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Local News

Plant Power!


Volunteers from Pueblo House on the East Side along with many other community groups and individuals joined in the Bradford Elementary “Science Extravaganza!” night on Thursday, February 23. Pueblo House provided seeds, soil and peat pots and helped dozens of students plant flower or vegetable seeds of their choice. In the photo, Pueblo House volunteer Catherine Calderon and Director of LocalFood Pueblo Frank Cordova help students plant seeds at the fair. The event ended with a brief drone flight demonstration by a member of the Pueblo Makers group.

Grand Gardens 


Garden teams at Ben Franklin Elementary, Minnequa Elementary, and Cesar Chavez Academy (CCA) are making progress in their garden plans. Ben Franklin got a rocky head start in its garden journey in spring 2016. Today it has beds, a fence, and irrigation lines installed at the school (see photo). Minnequa is planning to have a public “Botanical Bash” event on Saturday, March 25 (see events list below for more information). Volunteers from all over Pueblo are invited to come and donate tools and/or time to the project. Finally, CCA is planning an independent garden event on Friday, March 24 and to have a “Heroes Garden Vision Night” mid-April. Ben Franklin is planning a “Heroes Garden Vision Night” at the beginning of May.

Additionally, on March 2nd, Minnequa Elementary hosted an evening of Dr. Seuss which had an incredible turnout of students and parents. We not only collected a page full of interested volunteers for their new community garden, but also had demonstration stations that made teaching about plants fun! We had two teachers from the school and three representatives from LocalFood Pueblo to run the table which was an intense 90 minutes of planting organic seeds in recycled strawberry containers and searching for worms in a mound of dirt on a silver platter. It was seriously rewarding! We can't wait to see more community members plug into this process.


Tasty Tech
The senior students from CSU Pueblo are working hard to develop a LocalFood Pueblo application. As of last week, they are designing the interface for the app. The interface is how the app will look for the user and it will be simple and user-friendly. Included in the app will be a simple “User Guide” to help people understand the app and how to use it. This is just the very beginning of a very long journey for the LocalFood Pueblo application but it is very exciting!

Calling all Urban Farmers!

At the end of the month, Arkansas Valley Organic Growers (AVOG) in conjunction with Guidestone Colorado, will present a Vision Course for aspiring farmers and ranchers and a Scaling Up Course for existing food producers.  The Vision workshop will be held March 31 while the Scaling Up workshop will take place April 1. Both workshops will run 9AM-4PM and take place at the Excelsior Food Hub 1516 Asbury Lane, Boone, CO. If you are new to the idea or have been growing for years, there will certainly be something for everyone to learn!

Thank You!
We would like to thank everyone for following LocalFood Pueblo and contributing in whatever ways you can. If you haven’t already please follow us on Facebook, check our website, and tell your friends about us. If you would like to help out more directly, you contact us to let us know how you’re interested in helping out. Since gardening season is just around the corner, school and community gardens will be seeking members and volunteers. If you would like to volunteer regularly at a Pueblo City Schools (District 60) school, the first step is to fill out a volunteer application agreement. It can be found on the district website at: http://www.pueblocityschools.us/vips  For District 70 or other schools please contact the school for information about volunteering.
 
As a heads-up, we will likely send out a follow-up email later in the month with updates about what is going on with gardens. We know Miracle Community Garden on the south side (south of Walmart near Big Bear Liquor) is all filled up, but La Familia Community Garden on East 5th and possibly other gardens may be needing members or volunteers as well!
 

Other Noteworthy News:
Gravel vs. Garlic: Colorado farmers fight state-backed mine as urban expansion fuels demand
Colorado farmers going organic to meet rising demand

Finally...
Please check out the Pueblo Food Finder and the Master Gardener Help Line. The Pueblo Alliance for Food Access created the Food Finder to help people find food assistance in Pueblo. Feel free to print and share the flyers or list. Thank you!

Local Events

 
Title: CIWG Colorado Smelter Site Lead Fair 
When: Saturday, March 11, 2017, 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM (4 hours long)
Location: Bessemer Park Pavilion, 843 W. Northern Ave, Pueblo, CO 81004, USA (Map)
Cost: Free
Description: There will be free shacks for children 12 and under, prizes and drawings and more. The Smelter industry started in Pueblo before 1900. As a result a variety of potentially harmful agents such as lead are present in our community. Learn how to safeguard against lead and other hazards, especially if you live in or near the Colorado Smelter Site Neighborhoods.
Event Flyer: Click here for more information.
 
Title: Food Safety Class
When: Wednesday, March 15, 2017, 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM (2 hours long)
Location: Pueblo City-County Health Department, 101 W 9th Street, Pueblo, CO 81003, USA (Map)
Cost: Free
Description: A free two-hour long food safety course held by the Pueblo City-County Health Department’s Food Safety Program. For information and to RSVP call the Health Department at (719) 583-4307

Title: Cottage Foods Safety Training
When: Friday, March 24, 2017, 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM (4 hours long)
Location: CSU Extension/Pueblo County, 701 Court Street, Suite C, Pueblo, CO 81003, USA (Map)
Cost: $40
Description: This 4-hour training provides a 3-year certification and meets the food safety training requirement for Colorado Cottage Foods Act. Learn the specifics for operating a food business from a home kitchen. Review the current law, Tier 1 permissible foods and ingredient labeling requirements. Registration deadline: March 22, 2017
Event Page: http://pueblo.extension.colostate.edu/cottage-foods-safety-training/
Food Safety Blog: Click here for more information.
 
Title: All Pueblo Grows Seed Exhange
When: Saturday, March 25, 2017 @ 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM (2 hours long)
Location: Pueblo City-County Library District - Rawlings (Main) Branch, 100 E Abriendo Ave, Pueblo, CO 81004, USA (Map)
Cost: Free
Description: Join in the All Pueblo Grows Seed Library exchange meeting at 9:30 AM on Saturday, March 25. The event is FREE and bring any seeds you may have to share.
 
Title: Botanical Bash
When: Saturday, March 25th, from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM (5 hours long)
Location: Minnequa Elementary School, 1708 E Orman Ave, Pueblo, CO 81004, USA (Map)
Cost: Free
Description: Join us for an afternoon of fun and community building! We will have live music, collaborative art stations, and snacks. Guest speakers will also share information about the environment. Learn about our vision for community gardens within Pueblo County. This is a family-friendly event with adults helping to build raised beds. You do not need to live in the area to participate - get plugged in! For more information contact Dr. Kelly Gehlhoff at 719-334-9309.
Note to Volunteers: Please bring the following items on our wishlist:
wood - 2x4s, 4x6s, 2x5s or other sizes
PVC - 2.5"x3', 4.5"x6'
Compostable items (kitchen food waste)
Art supplies
Tools for building raised beds
Tools for gardening (to donate to the school)
Event flyer: Click here for more information
 
Title: Growing Vegetables Class from CSU Extension of Pueblo County
When: Monday, March 27, 2017, 6:00 PM to 8:30 PM (2.5 hours long)
Location: CSU Extension/Pueblo County, 701 Court Street, Suite C, Pueblo, CO 81003, USA (Map)
Cost: $12.50 (multiple tickets) or $15 (single ticket)
Description: Attention home gardeners! Learn tips and techniques for Growing Vegetables in your home garden from Kata Schmidt, Colorado Master Gardener with CSU Extension/Pueblo County. She'll discuss straw bale gardening, gardening in containers, composting, plant selection and irrigation. This will be a fun class! Preregistration and payment required by Friday, March 17.
Event Flyer: Click here for more information.
Event Page: http://pueblo.extension.colostate.edu/growing-vegetables/
 

Title: Western Landscape Symposium
When: Saturday, April 1, 2017 9:00 AM - 3:30 PM (6.5 hours long)
Location: Pueblo Community College, 900 W Orman Ave, Pueblo, CO 81004, USA (http://Map)
Cost: $10-$20 in advance only here.
Description: The Western Landscape Symposium is an educational forum to promote the creation of appealing and sustainable landscapes in southeastern Colorado, incorporating water wise garden practices and plants adapted to local climate and soil conditions. This year's keynote speaker David Salman, Chief Horticulturist of High Country Gardens. Other featured speakers are: Dr. Jean Reeder, Mike Bone, Irene Shonle, Blake Osborn, Carol O'Meara and Vince Urbina.
Visit www.westernlandscape.org for full event details including speaker bios and session descriptions.
 
Title: Community Garden and Food Safety Class
When: Friday, April 7, 2017, 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM (3 hours long)
Location: NeighborWorks of Pueblo, 1241 E Routt Ave, Pueblo, CO 81004, USA (Map)
Cost: Free
Description: Hosted by St. Mary Corwin Hospital and LocalFood Pueblo. Spend an afternoon learning about the necessary safety protocols for working in a community garden and handling the food harvested from it. Mark your calendars for the class now. More information including how to register for the class (free of charge) will be released soon. Check the LocalFood Pueblo events calendar on the events page of the website for updates.
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