Monday, October 06, 2008

DC School Garden Week - Grow Kids Grow!

It is the start of the DC School Garden Week. This morning was the kick-off event at Ann Beers Elementary in SE DC. Sandra Nitchie, Monarch Sister Schools Program, and Jim Gallion, Wildlife Gardening Adventures, were there putting in a butterfly labyrinth and garden with the children. Both Jim and Sandra have been featured in our magazine as butterfly gardening experts. It was inspirational to see them part of the transformation that is making a compacted piece of yard into a place of learning and growth that will touch the lives of many children for decades to come.

I had the fun task of presenting the winners of the DC School Garden Photo Contest that I helped judge. Click on the DCUrbanGardener's site links below to see the winners:
Category I: Kindergarten-2nd Grade
Category II: 3rd-5th Grade
Category III: 6th-8th Grade
Category IV: 9th-12th Grade
The grand prize winning photo is pictured above - it was taken by Melissa Wood of Horace Mann School. I don't know about my fellow judges -- professional photographers Stephen Brown and Steve O'Toole, bloggers Ed Bruske and Christa Carignan, and gardening coach Susan Harris -- but I had a very tough time deciding on my top picks this year. I hope next year the number and quality of submissions increase even further and make it even harder for all of us judges.

Don't miss all the other great DC School Garden Week events including the Capitol Hill Walking Tour of School Gardens on Saturday, October 11. Three elementary schools in the Capitol Hill area welcome you to an "open garden." In this self-paced walking tour, discover how three different elementary schools in the Capitol Hill area are planning and planting educational gardens and greening their schoolyards. Visit one or visit all three, but come away with new ideas. Come anytime from 10:00am-12:00pm. Locations: Brent ES (301 North Carolina Ave, SE), Tyler ES (1001 G St, SE), and Watkins ES (420 12th St, SE)
Information: Contact Cheval Force Opp or call 703-395-1501.

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