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Blevins High School recognized

By Dale Gathright, Jr., 10/25/21 10:34 PM
LITTLE ROCK – The Arkansas Department of Agriculture and Farm Credit Associations of Arkansas have announced the winners of the 2021 Arkansas Grown School Garden of the Year Contest. One local school was recognized.
Best Start-up School Garden Proposal:
  • Blevins High School, Blevins (Hempstead County), $500 Award
Best Overall School Garden:
  • Cedarville Elementary School, Cedarville (Crawford County), $1,000 Award
Champion of School Garden Sustainability:
  • Forest Park Elementary School, Little Rock (Pulaski County), $1,000 Award
The Arkansas Grown School Garden of the Year Contest was initiated by the Arkansas Department of Agriculture and Farm Credit Associations of Arkansas in 2014. The program provides the opportunity to promote the importance of involving young people in the process of fresh food production and cultivation.
Farm Credit provides the funding for the program. This year funding for the contest was increased, which allowed the number of winning schools to increase from six to ten.
“As a farmer-owned cooperative, we believe it’s important to support local food system initiatives such as the Arkansas Grown School Garden Program,” said Farm Credit Midsouth CEO and Saratoga native James McJunkins on behalf of the Farm Credit Associations of Arkansas. “Local food projects like this are a great way to educate the next generation and the public about food production and agriculture.”
The contest was available to public and private K-12 schools, early childhood education facilities, and alternative learning environments. Awardees were schools that had a school garden open during the 2020-2021 school year or planned to start a garden in the 2021-2022 school year.
“School gardens provide a hands-on opportunity for children to learn about Arkansas agriculture and where their food comes from. The lessons learned through school gardens have a lasting impact on children, their families, and entire communities,” said Arkansas Secretary of Agriculture Wes Ward.