“Helping turn Teachers into Gardeners” March 26, 2013 The Washington Post
Spring brings one of the best parts of gardening: choosing and buying seeds. It’s a time of excitement and promise, a safe distance away from the hard work of actual gardening. The planting. The weeding. More weeding. Not to mention the disappointment of losing half of your berries or tomatoes or peppers to aggressive squirrels. It’s the same with school gardens, which have become all the rage since first lady Michelle Obama planted an organic garden on the White House lawn four years ago. No one tracks how many schools now have gardens; the U.S. Department of Agriculture is undertaking a survey this year. But at last count there were 82 in the District alone.
“Fruit & Vegetable Rx” July 24, 2012 NBC 4 Washington
A new program gives patients a prescription to buy produce at some farmers markets in the District… Janet Lopez is a cashier at a sporting goods store and lives in Washington, D.C. with her two children, brother and mother. She said they all have been eating more fruits and vegetables because of the program. “It is an encouragement because now I actually see that my kids love all of this stuff and before I couldn’t get it because it wasn’t cheap. Not only that but I also didn’t know how healthy it actually is,” Lopez said.
“District’s Needy Get Fruit And Vegetable RX” June 20, 2012 The Washington Post
Every Wednesday, as many as 45 people, ages 12 to 70, meet at the Unity Health Care Upper Cardozo clinic for the weekly meeting of We Can. The program welcomes low-income families that struggle with obesity or chronic disease. On some nights, there are cooking classes; on others, participants do yoga. Every week, they receive plenty of information about how to develop a more healthful lifestyle by shopping smarter, exercising and eating more fruits and vegetables.
Some local clinics and nonprofits are about to start convincing patients that fresh produce may actually be just what the doctor ordered. Through a grant from the national nonprofit Wholesome Wave, some D.C. doctors will write prescriptions for fruits and vegetables to be redeemed at area farmers markets.
“Glover Park Burleith Farmers Market Is Open For Business” May 13, 2012 Washington Examiner
It was a beautiful, sunny day to enjoy the outdoors by visiting a farmer’s market. The Glover Park-Burleith Farmers Market, located at Hardy Middle School parking lot, is now open for business. On Saturday, May 12th, residents and visitors dropped by to shop, eat, and play.
With the District’s 2013 budget set to be released March 23, farmers market advocates made a last-minute appeal to Mayor Gray for $150,000 to help fund incentive programs for low-income shoppers. Incentive programs double the purchasing power for families and individuals in need of fresh produce by matching their federal nutrition assistance, such as SNAP, WIC and the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program. Shoppers can spend $5 dollars of their federal benefits and receive $10 in wooden chips to purchase fresh fruits, vegetables, eggs and meat.
“Rethinking School Lunch” December 15, 2011 Life, Liberty & the Pursuit of Fresh Food
School lunches in D.C. are getting a makeover. Think chefs cooking from scratch with herbs; rows of lettuce and berry bushes growing in a school farm; and kids telling their parents about the nutritional benefits of fresh food.
Compared to the rest of the country, “D.C. is a shining example of what a school district can do to make the food better,” said Ed Bruske, a food blogger and a parent of a DCPS student.
“Educators Show Off Nature’s Classroom During D.C. Garden Tour” October 1, 2011 The Washington Post
As she waited to interview for the principal’s job at Center City’s Trinidad charter school, Evie Wiseman noticed the raised beds outside the school’s doors, which held herbs and blooming vegetables. The touch of nature impressed Wiseman, who thought it was a good sign for the city school she hoped to lead. Wiseman got the job. At the helm, she has supported the school’s two gardens, which she showed off Saturday during the annual D.C. Schoolyard Greening tour. “It’s the perfect metaphor for what we do here. We grow plants, and we’re also growing minds and creating scholars,” Wiseman said. “The garden is bright, and that reflects our student body and our school.”
“Harvesting Farmers’ Markets” July 5, 2011 Georgetown.Patch.com
As the localized food movement picks up steam, city dwellers have to get creative in order to jump on board. Luckily, the D.C. region is fairly ahead of the curve when it comes to one component that provides fresh, local produce – the farmers’ market. These markets are so prolific both inside and just outside the district that even tiny Georgetown has two of its own – the Georgetown Farmers Market and the Glover Park-Burleith Farmers’ Market.
“THE 3-MINUTE INTERVIEW: Lauren Shweder Biel” May 5, 2011 Washington Examiner
Biel is executive director of D.C. Greens, a nonprofit that manages the Glover Park-Burleith Farmers’ Market. The market, located in the Hardy Middle School parking lot on Wisconsin Avenue, opens this weekend. It runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Saturday. Proceeds go to school garden programs in the District.
Following the Organic Wave, Stoddert Elementary Plants its Garden” March 20, 2011 Georgetown.Patch.com
When volunteers arrived at 10 a.m. Saturday morning, they gathered around a barren 4,000 square foot patch of land bordered by a wooden fence. By early afternoon the students, parents and teachers of Stoddert Elementary completely transformed the space, building the school’s first educational garden. “This is so exciting for us,” said Sarah Bernardi, a board member of DC Greens, the nonprofit that funded the project and provided much of its logistical support. “After a year of planning, it’s amazing to see it finally coming together.”
“Families Turn Out For A School Garden Raising” March 20, 2011 The Slow Cook
Months of planning resulted in a new garden at my daughter’s elementary school yesterday as parents, teachers and kids all pitched in to dig beds, haul compost and spread wood chips. The masterminds behind construction of the Stoddert Elmentary School garden in Glover Park are two women who live in the neighborhood–Lauren Biel and Sarah Bernardi–who just happen to be passionate about school gardens.
“Glover Park Burleith Farmers’ Market Near The Top In A National Contest” July 19, 2010 The Georgetown Dish
Only in its second year, the Glover Park-Burleith Farmer’s Market is a front runner to win the title of “America’s Favorite Farmer’s Market” from the American Farmland Trust. The local favorite, which is competing in the small market category, currently has 233 votes, putting it behind only two farmer’s markets in its category.
“Faces of the Farm” July 14, 2010 The Georgetowner
It’s worth the trip up Wisconsin to this Georgetown newcomer, just two years old but already ahead of the pack in its community outreach efforts, not to mention its role as a hub for Georgetown, Glover Park and Burleith neighbors out for a Saturday stroll with family, friends or the pooch. Executive Director Lauren Biel and team, who manage the market through a non-profit known as D.C. Greens, have worked overtime to make the market an engaging community center, bringing in bluegrass musicians, jugglers and even a road bike technician.