Where can children get their hands dirty and have good clean fun? At the Children’s Vegetable Gardening Program, that’s where! The Children’s Vegetable Gardening Program (Veggie Gardens) at Mill Creek MetroParks is growing gardeners and smiles all summer long! Celebrating 25 years of growing gardeners, vegetables and smiles, Veggie Gardens (as it is affectionately called) continues to be a busy summer place for planting, harvesting and gardening activities.
The first Veggie Gardens class was held at Fellows Riverside Gardens in the summer of 1992. In 1998, the program moved to the MetroParks Educational Farm in Canfield due to the construction of the D.D. & Velma Davis Education and Visitor Center. This unique gardening program, sponsored by Mill Creek MetroParks – Fellows Riverside Gardens, is a 2-year hands-on independent gardening program for children who have completed second grade and older. Each child has his/her own 3′ x 10′ garden to tend all summer long. The focus is on basic gardening skills as each child plants, waters, weeds, and harvests their own garden. Lessons are fun, engaging and informative to include hands-on activities and cooking. An important part of the program are the Green Thumbs. Green Thumbs are youth volunteers who have completed the 2 year program and return as volunteers to mentor the young Veggie Gardeners. The Green Thumbs along with dedicated adult volunteers have helped power this amazing program over the past 25 years.
Classes meet one Saturday each month from March through June from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. During summer break, classes meet every Wednesday 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. through August. The final class is a clean-up day on a Saturday in September. The fee for the class helps to cover seeds, plants, tools and activity supplies.
All Veggie Gardens’ alumni gardeners and volunteers are invited to join the celebration at the Family Harvest Picnic on Wednesday, August 16 from 6 – 9 pm at the Mill Creek MetroParks Farm in Canfield. Please RSVP to 330-740-7116 by August 3, 2017.