Thinking big-a Renton community farm?

21 Acres

Today I was invited to speak at the Board meeting for the Renton Community Foundation on behalf of Sustainable Renton and our work around community gardens, education, and supporting a healthy, local food system. They are currently looking at different ways of addressing issues surrounding hunger in our community. The Foundation is an important supporter of local non-profits and charities in our community, and I felt privileged to be able to speak with them.

While speaking with the Board, there were conversations around the impact community gardens have on a community, how livestock and poultry fit into the picture, and how education is a pivotal piece in people eating healthier lifestyles. I shared with them the inspiring story of 21 Acres (http://21acres.org/). 21 Acres, located just outside downtown Woodinville, is an agricultural and environmental learning center that has a community garden, a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), a community food kitchen, classes on sustainability, and a farmer’s market.

This got me to thinking-What would a center like this look like in Renton? Would it have livestock-like chickens or goats or rabbits? Would it have a community garden? How about a community food kitchen? What about a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture)? How about a meeting space for classes on gardening, canning, food drying, cooking with vegetables? The possibilities for creating an inspiring, community-building center like this are limitless.

A bigger question is: what would it take to make this happen? Who are the stakeholders in a project like this? Could partnerships with the Salvation Army Food Bank, King County Conservation District, and other local organizations pull together a project of this scale? Is there land available to support a farm of this nature in our suburban town?

What are your thoughts? How would you like to be involved with a sustainable community model like 21 Acres in Renton? Please share your thoughts!

Let’s see where this idea takes us.

-Chris Conkling

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Sustainable Renton

Sustainable Renton is fostering a healthier community and planet.

4 thoughts on “Thinking big-a Renton community farm?”

  1. Thanks a lot pertaining to composing your current post Thinking big-a Renton community farm? | Sustainable Renton Blog . I didn’t know this info, and so i could keep the idea useful now so I can research it in the foreseeable future.

  2. Strangely enough, I have been thinking about proposing this sort of thing to my church in renton. The back lawn is large enough for a community garden though not animals. And we would have plenty of meeting space! The vicarage used to have hens on it but it is now housing a different family so I don’t know if they would be interested in that sort of thing.
    On the other hand, some of the primary and secondary schools in the area have unused or low use lawn areas. The drawback to those is many of them have had fertilizers and pesticides used on them regularly.

    1. Lizzyz-A number of churches in our community are showing interest in developing gardens on their property. Calvary Baptist Church off Sunset has already successfully achieved this last year. Perhaps a discussion night w/ their garden coordinator about thow they achieved this is in order?

      And the Renton School District will be actively promoting the development of school gardens (Renton Park elementary is already building one!) from here on out.

      Great ideas-thanks for sharing!

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