Anne French, left, Jennifer Munoz and Mayor Richard Alcombright sit on the new bench donated by Storey Publishing.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Community members, Storey Publishing employees and more met to celebrate the progress of the community garden across the street from Porches Inn on River Street and a freshly donated bench from Storey.
"I'm hoping it'll be a little town green," said Jennifer Munoz, referring to the grass currently occupied by a public brick oven, some seats, a bench and the garden. "It's looking good today."
Munoz, Storey President Pam Art and Mayor Richard Alcombright spoke highly of the project and the community's commitment to it.
"It's such an important program for North Adams to learn about gardening," Art said. Art also praised Munoz's commitment to working on the gardens, which she noted raised more than 300 pounds of food for the community's food pantries last year, a number she expects to exceed by far.
"She's a force of nature, and a force of gardening in North Adams."
Dan O. Williams, above, cuts up fresh bread cooked in the wood-fueled brick oven. Munoz, below, picks green beans from the garden.
Anne French, the service learning coordinator at North Adams Public Schools, praised the students involved in the process. She noted that Drury High School pupils in Keith Davis' classes created and built the garden beds. Students in his Computers, Animation and Design course created precise 3D models of the beds and his construction class built and installed them.
French, as well as others, also said the neighborhood gardening program is very useful to pupils in all the schools. At the elementary schools, the pupils also help out with the gardens.
The project also aims to direct more attention to the Hoosic River, which separates the garden from Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art's space.
"We're trying to bring back interest to the river," Munoz said.
Alcombright said teenagers involved in the Hoosic River Revival wanted to start this project, and as it picked up steam the community joined in.
Storey Publishing employees joined together with the fellow gardeners to provide locally grown food. One of the most notable features of the space a wood-fueled brick oven that is open to the public.
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