“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” –Margaret Mead
This is exactly what lead teacher Valorie Haneckow is achieving along with the help of local groups and organizations; including the Alcona 4-H Club Born in a Barn, Alcona Health Centers, Alcona County Master Gardeners, Alcona FFA Chapter, Alcona Community Schools Industrial Arts Program, Alcona Community Schools Art and Design classes, and more.
The Alcona Community Garden was launched in 2011 after receiving a start up grant from the Northeast Michigan Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative. Over the past years the garden has expanded and now includes two fenced in sections and an automatic drip irrigation watering system. The advancement in the irrigation system has greatly contributed to the gardens success. In the summer of 2013 an estimated 120 bags of produce were delivered to local organizations for distribution throughout Alcona County – And this number is expected to increase as advancements in the garden are made for next year. Russ Champagne, Agriscience Para-professional at Alcona Community Schools, is the mastermind behind these technological advancements throughout the garden. Champagne said the best part of this project is seeing the kid’s faces when they see what all their hard work has achieved.
Helen-Ann Prince, former Huron Pines AmeriCorps Member serving with the NE MI GLSI, said the unique aspect of this project is how it expands across grade levels at Alcona Community Schools. Alcona County Master Gardeners worked with first graders up to high school students to start and care for seeds. Throughout the summer students and local 4-H members from various grade levels volunteer at the garden to plant seeds, weed, trim tomatoes plants and harvest produce.
This is an exciting project with many community partners involved. If you would like to volunteer or learn more about the Alcona Community Garden please contact Valorie Haneckow at firstname.lastname@example.org.
|-Basil||-Cucumbers||-Lettuce (varying types)||-Sweet peas|
|-Carrots||-Eight ball zucchini||-Spinach||-Tomatoes (varying types)|
|-Sweet corn||-Green beans||-Squash (varying types)|