Happiness is time spent in the garden, and we're especially happy to welcome volunteers from the Scarborough Garden Club who are helping us harvest every week. Thank you! (Pictured here are Penny & Pat, with 20 pounds of garden bounty!)
The Higgins Beach Association recently held their 'welcome back' auction and supper for its members, a time to catch up on what's been happening here and away. The annual event included a silent auction for which members of the neighborhood association collected great prizes from local artists and businesses. With good-natured and spirited bidding, members of the HBA raised a very generous donation for Project GRACE. While much of the gift is designated for fuel assistance, once again, a portion of the gift will also be used to help the Community Garden grow. Thank you, neighbors!
The Cumberland County Master Gardeners, Walmart Foundation and Sibley-Saltonstall Foundation awarded Project GRACE grants in support of its community nutrition work, including the Community Garden. Thanks to this key support, we can plant and grow. Thank you!
St. Nicholas Episcopal Church also renewed their support for the garden, pledging to cover the water bill again. Thank you!
We also appreciate the gifts in kind and discounts that allowed us to get supplies, seedlings, and compost for the garden. Thank you: Jordan's Farm, Green Spark Farm, Highland Avenue Greenhouses, Broadway Gardens, Flaherty Farm, O'Donal's, and Scarborough's ACE Hardware.
We had a great time at the Scarborough Rotary's annual "Touch a Truck" at the Scarborough Downs. Lots of kids stopped by our booth to plant seeds (put earth in the cup, poke the seeds into the planting mix, pinch some compost on top, and pour a spoonful of water to moisten). Garden enthusiasts - of all ages! - planted beans and nasturtium to take home.
We had a great time with all our friends who stopped by ACE Hardware (at Oak Hill) this weekend -- thank you Anne and Dan for inviting us to be at your annual garden party! And it was great to share a table with the Scarborough Garden Club and the Cumberland County Master Gardeners. We gave a way a lot of seeds, soil test kits, and some planting advice, too!
Please join us for the
Scarborough Community Garden
Dedication Ceremony & Open House
11:00 a.m. Sunday, May 31st
St. Nicholas Episcopal Church
350 US Route One, Scarborough
We hope you will join us in the garden on May 31st for a few words
of welcome, a ribbon-cutting ceremony, and light refreshments.
At 11:15 St. Nick’s Vicar, the Reverend David S. Heald, will offer
a blessing and dedication of the garden. All are welcome.
Hosted by: friends of St. Nick’s and the Scarborough
Community Garden Steering Committee
Scott and Jane Ducott/St. Nick’s, Pam Hillman, Bill Nixon,
Elizabeth Richter/Scarborough Garden Club,
Kathy Sparda/St. Max, Steffi Cox/Project GRACE,
Roger Doiron/Kitchen Gardeners International, ChrisTaylor.
RSVP appreciated: 883-9437 or 883-5111 or online.
The Cumberland County Master Gardeners will be helping us plant the garden on Saturday, May 2nd (9:00 - Noon). We're looking forward to having their help and expertise...and you are welcome to join us! Join our email list to stay in touch (the garden's email list is maintained by Project GRACE).
Tasks for the day include: planting early seeds and seedlings, creating paths and planting areas, pruning and clearing of brush, removing stones from the soil, making plant markers and garden signs, organizing the tool shed and setting up communication station.
Please bring your own: hand cultivators, pruning shears, sunscreen, hat, work gloves, sturdy shoes or boots, rain gear in case of inclement weather.
Our wish list includes:
-- tools in very good condition (spade, shovel, hoe, dirt rake, pitchfork, hand tools)
-- watering can
-- rain barrel
-- composter (we'd love one that spins!)
-- 5 or 6 bales of straw
-- wooden garden shed
-- seedlings and seeds
-- hardware gift certificates for supplies
We're happy to report that several youth and children's groups have stepped forward with offers to help us plant and tend and harvest the garden! Thank you, Sandpiper Children's Center, St. Max Youth Ministry, Scarborough honor society, Holy Mackerels Youth Group of St. Nick's, Scarborough girl scouts, to name just a few!
Spending time outdoors and in natural environments is good for kids: from simple joy to reducing stress to improving cognitive function and motor skills. It's also good for them to know where their food comes from, and how they can play important roles of helping in their community, too. (>>More)
We extend our appreciation to all supporters of the garden, and especially to our very first funders, whose gifts make it possible for our dreams and ideas to take root and grow. Thank you!
Episcopal Diocese of Maine
Highland Avenue Greenhouse & Farm Market
Cumberland County Master Gardeners
Kitchen Gardeners International
R J Grondin & Sons
Scott & Jane Ducott
St. Nicholas Episcopal Church
Thanks to our good friends at R J Grondin and Sons and Coastline Irrigation, we have a garden!
R J Grondin & Sons volunteered time and materials to dig the plot and turn the earth and level the plot just before Thanksgiving. Coastline Irrigation installed a fully automated irrigation system which is expandable as needed. A rain gauge is also part of the system, so that it won’t water when raining. This phase of the garden was generously funded by a grant from the Episcopal Diocese of Maine.
Highland Avenue Greenhouse & Farm Market is hosting their 3rd annual Pumpkin Festival on Saturday, October 18th.
The festival is fast becoming one of Scarborough's favorite Fall traditions. With games, refreshments, pony rides and much more - the festival is family-friendly fun for all ages. This year, proceeds from the event will benefit Project GRACE, and the nonprofit group will use the gift to support the Scarborough Community Garden!
Kitchen Gardeners International challenged members of St. Nick’s Episcopal Church and the steering committee of the garden to sing into carrots for a “higher cause”. Jane Ducott's spirited vocals lead the choir in a round of "Love Grows"! Check out the video on KGI's YouTube channel... and consider posting your own! You might just help us win a gift certificate!
You can also view our short video on VIMEO.
In preparation for a sermon at St. Nick's on Sunday, September 21st, Reverend David S. Heald spoke with the executive director of Project GRACE, Steffi Cox. He asked her how the idea of the Scarborough Garden evolved and what it meant to her personally. She reminded Rev. David that, shortly after she became executive director, she hosted a series of open conversations in the community. One of those conversations took place at St. Nick’s. Out of those conversations arose three priorities that evolved from an awareness of basic human needs: a need to stay warm, a need to eat healthful food, and a need to feel loved."It is unconscionable," Steffi said, "that in the midst of the earth’s abundance, people go hungry." It reminded Rev. David of a quote by the President of Tanzania on the MOFGA website: When people go hungry, it is not food that is short, but justice.
At the heart of the garden project, Steffi says, is a shared sense of purpose in working toward a common goal—feeding the hungry. She reflected on the odd, sometimes off-putting, configuration of the town of Scarborough. Many people have asked her: where’s the town center? And her answer: the town center is not a geographical location. Wherever we gather for a shared purpose, there we are community, and there is our center, our heart. The garden will be such a center of community, a common heart in caring for those in need. The garden, she said, may be described in one word: love.
>> Read Rev. David S. Heald's inspiring sermon. (PDF).
Garden leaders and neighborhood partners have been quietly sowing the seeds for a shared garden to grow healthy produce for the Scarborough Food Pantry and our neighbors struggling to put food on the table. St. Nicholas Episcopal Church will provide the space and water; Scarborough Garden Club and gardeners from all over town will help us plant and harvest; Kitchen Gardeners International and Cumberland County Master Gardeners are also stepping forward with advice and expertise; and Project GRACE will provide project support. Grant applications are being written, supporters and friends are being asked for gifts to cover start-up expenses like fencing and irrigation, and talent is being asked to lend a hand. Stay tuned for more news... or contact us to get involved!
Scarborough Community Garden at St. Nick's