Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Garden Panel

The promoters of The Garden contacted me last week to put together a discussion panel for the DC opening this weekend. As you may recall, this is the terrific documentary on the struggle to keep a community garden going in LA that we viewed at last year's Silverdocs. We'll be at the 7:15pm show this Friday, May 15 at the Landmark E Street Theatre on the corner of 11th and E. The panel discussion will take place immediately following the movie.

Kathy Jentz, Editor/Publisher, Washington Gardener Magazine

~ Katie Rehwaldt, Program Director, Seeds That Grow Hope, America the Beautiful Fund and Co-Coordinator, Rooting DC
~ Bea Trickett, Co-coordinator of the Neighborhood Farm Initiative and Rooting DC Urban Gardening Forum
~ Vinnie Bevivino, Farm Manager of the Master Peace Community Farm in Riverdale, Maryland

Bring your questions, concerns, issues etc. If the talk gets really interesting, we will move it out to the theater lobby and then maybe on to a nearby watering hole.

The Landmark E St theater is at the corner of 11th & E . It is an easy walk from the Metro Center station's 11th & G St exit. And yes, parking is very tough down there esp. on a Friday night.

I think there is an additional panel talk scheduled for another showing this weekend by another group, but I have not yet heard the details on that.


  1. Event summary:

    The opening night movie showing and panel talk went very well. We had a pretty full theater and most all stayed for the talk afterwards, which was a surprise because my experience with these kinds of things is that half the place bolts out before the credits even start to roll. We had a 20-minute panel talk and then some of us met up in the lobby for further discussion.

    Most of the audience were gardeners themselves and many did so in community garden plots. A few commented on how emotionally draining and complex the documenatry's issues are -- it touches on class and race, as well as basic human greed.

    Our paneliests shared their experiences good and bad in working in local DC community gardens.

    We talked a bit about the future of community gardening. Vinnie B commented that he thought that growing produce specifically for sale in order to sustain the gardens is the direction we are moving towards. Whereas, in the movie, the gardeners were specifically told not to sell their produce so as not to look like they were personally profiting off their plots.

    I'd be interested to continue that discussion here and invite our panelists to put in their two-cents along with anyone else who has seen the movie.

    The Garden is more a political film as opposed to one really about gardening. Still, most gardeners will be very interested in the public land-use issues and the questions it brings up about our limited shared resources.

  2. Anonymous2:15 AM

    Wow.. i like gardening..nice blog
    Thanks for sharing..@@

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