(via Ald. Cappleman's latest newsletter)
Peterson Garden Project (PGP) will build a community garden on the empty lot in front of the former Stewart School at 4525 N. Kenmore called GrowUptown. Peterson Garden Project's mission is to recruit, educate and inspire people to grow and cook their own food, with the goal of changing lives, families and communities. In addition to five other Pop-up Victory Gardens on the north side, PGP also has a community cooking school in Edgewater that provides free education programs for kids, senior citizens, and refugees as well as cooking classes for the general public. Five percent of GrowUptown’s garden plots will be dedicated to PGP’s Grow2Give program that donates harvested vegetables to neighborhood food and nutrition programs.
Above all else, the new garden will provide opportunities to build a stronger community where neighbors can learn from each other. Peterson Garden Project is partnering with Uplift High School, Heartland Health Center, Uptown United, NeighborSpace, and my office to create this wonderful new community space for Uptown.
Since 2015, when the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) held community meetings to generate ideas for the former CPS school site, it has been clear that the community wanted to celebrate and promote the neighborhood's diversity, and this project will accomplish that goal. For a copy of MPC's report about Stewart School, click here.
Later this month, several diseased trees on the empty lot will be removed to protect the other, healthy trees. Early in 2018, after some construction on the site to prepare it for the garden, there will be community work days to build and fill the garden plots. Peterson Garden Project will be hosting two meetings in November for you to find out more about their mission, the new garden space and membership requirements. There will also be information on discounted membership fees and scholarships for individuals and families with lower incomes. For updates on these meetings and other information about Peterson Garden Project, please go to their website or Facebook page.
Learn more about gardening at Grow Uptown:
Thursday, November 9, 2017 at 7:00 p.m., location to be determined
Tuesday, November 14 at 7 p.m., location to be determined
After the first garden is complete, we plan to create a peace garden on a small space on the southern end of the property. More now than ever, we must do our part to show the world that different cultures can live in peace with one another.
Ald. James Cappleman