Partnerships Feed Our Community

The Riley Park Farmers Market provides Little Mountain Neighbourhood House with a Donation Station in the market every month.  The farmers and shoppers donate produce and funds to support our community kitchen and cooking programs for vulnerable populations served by the House.

 

On June 23, donations supported the Newcomers Community Kitchen. With an estimated 15 lbs of produce, our Kitchen Facilitator, Marta Ramos, and her group cooked soups, vegetable pakoras and salads for this community. The 15 people participating in the kitchen were immigrants and newcomers from China, Korea, Mexico, Indonesia, Chile, Peru and Spain, all amazed at how flavourful and tasty the dishes were as, for some, it was their first time eating organic produce.

Our next donation station is Saturday, July 21. Feel free to stop by our booth and learn more about how the garden and Little Mountain Neighbourhood House works to support immigrant and newcomer communities.

Minister of Justice Drops By for Garden Day at Riley Park Community Garden

Riley Park Community Garden’s first Garden Day celebration was a big hit! Volunteers started off the day by digging elbows-deep into general garden maintenance before being rewarded by a tasty honey potluck. From baklava to pancakes, community members used the honey theme to show off dishes from their home countries, while the Honey Shoppe provided a honey tasting.

Park Board Commissioner Michael Wiebe and Minister of Justice (and enthusiastic garden supporter) Jody Wilson-Raybould were among those who partook in the lunch, with the latter receiving a Riley Park bouquet from our resident Master Gardener afterward. The day wound down with kids and adults alike coming together to build a pollinator hotel, thanks to guidance from Hayley Trachsel of Climate Guides, which will eventually host a community of mason bees.

A jam-packed day, it was a great way to kick off a summer full of events! Find out what we have planned for the coming weeks by checking out our event calendar and signing up for the newsletter.  

Welcome to our summer garden coordinators!

Riley Park Community Garden is happy to introduce our two new garden coordinators, Wendee Lang and Henry Campbell. You’ll see the two of them around the field house and at events throughout the season – be sure to say hello!

A little bit about them:

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Wendee is a UBC student currently pursuing a Master of Community and Regional Planning. A nature enthusiast, she’s delighted to join the garden and to support its work in the community. 

 

 

 

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Henry is a Vancouver Technical grad living in the heart of East Van. Passionate about the environment and its relation to humans, he is excited to work with the garden and to help it grow.

Come to Garden Day this Saturday in Riley Park!

Schedule:

10:00 am – 12:00 pm Work Party

10:00 am – 2:00 pm Donation Station in the Farmers Market

10:00 am – 2:00 pm Scavenger Hunt in the Market for Kids

12:30 pm – 2:00 pm 'Honey Lunch' - Honey-themed potluck (other dishes not made with honey welcome)

1:00 pm – 2:30 pm Honey Shoppe Honey Tasting

1:30 pm – 3:00 pm Build the "Pollinator Hotel" with Climate Guides and SPEC

A collaborative event between the Riley Park Community Garden and the Riley Park Famers Market, Garden Day in Riley Park is a time to visit and share your  knowledge and passion for gardening and learning more about where our food comes from and who grows it.

Join our Riley Park Community Garden Work Party, the Riley Park Farmers Market and our Scavenger Hunt for Kids (featuring a demo bee hive), Pollinator Workshop and more. Garden Day in Riley Park will have you learning, growing and sharing about the community's gardens and farmers market culture and history.

Member of Parliament and garden supporter, Jody Wilson-Rabould, will also be in attendance from 12-2 to check out our many pollinator-friendly activities.

Bee there!

Watering Our Garden; Kids Activities at Work Parties

Help!  We need to keep our garden watered.  Email info@rileyparkgarden.org to sign up for a morning or evening watering time.  Thank you, Amy and Atong, for watering our common area and your beds.  The whole garden needs to be watered. This is a community garden.  There are hoses and sprinklers for you to use.  

We want to have kids activities in the garden.  A couple of the Little Mountain Softball League little players and bed member kids are coming to the garden to get their hands in the dirt.  

This Saturday, May 26, we have Potato Planting with Anya and Stone Painting with Rebecca.  10-2. 

ReWilders at the Park Board Tree Sale

 

The ReWilders were at it again with fifty kits of native plants going to good homes.  Thanks to the Vancouver Foundation, we were able to provide plants and education to residents coming to pick up their new trees.
Michael led a walk through our Riley Park woodland, 'west beach', and rewilder beds.  Tamara shared seed blends for alternatives to regular grass, sedum mats and a living roof, which was installed by volunteers on our Produce Library.  Thanks to Nat's Nursery Wholesale and West Coast Seeds for having such great staff, resources and products.



 

'New possibilities' by Marieke van der Velden

I originally started to look for a community garden plot in Vancouver at the start of 2016. Full, full and full. A few of the gardens kept waitlists. One of the responses I got when emailing to get on that list "I am confirming that you are definitely interested in being added to the waitlist as it will be approximately an 8-year wait". Sure, why not was my response. In the end it all worked out, that was my year of hiking every and all weekend.

But last year a car accident stopped my hiking in it's tracks and my body and spirit needed something new. By chance, through a friend of a friend, I learned about a new community garden that was being built. Although the plots were reserved for groups, they were welcoming to individual members to help with the garden at large. One weekend at the end of June I joined a work party in the garden and two hours later I was invited to share a remaining garden bed with some other individuals. I rejoiced!

Digging in the dirt is better than therapy for me.  For the rest of the summer and into the fall, the garden became a place not just to ease my mind and gently move my body, but also where I could find connection with the fellow gardeners, make friends and enjoy the most incredible potlucks I've ever experienced. I've gone there after actual therapy session to regroup and re-centre myself by getting some dirt under my finger nails. I've danced in the garden, read books and of course, grow food like tomatoes, zucchini and herbs.

You can have all the plans in the world, but sometimes the universe makes other plans. What I learned is that you should have faith that it will give you something you need in return. When I didn't just want, but needed, a community garden - it appeared. With a community, and friends. I met people (including one of my favorite people in the world) who I would not have met had I not been on this path and who make me grateful that I am.

Keep your heart open to new possibilities.

Here's to another exciting year at the Riley Park Community Garden. I will see you there!

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