Dear Friend, 

Ever since I moved to the Valley last August, I have spent my down time exploring local woods, and these days it seems like the scenery changes every time I head out. As I get more familiar with the landscape, I find that seasonal shifts add an element of surprise and novelty each time I return to an area. Now that we’ve hit mid-spring, if you pay close attention to the growth on either side of a trail, or even a neighborhood sidewalk, familiar spaces can begin to feel new and undiscovered.

May is a month of edible ephemerals, so I am learning where to find ramps, ostrich fern fiddleheads, and clusters of field garlic. I recently returned to a spot where I saw spindly, withered asparagus stalks this winter, and picked fresh spears for dinner; this past weekend I found my first morel mushrooms under an apple tree, whose fruit I harvested last October. 

I adore working in Grow Food Northampton's education program because I share a sense of wonder with my students, everyday radical amazement at what we can find on the side of a trail, harvest from a garden bed, or create with a few simple ingredients. Most second graders have eaten apples, spinach, and carrots, but give them the space and tools to chop them up themselves and assemble them in a wrap, and you’ve created a completely captivating experience. None of us, myself included, have made a chocolate beet cake before, but we are all equally jazzed to prepare one together over Zoom in our Grow Food Cooks classes this week.

I have a vivid memory of the first time I encountered one of my students in person, him catching me at the door as I left his weekly recipe kit. He waved emphatically while I dropped the kit on the step, and we shared a moment of excited recognition, a mutual “Wow! You exist in real life!” 

I look forward to recognizing more faces at the Tuesday Market this summer, or at one of our upcoming Giving Garden events, where we will harvest and cook some of the edible plants growing wild around the garden’s border. Through my work, and in all parts of my life, I hope to keep fostering familiarity with our food sources, with the land we inhabit, and with each other. And I hope to maintain my sense of wonder, of amazement, of everyday new-ness in my encounters with increasingly familiar spaces and people. 

See you soon, and be sure to wave hello!

Jules White
TerraCorps Youth Education and Community Engagement Coordinator

Young leaves clothe early hedgerow trees; 

Seeds, and roots, and stones of fruits, 

Swollen with sap put forth their shoots; 

Curled-headed ferns sprout in the lane; 

Birds sing and pair again.

- Christina Rossetti, from the poem, Spring

Support our Work on Valley Grows Day!

Valley Grows Day on May 19 is a collective giving day for small, community-based nonprofits throughout Western Massachusetts that are working to grow just and sustainable food systems for our communities. Please consider a gift to Grow Food Northampton and other participating organizations to show your support for farming and food justice in our region and to ensure that the food we grow here reaches those most in need! 

Help Grow Food Northampton meet our $30,000 goal for Valley Grows Day. 

By donating to Grow Food Northampton on Valley Gives Day, you can double your impact because we have a $15,000 match challenge!

We are grateful to Local Roots Care, a giving circle of generous local donors who have offered a dollar-for-dollar match up to $15,000 on Valley Grows Day! 

“We feel the passion, expertise, and food and land access Grow Food Northampton provides for our local food system deserves the support we and our community can be committed to.” – Local Roots Care

Donate Here NOW

If you prefer to make your donation today instead of waiting until Valley Grows Day on May 19, please write “Valley Grows Day” in the note when processing your donation online HERE.

Plant Sale this Saturday!

Visit our booth at the Northampton Education Foundation (NEF) Plant Sale this Saturday from 9-1 at Smith Vocational. NEF has been a big supporter of our Grow Food Kids and Farm to School work in the  Northampton Public Schools. Support them on Saturday by buying plants and raffle tickets. Stop by our purple tent to say hi! 

Tuesday Market is in Full Swing! 

The first three Tuesday Markets of the season have been a breath of fresh air full of abundance, inspiration, and community! Despite being early in the growing season, there's a wide range of vegetables including fleeting spring favorites like fiddleheads, asparagus, ramps, nettles and radishes. You'll also find bread, honey, maple, cheese, flowers, herbal products and lots of plant starts for your garden or planters! 

/var/folders/_g/d3x4fd7167d_mwsmw35wd7880000gn/T/ week Tuesday Market joined up with Friends of Northampton Rails and is now a partner in their Bicycle Benefits Program. A great reason to bike to market! How it works: Buy a $5 sticker at the purple market tent and put the sticker on your helmet. Every time you bike to market, stop by the purple tent to show your sticker and receive a $2.50 token as your weekly benefit. You can then spend your token on anything at the market!

/var/folders/_g/d3x4fd7167d_mwsmw35wd7880000gn/T/'re honored to once again be named Best Farmers Market in the Valley by Valley Advocate readers. Thank you to all who voted and to our amazing vendors! 

Stop by Tuesday Market every week from 1:30-6:30 in the plaza between Thornes Marketplace and the Gare Parking Garage. Change your settings at the bottom of this email to receive the weekly Tuesday Market newsletter each Monday for the latest! 

Sign Up Now: Sugar Beets and Flax: A Living History Garden

There is still space available in our upcoming workshop in collaboration with the David Ruggles Center: Sugar Beets and Flax: A Living History Garden. May 12 5:30pm-7pm. Registration here.

SNAP Shares are Now Available!

CSA Shares are still available at Crimson & Clover Farm, the “anchor farm” on Grow Food Northampton’s Community Farm. Located on Spring Street in Florence, Crimson and Clover leases 50 acres on the Community Farm. Grow Food Northampton subsidizes CSA shares for SNAP clients who pay with their benefits. Healthy Incentives Program (HIP) reimbursements are available. For SNAP Share info look here

The share runs from June through October/November, has flexible pick-up hours, pick-your-own herbs and flowers, a Farm Store, and a kids’ play area.

Volunteer with Us: Giving Garden and Food Distributions

Plant, weed, and harvest in the Giving Garden for donation to local community partner organizations! Volunteer hours are on Monday and Thursday mornings and Wednesday evenings. Open to all! Sign up required. Giving Garden volunteer hours sign up for this month.

The Community Food Distribution Project (CFDP) continued strong through the winter and spring, doing doorstep delivery to over 100 family households on Tuesdays and over 200 senior households on Thursdays. This summer, the CFDP will bring a farmers market model of produce distribution to food recipients so that everyone can pick out the fresh local veggies and produce they want regardless of financial or physical constraints. If you are interested in volunteering with our CFDP mobile markets this summer, please contact Francie

Grow Food Cooks in the News

In case you missed it, Grow Food Northampton’s Food Access Manager Francie Lin's latest article in the Daily Hampshire Gazette highlighted our successful virtual cooking class series, Grow Food Cooks. It’s a great look at how our cooking programs for kids pivoted in the pandemic and how much the program means to parents and students! 
Check it out here

Partner Shout Out!

Thank you to both the Rotary Club of Northampton and the Beveridge Family Foundation for their recent contributions to our work. We are grateful to the Rotary Club for not only donating money to the CFDP, but also spending a day helping to deliver food. Thank you, Rotary folks!

The Beveridge Family Foundation has been a supporter of our work for years. We are grateful and proud to have recently learned that they have awarded us a very generous grant to fund our food access work. 
Please DONATE to support our work!
The Giving Garden and our Food Access programs are funded by Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare.

Thanks to our featured Business Sponsors!

Curran & Keegan Financial

Copyright © 2021 Grow Food Northampton, Inc., All rights reserved.

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