UA members begin new project to create community orchard

Update:  A meeting time has been set.  Learn more here.

UA member Ralph Chiodo and friends have issued an inspiring call to join their new community orchard project:

Forest Avenue Outreach is working to create Des Moines' first community orchard.  Think much more than just an orchard though––

Imagine a property with an outdoor classroom and community gathering area; someplace where fresh fruits are provided to the community for free; people are educated and empowered to go home and grow their own food; a place where youth can find job training; an outdoor kitchen where the community can come to see live cooking classes/demonstrations as well as learn about nutrition and food preservation!  Imagine a stunningly beautiful place of solace in the midst of an otherwise busy neighborhood.  Now think about doing all of this in such a way that it is reproducible - so that others can take a copy of what we have put together and, with some hard work, go create something similar.

This is exactly what we are working on creating.  We want to use this opportunity to forge a jewel in the crown of Des Moines that will draw people from near and far to our community.  Something that will showcase the exceptional cooperation and diversity of the food system network within the Des Moines Area.

Now that we have a vision, it is time to start creating a plan to make this a reality.  We are looking for individuals and organizations who want to be part of this exciting community project.  You are receiving this email because we believe that you may be interested in partnering with us on this project. 

We are working to schedule a strategic planning meeting in the very near future and would like to invite you to be a part of the planning.  Below is a link to a scheduling website called Doodle.  When you click the link, please enter you name and email address then check the dates that you would be available for the meeting.  Remember, these dates are for only one meeting.  After everyone interested has completed the poll, we will determine which date is best for the most people and notify everyone.

Update:  A meeting time has been set.  Learn more here.

We look forward to working with you on this exciting project!