Collaborative spirit is flourishing at Medley Park, where work is under way on amenities for Golden Valley's first public community garden. The City is co-sponsoring a painting and ribbon cutting event Sat, Aug 13, 10 am–2 pm at Medley Park. The event is free and open to all.
The City first floated ideas for a community garden in 2019 as part of a park improvement project. Rather than removing Medley Park's failing tennis courts, the City developed a concept to build 40 raised garden beds on the court surface. Existing fencing would provide a secure site, and water bibs, a compost bin, a tool shed, and planting tables would round out the project.
What started as a garden variety municipal park project has blossomed into something more fertile, thanks to Michelle Christensen, a 27-year Golden Valley resident. She learned about the project from Parks & Recreation Director Rick Birno and started planting seeds.
First, Christenson won a $10,000 “Make Every Block Better” grant from H&R Block/NextDoor—one of 10 awarded nationally from more than 3,000 applications. They are intended to create projects that bring neighbor(hood)s together and build bridges within the community.
The grant funded materials to build an ADA-compliant Share Shed that will contain tools (shovels, rakes, spades, etc) available for all gardeners to use. It will also fund all said tools, wheelbarrows, picnic and planting tables for gathering spaces, and a large grocer's cart outside the fence where people can share extra produce or flowers with the community.
Second, Christensen used contacts she developed through her four-year-old grass-roots organization One Good Deed to get the Share Shed built. She tapped Hopkins Men's Shed, a group of local retirees who meet every Thursday to do community service projects.
Christensen's group of local volunteers does one good deed a month, using only donated goods or materials, to benefit the Golden Valley community. The July project was 30 Little Libraries, all built by Hopkins Men's Shed.
And while picking up the Little Library materials at the St Louis Park Home Depot, Christensen managed to walk out with an additional donation of 40 5-gallon orange buckets for the Share Shed.
“There is no better feeling than helping someone—I believe it creates ripples of kindness,” said Christensen. “It's amazing how people can pull together.”
Or maybe it's a case of reaping what you sow.
Share Shed Ribbon Cutting and Painting
Come out and grab a paint brush Sat, Aug 13, 10 am–2 pm at Medley Park and celebrate the brand new community tool shed.
Food Truck will be onsite and FREE for anyone to come and enjoy together!
For more information, visit facebook.com/onegoodeed.