Urban Agriculture in Kingston, NY

Kingston Urban Agriculture Committee Sponsors Out-Door Film “Growing Cities: A Film About Urban Farming In America” on September 23rd.

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The Kingston YMCA Farm Project celebrates its first year as a working “farm”. The community is invited to a harvest party and film screening of “Growing Cities (a film about urban farming in America)” on Tuesday, September 23rd starting at 5:30pm.

Kingston, NY –  The Kingston YMCA Farm Project located behind the YMCA just off of Susan and Summer Streets in Kingston invites the community to celebrate its first successful year of farming on Tuesday, September 23rd 2014. Activities for children, music food and an auction begin at 5:30pm. An outdoor screening of  “Growing Cities – a film about urban farming in America” sponsored by the Kingston Urban Agriculture Committee will begin at 7:30pm. The event is free to all with a suggested tax deductible donation of $10 for adults / $5 for kids that will go towards the farms’ educational programs in 2015.

“This first season at the Kingston YMCA Farm Project has been a wonderful success,” says KayCee Wimbish, a first generation organic farmer, educator and founder of the YMCA Farm Project.  “I have had wonderful community support and positive reactions across the board.  The farm has produced a bountiful harvest and many children and young people have gotten hands on experience growing food and trying new vegetables.”

In its first year on a 1/4 acre, the YMCA Farm Project has harvested conservatively 1200 pounds of produce between June – August. With a longer growing season, Wimbish expects to continue to produce through late October. At any given time, the farm serves between 25-40 people weekly through their farm stand that operates out of the YMCA on Broadway, a real crossroads in midtown Kingston with a high volume of food traffic as well as a new mobile market that travels throughout the City of Kingston offering the farm’s produce.

The mobile market is a new effort in Kingston’s Urban Agriculture movement, attempting to bring produce to community centers and to underserved communities.  The goal is to make it as easy as possible for people to eat fresh, local and chemical free food. Cycled by Wimbish with help from youth participating in “The Dig Kids”, the mobile market visits locations throughout the city that includes: The Oncology Support Center, Yosman Towers and the Kingston Public Library.  Both the mobile market and the YMCA Farm Stand accepts SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) and Farmer’s Market Nutrition Program checks.

The YMCA Farm Project also hosts a number of programs that include “The Dig Kids (an urban farming program) (a program of Family of Woodstock’s Kingston Cares with support from Larrecca Music Management and Croswell Enterprises) that selects youth through an application process to be paid a small stipend while learning farming practices, the YMCA’s School’s Out Afterschool program, YMCA’s Camp Starfish and Little Farmers Story Time and Garden Play.

“In 2015 I hope to deepen my educational programming and work with more community groups.” Wimbish adds. “There is still a lot of work to do in terms of educating people about the existence of the farm and its programs.  I am eager to grow the farm so that it truly is a great community resource for Kingston.”

The Kingston YMCA Farm Project Community Harvest Party & Film Screening will occur on Tuesday, September 23rd beginning at 5:30pm with children’s activities, music, food and an auction. The film “Growing Cities – a Film about Urban Farming in America” will be shown outdoors at 7:30pm and is sponsored by the Kingston Urban Agriculture Committee with support from Family of Woodstock, O+ Festival, Kingston Land Trust, Kingston Transition, NY, and the Local Economies Project of the New World Foundation.

For more information, contact Kaycee Wimbish at the YMCA Farm Project at:  845/332-2927

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About the film “Growing Cities (a film about urban farming in America) – In their search for answers, filmmakers Dan Susman and Andrew Monbouquette take a road trip and meet the men and women who are challenging the way this country grows and distributes its food, one vacant city lot, rooftop garden, and backyard chicken coop at a time. Join them as they discover that good food isn’t the only crop these urban visionaries are harvesting. They’re producing stronger and more vibrant communities, too.

About the Kingston YMCA Farm Project – The Kingston YMCA Farm Project’s mission is to educate and empower young people by directly engaging them in sustainable food production on an urban farm.  Participants will learn and practice the skills needed to produce their own food and to make healthy choices throughout their lifetime, while increasing the community’s access to fresh produce.

The mobile market bicycle and trailer were made possible through Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Creating Healthy Places with support from Rondout Savings Bank.

Support for Educational programming has been provided by Alcoa.

About the Kingston Urban Agriculture Committee – The Urban Agriculture Committee (UAC) is charged to promote community-based, small-scale, entrepreneurial farming by providing education and technical assistance to people interested in urban farming through research and policy development aimed at making urban farming an integral part of a lively and viable cityscape, and through working with our community to embrace and support urban farms.

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