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Daniel Boone Gardens Hosts Free “Lunch & Learn”

July 6, 2012. The Daniel Boone Native Gardens will host “Lunch & Learn” on Thursday, July 12, with master gardener B. R. Hoffman. This free program at noon will highlight “Organic Gardening for your Home.”

Hoffman was among the first in the nation to teach a class at ASU based on Alice Water’s, Edible Schoolyard concept.

Meet at the Pickin Porch.

The Gardens are located next to Horn in the West in Boone. Formed in 1963, the Gardens are sponsored by the Garden Club of North Carolina.

For more information, visit www.danielboonenativegardens.org/.

About the Edible Schoolyard concept

The Edible Schoolyard was founded in 1995 in a vacant lot at the Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School, in Berkeley. It started as the brainchild of Alice Waters, owner of the renowned restaurant Chez Panisse, located just a few blocks from the school. Since its founding, ESY has been the primary project supported by the Chez Panisse Foundation, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization founded by Waters to celebrate the 25th birthday of Chez Panisse. The Foundation continues to play an important role in the operations of ESY. The Foundation and ESY are funded primarily through grants and donations.

In 1994, Waters, who recognized potential in the unused plot of land in back of the school, met with Neil Smith, then the principal of King Middle School, to discuss the possibility of transforming the space into a garden project that would involve students, teachers, and community.

Planning for the Edible Schoolyard garden and after-school cooking classes began in 1995, and were offered in the 1995-1996 school year. The first Edible Schoolyard summer program was offered at the end of this school year. The cooking programs at King used organic produce from a local farm until 1997, when they started using the crops harvested from the now thriving Edible Schoolyard garden. During the 1996-1997 school year, the Edible Schoolyard opened the refurbished Kitchen Classroom, which provided space and equipment for in-school cooking classes.

During the 1998-1999 school year, two Americorps positions were added to the garden and kitchen staff at King Middle School. These positions were established to support that kitchen and garden classes that were now taking place for all 6th, 7th, and 8th graders. In 1999, the Berkeley Unified School District adopted a school food policy that emphasized the use of organic foods in school lunches.

In 2004, the Berkeley Unified School District joined with the Center for Ecoliteracy, the Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Center, and the Chez Panisse Foundation to establish the School Lunch Initiative, a comprehensive program that encompassed school lunch reform in conjunction with the ongoing kitchen and garden programs at Berkeley Unified District schools. The initiative emphasized the connection between food education, improved school food, and student knowledge relating to food choices. Also in 2004, Ann Cooper was hired to direct the food service program for the Berkeley Unified School District. Processed foods were largely eliminated from the school lunch menu, and local produce became central to all school meals.