Harborside Community Urban Garden Project Q&A

Last week we had a post that included info about the Harborside Community Urban Garden Project’s request for a $71,000 grant to continue its activities next year.

At the end of last school year, KenoWi went along on a tour of the project’s sites. Above are photos from that day. Below is a Q&A interview with Mary S. Bohning of Harborside Academy who leads the program.

KenoWi: Can you tell me a little about the origins of the  Harborside Community Urban Garden Project?

Mary S. Bohning: The Five Acres and No Mule Farm began with the introduction of the students to the site at XTEN Industries in the fall and culminated in the spring with the establishment of the garden beds. We began with four beds in the beginning which were funded by Mr. John Zenner, a businessman from Elkhorn (faculty member Mrs. Wambold’s father). Donations continued, and we were able to build a total of 13 beds. I had successfully partnered with the Kenosha County Health Department in a “Get the Word Out” campaign for the H1N1 flu season. Students from Harborside Academy were responsible for the development of door hangers, posters, table tents, and a public service announcement that played at Tinseltown during flu season (2008-09) academic year. Diana Andrekus (DHS representative) asked if I would sit on a Healthy Youth Kenosha County Coalition, and I accepted. Then, in June of last year, she contacted me to ask if I was interested in applying for a grant that was running from the DHS – Nutrition Physical Activity and Obesity grant. Diana was aware of the garden and was supportive, and knowing Harborside, she felt we would be successful.

KenoWi.com: Can you tell me a little about its current activities and how it fits into Harborside or other schools’ curriculums?

Mary S. Bohning: Currently, we have the 13 beds at XTEN, access to Hansen’s Gardens Greenhouse (generously offered for our use), the eight beds at EBSOLA, and the four beds at KTEC. The gardens fit into KUSD – Harborside’s 11th grade ecology/environmental science curriculum, health curriculum(nutrition and physical activity), Physical Education curriculum (nutrition and physical activity), and the Foss kit elementary education science curriculum.

KenoWi.com: Can you tell me a little about its future goals?

Mary S. Bohning: Future goals are to expand during the 2011-2012 school year to Frank, Wilson and Dimensions of Learning Schools in KUSD. It is our goal to have a garden at every school within the next five years.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *