October 26, 2011
A screening of A Community of Gardeners at Busboys and Poets drew a full house on October 24. The screening was one of thousands of events which took place throughout the country in celebration of Food Day, a national day which promotes healthy eating, access to fresh food and sustainable food production. It was followed by a panel discussion moderated by Marsha Weiner of Food Muse Media with filmmaker Cintia Cabib, five D.C. community gardeners, and Alice Kamps, the curator of the National Archives exhibit, “What’s Cooking, Uncle Sam?.” Kealy Rudersdorf and Nicolás Troncoso, volunteers at the Marion Street Garden, talked about their work teaching kids how to plant, harvest and cook fresh vegetables and herbs grown at the garden. Kealy previously spent more than a year in Costa Rica working at a family-run organic chocolate farm. Pat Ragland and her teenage son CJ shared their experiences participating in the Washington Youth Garden’s “Growing Food…Growing Together” program for the last nine years. CJ has grown to love vegetables and gardening and plans to continue visiting the Washington Youth Garden after he begins college next year. Jeremiah Lowery, a program fellow at Common Good City Farm, discussed how the farm is providing access to fresh, healthy food to low-income D.C. residents and teaching gardening skills to the local community. Audience members and panelists also discussed land tenure issues, expanding community gardens in areas considered food deserts, and the resources available for individuals who want to start their own community garden.