Congratulations to Adam, Jovantae, Shaquille, Jarvis, Cortez and Rodrick! The Smart Mules have been awarded the National Garden Association grant to continue and improve their incredible work.
Stay tuned for more information about supporting this project, the Christian Brothers University garden, and the Memphis Urban Farm School!
Read this article and click on the links for a brief introduction to the nature of project we're envisioning for Memphis. Ours is "market creation" and business incubation. Not just economic gardening, which refers to tending to existing businesses and helping them grow (as opposed to typical economic development, which uses incentives to attract business from out of town). We aim not just to nurture and grow local business, but to start them and create the market for them as well.
Scott Dunscombe noted on Twitter that this article I wrote about how cities ought to look beyond high-tech for this economic destiny has a fair amount in common with what Portland mayoral candidate Jefferson Smith calls "economic gardening." And in fact, though I didn't use the phrase in the piece...
Hey Mary--we're coordinating with the event organizers on the details now, and will keep you posted. When the announcement is ready, we'll make sure to let everyone here on Neighborland know.
MemFix is an all day event... so, when will it be announced? And where, precisely?
Hey everybody! It's November 1st (time flies), and the period for sharing ideas and demonstrating support has now closed. Thank you for sharing your idea with the community.
The National Garden Association will announce the grant recipient at Memfix: Cleveland Street, a community event on Saturday, November 10th. Come out to Crosstown for a day of civic minded fun, and learn how you can support the winning project.
So, it's November 1st... when do we find out which idea will be funded?
Thanks everyone for all of your "me too's." The support we've received and the visibility this has generated have been tremendous for moving the project along while the Neighborland challenge has been going on. Winning NGA's grant would really help move this project from concept to reality.
As you know, we're trying to put something together that very few cities have attempted. We believe this kind of "economic gardening" initiative is exactly what is needed in Memphis. Our focus is on the resilience of the local food economy and building prosperity from the ground up, literally, by making unproductive parcels productive and incubating a sustainable local food economy starting with urban farming entrepreneurs. The concept is huge and could be transformative. So all of your support is very much appreciated. Thank you!
I think this is a fantastic idea, especially considering how starved our society is for time doing meaningful things. Getting our hands dirty, tending something that grows, and having something to show for it is a beautiful miracle. And I love, love, love that it's grassroots. That matters to me.