Vermont Community Garden Network
September 2015 Newsletter
Cooking in the garden is a great way to celebrate an abundant harvest, bring people together, and share food traditions and culture. Dalimaya (center) recently hosted a Nepalese cooking lesson and meal for nearly 100 gardeners and family members at the VNA Family Room Garden.
The intergenerational and multicultural event was a partnership of the Family Room,
VCGN, and HANDS (Helping And Nurturing Diverse Seniors).

All of a sudden, it feels like fall!

VCGN is thrilled to be part of so many fun harvest events, from festivals like EATxNE to garden celebrations like the Harvest Party & Potluck to gatherings focused on housing and food access like VHCB's Envisioning Vermont 2025.
There's so much to be thankful for this time of year... abundant bounty and the gardeners, farmers, and organizations who make sure that it's shared with those who need it; educators and community members who help others learn about food; and everyone who makes it possible for this work to continue.

We are especially grateful to YOU for your continued interest and support and to all the individuals and businesses who are helping us meet a special fundraising challenge. As of today, we are only $900 away from the $10,000 goal so we can receive a matching grant from the Jane B. Cook 1992 Charitable Trust. Woo hoo!

Thank you for your good garden energy, and all the best for a glorious harvest season.

~ Jess, Libby, Carolina, Denise, Trish, Lily, and Claire 
TipThe Toolshed: Tips for Garden Leaders
Cooking in the Garden 
By Libby Weiland, Statewide Network Coordinator  
As the growing season winds down, how you will celebrate the work and harvest from this year's garden? Whatever you do, don't forget the food! This month's tip focuses on cooking IN the garden. Here are some ideas to get you started. Click here to read the full Toolshed Tip.  
  1. You can cook without a kitchen. A two-burner camp stove, folding tables, and shade cloth will do just great for outdoor cooking.
  2. Keep it simple. To simplify cooking in the garden, prepare some ingredients ahead at home, such as cooking rice, soaking beans, and washing vegetables.
  3. Put the harvest in "harvest party." Plan your harvest party early enough that you can still use harvest from your garden. This can be a full garden feast or simply throwing garden chives and nasturtiums into your salad.
  4. Recognize opportunities for learning. Incorporate some educational component - i.e. cooking demos with step by step instructions, stories or fun facts about the ingredients or the recipe, visual guides such as a globe to show what part of the world recipe comes from.
Festivals and celebrations and conferences,
oh my!

Sept. 12 & 13 at the Burlington Waterfront. VCGN is one of the three nonprofits selected to be part of the Eco-village! Come say hi, play Veggie Pong, and enter to win a City Market gift basket.
EAT X NE: Sept. 19 & 20 at Oakledge Park. This festival focuses on bringing the community together to strengthen Vermont's local food movement. There will be free music, talks, tutorials, demonstrations, and kids activities along with scrumptious ticketed food and drink events, including the Brewhaha on Saturday and Great Harvest Supper on Sunday. Buy tickets now before they sell out and be sure to register for the free workshops from Vermont's best food entrepreneurs, chefs, gardeners, and champions of our local food movement. Donations will benefit VCGN, the Intervale Center, Slow Food Vermont, and Vermont FEED. (And we still need a few volunteers for the VCGN booth - sign up at )
VCGN at Cinema Casualties:
Sept. 24, 9pm. at Arts Riot. Raffle and food/drink specials to benefit VCGN at this free retro horror movie showing of The Winged Serpent.
Garden Harvest Party & Potluck: 3-6pm Sunday, Sept. 27 at Ethan Allen Homestead. Join us to celebrate the harvest season with gardeners, friends, and community members. Kids activities, garden tours, food, and music. Free Mexican street corn and ice cream for everyone. Bring a potluck dish to share or a $ donation. Join and share the Facebook event at

Vermont Housing & Conservation Board Conference Envisioning Vermont 2025: Challenges for the Next Decade: Tuesday, Oct. 6, Hilton Burlington. A mixture of workshops, discussions, field trips and speakers will provide fresh perspectives and inspiration around themes that cross the boundaries between housing and conservation such as energy, climate action, and food access. VCGN is part of the tour and discussion on food access programs that work to bring their programming to affordable housing developments.
Hands in the Dirt Film Premiere:
Wednesday,Oct. 14, 5:30-7:30pm, Black Box Theater, 60 Lake St., Burlington. "HANDS in the Dirt" is a movie that showcases a collaborative gardening project with Ethan Allen Residence (a long-term senior care home), HANDS (Helping And Nurturing Diverse Seniors), and VCGN. Appetizers and a cash bar by Penny Cluse Café, auction, and opening remarks by Charlie Nardozzi. $18 suggested donation.

Community Night at Bluebird BBQ: Wednesday, Oct. 21, Bluebird Barbecue, 317 Riverside Ave, Burlington.10% of sales will benefit VCGN, so we want to fill the house. Mention VCGN when making your reservation at ( 802) 448-3070 . We'll also be doing a special volunteer appreciation with free apps for our regular volunteers!
Become a VCGN member for discounts to Grow It! workshops, Gardener's Supply, and more!
Since 2001, the Vermont Community Garden Network (formerly known as Friends of Burlington Gardens) has worked with community and school groups to start, sustain and grow gardens, building strong local food systems and vibrant educational sites.

The monthly VCGN Newsletter provides garden-based news, resources, and events to more than 2,600 gardeners and garden leaders all over the state.

We welcome your comments and suggestions. Send your garden news and events to For even more current information and updates, connect to VCGN and other gardens on  Facebook and  Twitter.

We'd love to hear from you!

Jess Hyman, Executive Director
Libby Weiland, Statewide Network Coordinator 
Carolina Lukac, Garden Education Specialist

Trish Deschamps, Office Manager

Denise Quick, Community Teaching Garden Instructor 
Lily Sargeant, Community Teaching Garden Outreach Intern
Claire Madden, Community Teaching Garden Education Intern  
In This Issue
Bee Here Now 
Shelburne Orchards is holding the 2nd Annual Bee Here Now on Sunday, Sept. 13. Learn about the role of bees in our food production and what threatens bee populations, prize for the best-dressed "Be a Bee", check out an observation hive, and join other family-friendly activities. There will be a raffle with proceeds benefiting the Vermont Beekeepers Association, Hope Johnson will showcase her Vermont Quilt Bee handiwork and there will be mead tastings by Groennfell Meadery. Free and open to the public.
More info.

Check out the VCGN calendar for more events from all over the state.
Fall Grow It! Workshops

 More than 260 garden leaders have participated in this unique regional workshop series. Join community and school garden leaders, VCGN's Libby Weiland, and Garden Expert Charlie Nardozzi this fall:


White River Jct: Sept. 17

St. Johnsbury: Sept. 21

Milton: Oct. 6

Barre Town: Oct. 8

Manchester Center: Oct. 15


Click here for more info and registration. 
VCGN is seeking board members

Are you passionate about food access, food justice, and community building? Would you like to be part of this amazing community-based food movement? VCGN is accepting applications for its board of directors.
Click here for more info.

The Jane B. Cook 1992 Charitable Trust has awarded VCGN a special  challenge grant and we only have $900 to raise before Sept. 30th.

If we raise $10,000 in donations of $250 or more from individuals and businesses from outside Chittenden County, VT the Trust will grant us an additional $10,000!
Please consider a gift of $250 or more today to help us meet this challenge
and double your impact.

We need YOUR help to keep growing gardens, gardeners, and garden leaders. Thank you!  

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