Swarthmore resident wins Garden Club of America award for work with Chester Eastside garden – Delco Times

CHESTER — Barbara Nagel of Swarthmore, who coordinates the St. Paul’s Community Garden for Chester Eastside, Inc., is one of 20 recipients nationwide of the Garden Club of America’s Elizabeth Abernathy Hull Award. The annual award recognizes the outstanding achievements of individuals furthering children’s early environmental education. The honor and accompanying $1,000 check were recently presented by members of The Weeders Garden Club.

“(Garden volunteer) Kate McAllister told us about Barbara while we were walking at Jenkins Arboretum,” said club member Julie DeVuono. “She talked about all the wonderful things happening in the garden and we realized she was the perfect person to nominate for the award.”

One of the enrichment clubs offered in CEI’s Out of School Time program and summer Camp Phoenix, the community garden provides children in grades K-8 with hands-on experience and outdoor instruction. The kids can learn about plant life and nutrition, including trying the fruits and vegetables produced by their labor and sharing the produce with their families and the community.

For Nagel, the community garden is a nine-month project. Through her direction, the children start seeds under grow lights in the winter, move them to the garden in the spring and with their grownup helpers, water, weed and tend to the plants until they are ready for picking or pulling. Flowers are also placed along the sidewalk to make the garden beautiful for the neighbors.

The three-season process provides an appreciation of the plant life cycle, from seed to shoot to the compost that nourishes next year’s crop. Nature offers the perfect example of working in harmony, from the worms that tunnel to give the roots more air to the pollinators that visit the flowers and make it possible for fruits and vegetables to thrive.

“Children can suffer plant blindness – not understanding how things grow or where their food comes from,” said Karen Shepard, President of The Weeders. “When they see it in the ground and try it, they realize it just doesn’t come from a package.”

The garden is designed to fill the children’s minds as well as their stomachs. When Nagel’s hands are not digging in the soil, she plans the literacy component. The older children keep written journals; non-readers draw pictures and learn new words to put with them to describe their observations. The garden library, filled with age-appropriate books, serves as a resource to learn about the way bugs, birds and plants coexist, the importance of rain barrels and how food impacts our bodies.
The community garden has been awarded annually by the Penn State Delaware County Master Gardeners, capturing first place in 2018 and 2019, and ranked fifth last year among the 2,600 community distribution sites registered with the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society Harvest Team program. The more than 700 pounds of produce raised were included in the bags provided through CEI’s Hunger Safety Net. The program offered 3,143 sacks last year, providing 1,117 families with enough food for three meals a day for six days for every person in the home.

Nagel was unaware of the nomination, which was submitted in the winter. Most appropriately, McAllister and Weeders members DeVuono, Shepard and Jennifer Fryberger visited the garden to make the presentation.
“I’m very surprised and honored to receive this reward from the Garden Club of America. I’m proud to have worked with so many talented volunteers who have helped to bring the children of Chester Eastside out into the garden,” said Nagel. “It’s fun to watch them get their hands into the soil and learn about the interconnectedness of sun, water, soil, worms and insects to grow and bring healthy fruits and vegetables home to their families.”

Mind, body, soul and shopping event comes to Autograph Brasserie

Girlfriends are invited to a “she-cation” tent at Autograph Brasserie, 503 W. Lancaster Ave., Wayne, 7-9 pm Wednesday, July 20, for an event of mind, body, soul, and shopping featuring over 30 vendors.

Women can enjoy mini-spa treatments and health and wellness products, meet local book authors to choose summer reads, and shop for the latest fashions, jewelry, and accessories, as well as great gifts and must-have items for the home. The event will also features free giveaways and sample products.

Tickets are $20 and include a glass of wine as well as a ticket for entering to win one of 32 amazing raffle prizes. Tickets are limited and can be purchased at: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/mind-body-soul-shopping-event-tickets-365674571487.

Linvilla Orchards’ Food Truck Frenzy offers international treats

Food trucks offering culinary treats from cuisines around the world will be in attendance at Linvilla Orchards’ Food Truck Frenzy, 11 am to 5 pm Saturday, June 18. The best of BBQ, Mexican, burgers, desserts, Philly favorites and more will be tantalizing attendees’ tastebuds. The event will be held rain or shine.

Guests can enjoy the musical stylings of the Bill Currier Duo while they dine and dance the afternoon away to the hopping sounds of The Ultimates. Linvilla Orchards also offers hayrides, train rides, pick-your-wwn fruit and face painting to make this a fun-filled family event.
Ship Bottom Brewery, on-site, handcrafts every batch of beer sold and wine will also be available.

Linvilla Orchards is at 137 W. Knowlton Road, Middletown. For more information, call 610-876-7116 or visit http://www.linvilla.com.

Applications now available to participate in the annual West Chester Christmas Parade

Greater West Chester Chamber of Commerce is opening applications for participants in the West Chester Christmas Parade, which will be held on Friday, Dec. 2. This marks the parade’s long-awaited return since the beginning of the pandemic.

Applicants for the parade are invited to visit http://www.GreaterWestChester.com to fill out the 2022 parade application form. Applications will be reviewed by the parade committee on a rolling basis, and the maximum number of units allowed in the parade may be reached prior to the application deadline of August 1, 2022. Local entries will be prioritized during the review process.
to support the cost of presenting the parade, non-profit entries are available to 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(6) organizations for $300. Commercial entries that are directly related to a for-profit entity are available for $1,000. Businesses and organizations may sponsor a professional performer or group for $2,500, so they can support the parade magic that helps draw visitors to West Chester’s shops, restaurants and businesses.
The West Chester Christmas Parade is a major highlight of festivities that last from Thanksgiving weekend through New Year’s weekend during Chester County Lights Up Holiday Weekends in West Chester.
Among this year’s most exciting parade participants and sponsors is Lamb McErlane PC and Treehouse World Adventure Park, who are partnering as the exclusive creator of the float that Santa Claus will arrive on.

Parade-goers can expect a focus on all things local, from floats with local flare by some of Chester County’s most creative designers, to sparkling performances by hometown favorites including nationally recognized marching bands that are exclusively local.

For more information, visit https://www.greaterwestchester.com/lights-up–christmas-parade.html or contact the Greater West Chester Chamber of Commerce at 610-696-4046, info@gwcc.org.

Readers can email community news and photos to Peg DeGrassa at pdegrassa@21st-centurymedia.com,

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