Last week we received a note from our neighborhood email list alerting us to an upcoming urban organic vegetable gardening class series. The classes are free to the public, every Saturday from 11am - 12:30pm for 6 weeks and are taking place at the North Avenue Richmond Library. We got there about 10 minutes early which was great since the class filled up so quickly there weren't enough seats for everyone.
Victoria Campbell from the Department of Public Works helped lead this first class and even brought along one of her own backyard hens named George. Duron Chavis of Richmond's Noir Market in Battery Park also helped lead this first class, really laying out the social benefits of eating healthy and coming together as a community to build something from the ground up. Our scheduling system allows you to cancel a class up to 12 hours before the class starts without being charged for that class. Being right up our alley, we made plans to attend the first session over the weekend to find out what it was all about.

While we are most interested in learning techniques to make our personal urban space thrive as a garden, we were pleasantly surprised at how much information was given on the topic of community gardens and their overall benefits to the city.
Upon arrival, we were instructed to take one of the provided large buckets and begin collecting compost for a project we'll later undertake in the class. Mary and I would still love to try our hands at raising 3 chickens of our own, but alas, the timing still isn't right and unfortunately it's still illegal given the space parameters of our property and the fact Basil would go nutso. For example, other than lowering pollutants in the air, did you know statistics show that neighborhoods who have participated in maintaining a community garden actually see lower crime rates?
We learned where Richmond's "food deserts" are and how to become involved in organizing a new city community garden. If you cancel within 12 hours of the class starting, you will be charged for the full class and a refund or credit will not be issued. We do, however, look forward to learning more about raising urban chickens firsthand in the event all the stars fall into place down the road.

Sharing of information and images from this site is acceptable for non-commercial purposes provided that proper crediting links are included. Please plan for traffic, parking and be on time to avoid loosing your class or being charged a late cancellation fee.
FACILITY MEMBERS ONLY!  As a benefit to your child, all children checked into the playcenters or after school programs will participate in these classes. Failure to show is not fair to the instructors, or to the person that may have wanted to take your place in the class.

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