Farming for the Future
Regular readers of Word on the Street will note that this isn’t the first time Partridge Creek Farm has been profiled here. And at the rate they’re going, it won’t be the last.
In just a few short years Partridge Creek Farm has gone from a modest neighborhood garden to their current project, a working farm in downtown Ishpeming.
The new two-acre facility will be adjacent to the Jasperlite Senior Housing project at the former Bell hospital site.
“Ultimately, we’ll have a complete Farm Campus, built for year-round education, with a heated greenhouse, hoop houses, raised beds, field crops, an orchard, bees, equipment barn and an outdoor classroom.” This from Dan Perkins, the driving force behind Partridge Creek Farm.
Education will play a major role in the operation of the farm. The new facility will enable the Jasperlite + Partridge Creek Farm-to-School collaboration.
According to May Tsupros, PCF Director of People and Partnerships, “This will result in year-round food education and Ag Tech programs, and we also hope to have robust intergenerational programming with the senior residents that live at Jasperlite.”
If it all sounds quite unlikely in a mining town, Tsupros has a response to that.
“Getting kids interested in farming is easy! Farming and gardening is the essence of hands-on, experiential education. Mother earth is the best teacher we have if we just provide the space for our kids to interact with the outdoors.”
The nascent local farm scene should benefit as well.
“We believe we’re helping area farmers by teaching the importance of local food to generations of residents who will be the demand for their products,” says Perkins.
As you might imagine, it’s taken a bushel basket full of collaboration to pull this together. In addition to Haan Development of the Jasperlite project, primary partners include the Ishpeming School District, MARESA, NMU and of course, individual benefactors.
Though corporate contributions are invaluable, Perkins says grass-roots support is essential too.
“We really want the community to feel like they were at the ground level of this project. Even if it’s just $5, that counts.”
Through school programs, food donations, and neighborhood gardens, Partridge Creek Farm has already carved out a positive presence in Ishpeming.
A current fundraiser is in progress through November 14th, though donations are accepted anytime.
For more info visit the Partridge Creek Farm Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/PartridgeCreekCommunityFarm
Food Service at The Courtyards
If you like the local food trucks, you’ve got to check out the one inside The Courtyards. Yes… inside.
Chef Don Durley, he of Lagniappe fame, has complemented his popular south Marquette watering hole by tapping into the food truck phenomenon.
Serving some handy Cajun favorites is the Second Line T Boys and Tapas Food Truck. It’s a stationary kitchen featuringT-Boys, Whitefish, Crispy Broken Fries and more.
With the addition of the food truck, Chef Don, or simply Chef as he is known, is proud of what they’ve done with The Courtyards, in particular, the location. Says Chef, “It’s our neighborhood where we have lived since 1990 and both of our children were born and raised.”
Son Chris manages the bar and helps in the kitchen, but gives all credit to his dad. “This is his kitchen, his recipes, and his passion that guides us.”
Food service hours are Tuesday through Thursday 11 to 7 and Friday until 8.
And there’s one more good thing about this food truck. You always know where to find it.
TV6 Canathon News
Have you been saving up your non-perishables for the annual TV6 Canathon? Well you can break out the can opener and enjoy your creamed corn because this year’s event, like so many others, is going virtual.
Scott Zerbel, Canathon producer, says the decision to go virtual was difficult, but necessary. “The Canathon relies on over 300 businesses, 75 schools and countless numbers of volunteers to be successful each year. We felt the decision had to be made in light of safety concerns over COVID 19.”
With donating canned goods virtually impossible, the Canathon is falling back on the old standby… money.
“The food pantries have increased buying power which means they get more bang for the buck, plus it allows them to purchase fresh fruits, vegetables and meat on an as-needed basis which has a huge impact,” says Zerbel.
In other words… cash is king.
Though this year’s edition won’t offer the same experience as dropping off a load of cans and watching the flurry of activity on the corresponding live Canathon show, the importance of your participation is just as great.
“We’re asking people to open their wallets this year instead of their cupboards.”
So while TV6 kicks the traditional Canathon down the road, hopefully to reappear in a familiar form in the future, the need among food pantries for monetary donations is now.
The TV6 Canathon is one of the most successful and enduring philanthropic events the Upper Peninsula has ever seen. This year, online contributions will help keep it that way.
To donate, go to the TV6 website at uppermichiganssource.com.
Redmen Playoff Football On the Air
With limited fan participation, how can a loyal MSHS football fan see this Saturday’s playoff game with Muskegon Reeths-Puffer?
Marquette Senior High School’s student-staffed REDspn.Tv will be offering live streaming of the game via their NFHS Network site.
A subscription is required to view the live stream. When you subscribe you can indicate that you support Marquette Senior High School, and they’ll receive a share of the revenue to help fund the program. To access the feed, go to www.REDspn.Tv
On the radio you’ll find the game at 103.3 WFXD and Fox Sports Marquette 105.1 & 99.9.
Kickoff is scheduled for 2pm