AU Environmental Clubs come together for an evening of community building and environmental activities
Garden event reflected students' passion for the community garden
AU’s environmental clubs came together to kick off the fall season with a celebration for the community garden and the people that care about it. The garden is located beside Reeves Field, where the event took place on Friday, Sept. 30.
“A lot of people came out and came out in the rain, so that just makes me really happy and hopeful about the future of the garden,” said Kat Raiano, a junior in the School of Public Affairs and the Communications Director for the community garden.
The community garden provides companionship and education, as it meets every Saturday from 12-2 p.m. for workdays and requires no previous experience.
“I think that the garden is for everybody… I couldn't tell you half of the people here, I don’t know what their names are, but I do know that every Saturday I'll be there, we’ll have a good time, and that’s community,” said Samantha Margot, a junior in the School of Communication.
The Garden Party was a way to catch up with those who have attended workdays and to meet fresh faces who are eager to join the community. The Garden Party showcased the value of cherishing the environment through a scavenger hunt, which encouraged people to find ingredients in the garden to put towards a pasta recipe. There was also a tie-dye station with dye made from plants from the garden.
“[We] also have garden reflections … we started a big garden drawing last week where everyone took a minute and kind of drew something that is being lost or something that they really appreciate about the space,” Raiano said.
Last semester, community garden members learned that AU’s Center for Athletic Performance building is in the works to be constructed in place of the garden, forcing a relocation, which many members are unhappy about.
“I obviously am very sad that the space that we’ve really cultivated, that we love and have really centered our community around, is being bulldozed in the name of monetary interest and short term monetary gain, as opposed to long term stability, sustainability of our community and a community on campus related to environmental issues,” Raiano said.
The music that played out of a stereo, combined with the rainy weather, cast the party in a sentimental light. Students were at each and every station, hugging and reminiscing over their shared memories and fears for the future of the garden. The members who put together the party ensured it would still go on despite the weather, which created a sense of determination and passion.
“I hope that with this garden move, and this new attention that’s being placed on the garden, will actually maybe tell the administration that we are important and that there’s a large swath of campus that’s actually dedicated to the garden that wants the garden in their lives.,” Margot said.