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July

Hello to all of you wonderful CSA members!

This week's share will include salad mix, kale, green onions, zucchini, yellow beans, garlic, coriander ( aka cilantro seed!), basil, and cherry tomatoes! With the combination of hot weather and a decent amount of rain the growing has been good! The zucchinis are massive, we've got enough garlic to last for months, and our tomatoes are ripening nicely. Our flowers have also been booming. The sunflowers in our hoop house are about eight or nine feet tall and we've got whole fields growing which we will be putting into more bouquets for the rest of the summer and into fall!

The community plots are also looking beautiful. The rain that we've had recently has been really wonderful for all of our plant friends. On another community-related note, students from the Kirkhoff College Of Nursing have been volunteering at the farm. In exchange for their work, they have been taking home our leftover produce to use in cooking demonstrations for the Other Way Ministries in the West Side of downtown Grand Rapids. Not only is this a wonderful way to mitigate food waste, it's great to partner with a motivated group of students from another area of campus!

Additionally, this upcoming Friday the SAP will be hosting a workshop about the tools that we use here. The event will be from with a five dollar suggested do- nation. These workshops are a fantastic way to learn more about what we do here and how we do it! We will be following the workshop with a potluck and you all are welcome to attend! Another extra fun thing this week will be pesto samples at market tomorrow! We will be using Our home grown basil, garlic and kale (just one of many ways that you can use what's in your share), and we hope that all of you enjoy it! We will be sending out the recipe tomorrow so stay tuned.

Until next time, Cassie


May

Hello everyone!

This is my first newsletter (and my first day as an intern here at the lovely SAP) and I couldn't be more excited! My roles here will mainly be harvesting, along with working at the market and helping to distribute the CSA shares. This weeks share will include lettuce, kale, radishes, spinach, swiss chard and turnips.

For some background information about me, I am going into my senior year here at Grand Valley, and I can't believe how fast it's flying by. I am a Liberal Studies major with an emphasis in Sustainable Food Systems, and a minor in Environmental Studies.

Coming to the SAP brought a few of my different passions together (food, people, the environment...the list could go on). I firmly believe that food helps to create communities, which has been very evident here at the farm.

Perhaps one of the things I am most excited about for this summer is the community garden program, which is allowing people of all skill sets to come out to the SAP and enjoy good food (that they grew themselves) and good company. In addition, the more I am learning about our industrialized agricultural system, the more I come to appreciate the way that the food is grown here - it nourishes not only us but the earth it grows in.

I've got a lot to learn still, but this is the right place to do it. I am so excited to spend a summer surrounded by passionate and driven people who care about the world as much as I do. I can't wait to see what adventures this summer has in store, and what delicious food we are all going to get to eat.

Until next time, Cassie


April

Happy spring!

It’s hard to believe to believe our first session of CSA’s begins this week! This weeks share will include—Lettuce, arugula, turnips (one of my favorites), Swiss chard, cilantro, beets and carrots. For those of you who are opting for a Wednesday pickup, you can find us outside Lake Michigan

Hall from 3:30-5:30. Friday pickups will be at the farm anytime between 1 and 5:30. This will coincide with volunteer hours and you are all welcome to get your hands dirty! For those who are opting for Wednesday delivery, sit back, relax and we will take care of the hard work by bringing your produce right to your door.

Spots are still available for our first session—recruit a friend and get a free $10 voucher to use at our stand at the farmer’s market. And yes, we will still be accepting share members after the first week at an adjusted rate.

It’s an exciting time of year to watch life come back to the farm. Last Friday we had some special activities on the farm for Earth Day. 14 students from the Gerald R.

Ford Jobs Corps Center visited the SAP, which marks the beginning of a collaboration to start an urban farm in downtown Grand Rapids. We also spread “seed bombs” of native species on our new land to provide support for our honey bees and other native pollinators.

It’s still early in the season—if there are any special crops you would like us to grow, let me know and we will plant some for you!

Thanks for your support. The SAP could not be where it is today without our vibrant community at our core.

Warm Regards, Youssef Darwich Farm Manager