This spring, the Green Bay Packers will join the Brown County UW-Extension to support several community gardening initiatives to raise awareness of the importance of food security, decrease hunger and promote healing and community.
The Brown County UW-Extension Community Gardens Program empowers all county residents to grow healthy food by providing resources and organizational capacity. The Packers will join in this effort beginning in May with three different programs: the Veterans’ Garden, the Green Bay Garden Blitz and the Planting for Purpose program.
On May 9, in conjunction with the Brown County UW-Extension and the Green Bay Vet Center, the Packers will help break ground on the first year of a new Veterans’ Garden on Emmet Street on Green Bay’s west side. The Green Bay Vet Center will utilize the garden for outdoor therapeutic classes and promoting community among the veterans it serves.
Packers President/CEO Mark Murphy will be on hand for the groundbreaking ceremony, as well as Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt, Brown County Executive Troy Streckenbach along with Vet Center and UW-Extension representatives. The ceremony will take place on Emmet Street in Green Bay at 9 a.m.
Following the groundbreaking, Packers employees will join in a day of volunteering for the semi-annual Packers Give Back Day. Volunteers will build garden beds, construct and paint the shed and gazebo, assemble the water tank and compost tumbler and create a path, all to help assist the Vet Center with the Veterans’ Garden’s first year.
Additionally, the Packers will work together with the Brown County UW-Extension on two other gardening projects this spring, the Green Bay Garden Blitz and Planting for a Purpose.
The Green Bay Garden Blitz, a partnership between UW-Extension and New Leaf Foods, Inc., is an initiative that empowers people to grow their own food and be part of a sustainable urban agricultural system by selling, building, and installing raised garden beds in the community. Packers employees will volunteer during Packers Give Back Day by building garden boxes for the Garden Blitz, some of which will be distributed for a reduced fee to low-income families and organizations who serve them to have the opportunity to grown their own food.
The Packers and Brown County UW-Extension are also working together for Planting for a Purpose, a program that encourages gardeners to plant a garden plot and donate fresh produce to local food pantries.
Planting for a Purpose will kick off on May 11 with a “plant and pledge” event from 4 to 6 p.m., at the Brown County UW-Extension building at 1150 Bellevue St., Green Bay. Gardeners are encouraged to attend the event to sign up for Planting for a Purpose and learn about food pantries to which they can donate. Those attending who sign up can also receive a free pair of gardening gloves, while supplies last.
Interested gardeners also can sign up and learn more at http://browncountycommunitygardens.org.
About Green Bay Packers Give Back:
Packers Give Back is the Packers’ all-encompassing community outreach initiative, which includes the Green Bay Packers Foundation, appearances made by players, alumni, coaches and staff, youth football outreach, cash and in-kind donations, Make-A-Wish visits, and community events.
About Brown County UW-Extension Community Gardens Program:
Since 1996, the Brown County UW-Extension Community Gardens Program has provided garden space and logistical assistance to county residents, empowering them to grow affordable, nutritious, and culturally appropriate food. For more information, please visit http://browncountycommunitygardens.org.