Local Government Allows Farming on Village Owned Property, Yes!

And now, more insight from our pal Gina of MySkinnyGarden:

I met Jessica on the Internet. There, I said it.  I know it sounds weird but we both had garden blogs and somehow found each other and learned we lived just blocks apart in Forest Park and that we were both originally from Tennessee.  Within 12 months of meeting, we’d partnered to start Forest Park Community Garden. I have never met anybody so easy to work with. Not only did we share a vision about creating a local community garden but the synergy between us was amazing, comfortable, fast!

While writing this blog post for Green Home Experts it occurred to me that I’ve never really talked to Jessica about her gardening experiences prior to when I met her. I just know that ever since then she’s been on fire trying to figure out a way to make a living doing something she loves. Urban agriculture.

This year Jessica started Forest Park Mini Farm, a small farm located on a piece of land owned by the Village of Forest Park and leased to her for growing herbs, flowers and fresh, organic produce. Jessica sells what she grows at Forest Park Farmers Market every Friday evening and she is also offering shares of her harvest for sale just like large-scale Community Supported Agriculture farms do and she’ll even deliver to your home for free if you live in the area.

I am proud of Jessica for relentlessly pursuing her urban agriculture dream and for her innovation in working with local government to utilize the empty land they own to provide space for eager farmers like Jessica. Most communities have these parcels of land waiting to be developed and allowing them to be farmed in this way is a very safe investment that sends a strong message to the community that they support residents with this entrepreneual spirit and a lot of sweat equity to give. It’s cliché but it nobody loses here.

Jessica still has a few shares available for her Community Supported Agriculture program which starts this coming Friday July 20th. If you live in the Oak Park, River Forest or Forest Park area, you can’t get much more local than purchasing produce from this exciting new mini farm. If you decide not to buy a share, be sure to stop by the Forest Park Farmers Market on Friday evening 3:30 – 7:30 at The Grove where you can buy Jessica’s produce and beautiful flowers, in person.

(And a note from Maria, GHE Queen Bee: I subscribed to Jessica’s CSA and can’t wait to get my first share on Friday!)

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