Root! Celebration 2018

Posted by on Apr 25, 2018 | Comments Off on Root! Celebration 2018

Root! Celebration 2018

On April 12th, City Schoolyard Garden hosted Root! at Jackson-Via Elementary to honor and recognize the contributions of our partners in education and in the community. Those who have gone above and beyond in support of the gardens were awarded Golden Trowels and Golden Beets. The sunny evening, although very blustery, was a beautiful way to spend time showing appreciation for our partners and volunteers in the community. We had music from local artists Travis Elliot and Tucker Rogers that helped set the stage for a relaxing evening  and spending time in the Jackson-Via garden. Guests were also treated to food and drink by such local businesses as Pearl Island FoodsCorner Juice, Marie Bette, and Roots Natural Kitchen. Guests were also given some student-led tours of the Jackson-Via garden by some very enthusiastic students. The students were so knowledgable in their tours and really were able to create an exciting image of what has been happening this year at Jackson-Via. Although early and some beds looked empty, they knew exactly which seeds and plants were in each bed. We have had some very exciting partnerships that really deserved highlighting, so buckle up for this list of amazing partnerships with our Charlottesville community!

The Golden Trowel Awards recognize both educators and community members for their equally valuable roles in maintaining the gardens. Our Golden Trowel Sponsors who, both, received and distributed Golden Trowel and Golden Beet Awards were Roxanne and Richard Booth of the Rimora Foundation, Brennan Gould of Charlottesville Area Community Foundation, and Jackie Martin of Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital.

Peter Davis, our CHS Garden Coordinator introduced some of our amazing Charlottesville teachers who have taken on major roles in the gardens. Katie, Plunkett, Greenbrier Elementary School Librarian, Nancy Rickabaugh, Johnson Elementary School 4th Grade Teacher, Christine Scott, Charlottesville High School iSTEM Coordinator, Desmond Cormier, Buford Middle School Art Teacher, and Marcy Wisbauer, Buford Middle School Family and Consumer Science Teacher were our Outstanding Educator awards this year.

We also awarded Golden Trowels for Outstanding Youth Interns to our 2017 summer interns that were hosted across Charlottesville gardens. Qena Taylor, Emmaunel Quezada-Romero, Makayla Howard, Aidan Charron, Jerome Jackson, and Bradley Ragland all received a Golden Trowel Award as well.

Also receiving the Golden Trowel Award that night were our outstanding community partners who have helped us grow throughout the last few years. Misty Graves of Community Attention Youth Internship Program (CAYIP) was the recipient of the award that evening for her work supporting  our summer youth internship program.

The other award that CSG gives out is the Golden Beet Award, recognizing superlative team service by our many volunteers. The purpose is to highlight groups of people who work together to improve CSG programming or work to accomplish the same support. This year our Golden Beet Awards went to our Harvest of the Month volunteers Jodi Darring, Kim Smyth, Elizabeth Willingham, and E.D. Rambo.  Nancy Newman and Sara Wilson also received Golden Beet Awards because of their work with garden education and maintenance that runs parallel to the CSG gardens at CCS schools.

Root! was a chance to recognize them, as well as the other invaluable community partners who share in our mission. You can see the full list of awardees here.


A hearty shout out to the Garden Tour Guides: Elise Burroughs, Teri Lamb, Audrey Breen, Alison Mamadou, Jennifer Flack, Nataleen Keh, Djamila Sanda, and Hiba Mohammed who all did an amazing job! Thanks also to Keith Freeman for our amazing photography!

City Schoolyard Garden’s mission is one of community engagement and improvement, which is impossible without the input of individuals and organizations that are members of that community. It’s vital to recognize the diversity of voices, backgrounds, and types of labor that come together in the garden. We are a city of planners, builders, and maintainers, of teachers, students, and administrators, of scientists, writers, and activists. All of this is important to the work that City Schoolyard Garden does, and we hope these awards are felt tenderly by their recipients, who deserve them more than words can express.