to be used for operating expenses. The Agua Fund has awarded SN a $3,000 grant to be used for operating expenses. The Community Foundation of Nantucket has awarded SN a $1,000 grant to assist with our Farm to School Program.

Sustainable Nantucket would like to express our sincere gratitude to these organizations for their generous support of our mission, vision and programs.

Progress in our Farm to School Garden

Friday, December 16th, 2011

Update: Farm to School in Action! Fall 2011

Sunflowers: This fall, SN Program Manager Morgan Beryl and Francie Baskett of ISLE (Interest-based Student Learning & Enrichment) Program worked on a project with 6 Nantucket students who had, as second graders in 2010, planted sunflowers in the Farm to School garden.

As part of the project, the students drew pictures of sunflowers, complete with labels indicating each part of the sunflower; they wrote an illustrated book about sunflowers; and demonstrated what they had learned by naming the flowers’ parts as they harvested the seeds. The seeds were put into packets and will be given as gifts – a wonderful way to share the Farm to School experience with friends and family! View the photo album for this project on our Flickr page HERE.

Pumpkins: This fall, first grade ISLE (Interest-based Student Learning & Enrichment) students embarked on a pumpkin-themed project as part of our Farm to School Program. The students learned about the anatomy of a pumpkin, how to harvest seeds, and carved jack-o-lanterns for Halloween.

The harvested pumpkin seeds were saved in Ball jars adorned with student-made labels and recipes for roasting.

Many thanks to Frances Baskett of the ISLE Program, participating WPI students, F2S Coordinator Kathleen Minihan, & Program Manager Morgan Beryl for making this fun and informative project happen! View the photo album for this project on our Flickr page HERE.

Update: October 10th, 2011… Building Raised Beds

Students from the Boys & Girls Club help with the raised beds.

During the first week of October, Sustainable Nantucket started construction of the raised beds in the Farm-to-School Garden. Volunteer Mitch Blake lead the Youth Council, members of the Boys & Girls Club, and other generous volunteers, and together they leveled the land and transformed the space into the new home of three rows of raised beds, including a wheelchair accessible bed. The newly constructed raised beds were filled with loam and were unveiled at the Discover Your Garden event hosted by Sustainable Nantucket on Monday, October 10th. To view more photos click here.

Our First Season of Gleaning

This was the inaugural summer for the Sustainable Nantucket Gleaners, who have been very busy harvesting surplus produce from Moors End Farm and assisting NPS Food Services Director Linda Peterson in preparing the produce for use in NPS school lunches. Check out all the updates HERE.

Update: September 23, 2011…Lasagna in the Garden?

Students building layers of lasagna compost

On Wednesday, September 21st, 2011 the Youth Council and Farm to School volunteers got together for Student Harvest Week for some lasagna composting! The group met at the NES garden and worked for 2 hours laying down multiple levels of organic and soil materials. This “lasagna bed” of compost will “cook” over the winter to provide nutrient rich soil for the spring when it’s time to replant our seeds. Our “lasagna” layers included cardboard, lime, peat moss, chopped leaves, barn litter, coffee grounds, and compost. Many of these materials were donated by individuals and businesses including: The Bean, The Pearl, Jesse Dutra Landscaping, Suzanne Gardener, and Bartlett’s Farm among others. Many thanks to our donors!

Wednesday’s participants included: Morgan Beryl, SN Program Manager; Beth Davies, SN Board Member; Sophie Davies and Sean Allen, Youth Council Members; and Denise, Phil & Conor Allen; John Benjamin and Nora Harrington.

Update: September 4th – Dads & Kids – Sowing Seeds for a Sustainable Future

Sowing seeds - Dads & Kids

On September 4th Sustainable Nantucket and the Community Network for Children welcomed dads and kids ages 2 1/2 years and up to spend an afternoon with us in the Farm to School Garden. We cleared out the garden for Fall crops and prepared the soil for the 2012 growing season. This was a great opportunity for the little ones to get their hands in the soil, and an exercise in building good foundations for future gardeners. We think the dads enjoyed themselves too! We hope this will be the first of many activities involving pre-schoolers in the Farm to School Garden.

Update Spring 2011

Students in the Garden, Spring 2011

Student members of the SN Youth Council, Sustainable Nantucket staff and SN volunteers are hard at work preparing for the installation and first growing season of the Farm to School Garden at Nantucket Public Schools. Donations we have received thus far have made this project possible, however more funding is needed to see it to completion. For information on how your contribution can help our garden grow, click here.

For a list of the businesses and individuals who have contributed to this project, click here.

The Garden So Far…

May 21 & 22: The SN Youth Council, SN staff, and a group of volunteers from the community gathered at the site of the Farm to School Garden to assist with the construction of the greenhouse, shed and fencing.

Construction of the Greenhouse, Shed & Fence. Spring 2011

May 4, 2011: We have a final design for the garden layout! (see below). The design is a combination of ideas from our Youth Council and their Garden Mentors. Click here to see the designs our student members submitted.

The NHS shop class students, with teacher Chuck Colley, participated in the design of the Garden tool shed, which will be constructed in mid-May along with the greenhouse and fencing.

The NPS Food Services Department will be working with SN, the Youth Council, and after school garden clubs to decide whichvegetables and herbs are the most beneficial to plant for use in the school system.

Some of the food grown in the garden will be preserved by Food Services, students and community volunteers. Program Manager Morgan Beryl is optimistic that the garden will eventually produce enough food to share with local seniors groups, food pantries, and to sell at the Farmers & Artisans Market.

We will continue to post our progress here as the season continues!

Moving Planet Action Day – How We Participated

Friday, November 11th, 2011

On September 24th, Sustainable Nantucket and Far Away Farms intern Justine Paradise; Sustainable Nantucket’s Farm-to-School intern Elizabeth Murphy; and community volunteer Zack Dusseau lead a team of volunteers in tending Sustainable Nantucket’s Small Friends Garden as part of 350.org’s Moving Planet Action Day. (more…)

Locally Grown Dinner Series: End of Season Thanks

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

Last night friends and supporters of Sustainable Nantucket gathered at American Seasons to give thanks and celebrate an evening of beautiful food at the final Locally Grown Dinner of the 2011 Series.

Chef Michael LaScola artfully paired treats such as Nantucket bay scallops from Nantucket Fresh Catch and native pork belly from Faraway Farms with seasonal vegetables from our growers, while Orla LaScola and her team provided exceptional (more…)

Enter Our Raffle & Win a Bartlett’s Farm CSA Membership!

Tuesday, November 1st, 2011

Our raffle winner will receive a 14 week membership in Bartlett’s Farm Summer CSA running 6/1/12-8/31/12 (Retail value $630!). CSA members get a weekly pick up of farm fresh veggies at Bartlett’s Farm.

Raffle tickets are $15 each, 3 for $35. All proceeds from this raffle will go towards our Programs, outreach and initiatives.

To purchase tickets: CONTACT US at 508-228-3399, via EMAIL, or purchase tickets at our Locally Grown Dinner at American Seasons on November 7. (more…)

Fun for All at Discover Your Garden/Family Picnic Day at the Joyce N. Furman FARM TO SCHOOL Youth Garden

Friday, October 14th, 2011
Monday, October 10th marked Sustainable Nantucket’s first Discover Your Garden and Family Picnic Day at the Joyce N. Furman FARM TO SCHOOL Youth Garden. Over 75 people were in attendance, with Fire Chief Bill Pittman, Town Manager Libby Gibson, Nantucket Garden Club President Paulette Boling, and NPS Food Services Director Linda Peterson among them. Attendees came to participate in SN’s annual meeting; a ribbon cutting for the Joyce N. Furman FARM TO SCHOOL Youth Garden; and Family Picnic Day. (more…)

Nantucket Garden Club Grant Benefits SN Farm to School Garden

Friday, September 23rd, 2011

Sustainable Nantucket is thrilled to announce that its Farm to School Program has received a generous $5,000 grant from the Nantucket Garden Club. The funds received will be used for garden infrastructure, including loam and compost, a slow-drip irrigation system, supplies for preserving food grown in the garden, and more. (more…)

Update on Land Use Partnership Initiative with Pilot Grazing Project

Thursday, September 15th, 2011

In  2011 Sustainable Nantucket  launched our Land Use Partnership Initiative with a Pilot Grazing Project in partnership with the Nantucket Island Land Bank and Faraway Farms.  A Sustainable Nantucket apprentice worked with Island livestock farmers Caleb Cressman, Dylan Wallace, Nicole DuPont and Andy Harris –all of Faraway Farms– and learning how to maintain a small flock of sheep and chickens on the Land Bank’s Craig Property. In 2012, our 3-way land-use partnership will be re-located to the Land Bank’s Pout Pond Rd. property – a four acre parcel off of Milestone Rd. (more…)

About SN’s Land Use Partnership Initiative

Thursday, September 15th, 2011

Photo by Dylan Wallace

It’s hard to imagine now, but according to this map on the Nantucket Historical Association’s web site, there were over 100 farms on Nantucket in the 1850’s. In 2007, when SN started our Farmers & Artisans Market, Nantucket had 3  farms (one of which was NCF’s Cranberry B0gs) and a handful of small scale growers operating commercially. Today, in 2011, there are  7  farms plus several small-scale growers that are commercially growing and harvesting food (produce, eggs, meat, honey, shellfish) for sale to Nantucket consumers.

It’s no surprise to anyone that the cost of land on the Island makes commercial farming prohibitive for most. Nantucket farmers are additionally burdened with higher operational costs than most off-island farmers – fuel, equipment, supplies and materials, not to mention labor and overhead, are generally more expensive on Nantucket. Yet as a community we understand the positive health, environmental and economic impact that supporting local agriculture can have. Sustainable Nantucket has begun to examine ways that it can help support and increase agricultural industry on the island, and give consumers greater access to the foods produced by local farmers.

Sustainable Nantucket has worked closely with Island growers to identify the role we can play in supporting and helping to grow the Island’s agricultural industry, and, in response, we have launched the Sustainable Nantucket Land Use Partnership Initiative.

This initiative is designed to increase agricultural acreage through partnerships with land-owning organizations and individuals, and to establish a skilled agricultural workforce on Nantucket through collaboration with experienced island growers. We aim to establish an educated and trained agricultural workforce while increasing the amount of land farmed on the island. Elements of this Initiative include:

  • Making more farm land available through  Land-Use Partnerships with the Nantucket Islands Land Bank and other land-owning entities
  • Expansion of our already-existing Agricultural Apprenticeship Initiative —where we pair apprentices interested in becoming farmers with experienced island growers.
  • Expanding agricultural production and “growing new growers & farmers” through education

Current Projects

  • Our  Grazing Project pairs an SN apprentice with local livestock farmers from FarAway Farms to graze the Pout Pond Rd. property owned by the Nantucket Islands Land Bank. Read more – CLICK HERE.

The Future

Laying the groundwork for potential use of additional Land Bank land as well as land owned by other organizations and private landowners is in process and we continue to explore expanding acreage through partnerships with other organizations and private land-owners – eventually creating a network of grazed and cultivated land all over the island.

SN Wraps Up First Season of Mid-Island Farmers Market

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

The first season of Sustainable Nantucket’s Mid-Island Farmers Market at 113 Pleasant Street has come to a close, but SN staff and volunteers, encouraged by the positive response to the Market, are already thinking ahead to the 2012 season. (more…)