CAC Garden Days to visit two Fitchburg Gardens
The Community Action Coalition of South Central Wisconsin will hold its second annual Garden Days event Sept. 13-15 and will include two gardens in Fitchburg, Fitchburg Fields and Blackhawk Church Food Pantry Garden.
The Garden Days event began years ago as a bike ride, but changed to its current format when organizers realized they were reaching a limited group.
“We found [the bike ride] was too limiting,” CAC Food and Gardens Division Manager Chris Brockel said.
Last year, the event saw more than 400 people turn out, and Brockel said they are hoping for “similar or bigger” this year.
“For us, the model really is about community development, it’s about bringing people together in the community…for the purpose of learning to work together, learning about each other, learning how to lead the garden,” he said. “The act of digging in dirt is a great equalizer.”
Neither Fitchburg Fields nor the Blackhawk Church Food Pantry garden are typical “community gardens,” Brockel said, but instead are used to grow food for local food pantries.
Blackhawk is actually the largest food pantry garden in their network, according to Brockel. That network, which includes other gardens around the area, had a goal of 100,000 pounds of food for food pantries last year, and surpassed that by over 40,000 pounds.
“It’s amazing that people are willing to do that kind of work in a garden and then not reap the benefits,” Brockel said. “The good feeling it creates in them is totally worth their blood, sweat and tears of getting out in that garden.”
Fitchburg Fields will be open Saturday, Sept. 14 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., while Blackhawk Church will be open 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. the same day.
A full list of participating gardens and what activities will take place at each is available at the CAC website, cacscw.org.