Blog Archive

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

10 Cents Grantees! And...Quick Survey Request

Greetings all,

The Michigan Department of Education has exciting news – a list of 57 new grantees for 10 Cents a Meal for School Kids & Farms.

And we at Groundwork Center for Resilient Communities have a request for feedback. Please see below!

2018-2019 10 Cents Grantees

Click here to visit's About Page and find the full listing of Michigan school districts receiving 10 Cents a Meal funding for the 2018-19 school year. And watch for a press release soon.

10 Cents is a state pilot program that provides schools with up to 10 cents per meal in match funding to purchase and serve Michigan-grown fruits, vegetables, and legumes.

Help Us Help You!      

14 Quick Questions about 10 Cents a Meal, $50 for You!

$50 could soon be yours! By completing this short, 14 question survey—by no later than October 7— you will help Groundwork Center for Resilient Communities, communications partner for 10 Cents a Meal, evaluate communications efforts so far. And you'll be entered to win $50. We would love to hear what you think we are doing well and, just as importantly, how you think we can improve.

Let your voice be heard—click this link now. You'll be happy you did.



*Please note my email address has changed to

Diane Conners  |  Senior Policy Specialist
Groundwork Center for Resilient Communities

P   231-499-3937

T   @grndwk

A  148 E Front St, Suite 301  |  Traverse City, MI 49684 

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

FW: Register for the 2018 Michigan Good Food Summit!


We hope to see you at the Michigan Good Food Summit next month, where youth leadership, school culture, farm to school, the 10 Cents Pilot, and Michigan's No Kid Hungry work are all on this year's equity-focused agenda.




Colleen Matts

Farm to Institution Specialist | Core Partner, National Farm to School Network

Center for Regional Food Systems | Michigan State University

480 Wilson Rd | Rm 302B Natural Resources Building | East Lansing, MI 48824

(p) 517.432.0310 |



From: "Kelly, Rachel" <kellyra2@MSU.EDU>
Reply-To: "Kelly, Rachel" <>
Date: Wednesday, September 19, 2018 at 11:19 AM





This October, the Michigan Good Food Summit will amplify under-represented voices across the food system as we continue advancing the Good Food Charter's vision of equity, sustainability and a thriving economy for all of Michigan and its people. Whether you're a food consumer, grower or buyer; line cook, server or chef; advocate, educator or policymaker - join us in East Lansing to connect with others advancing good food and equity in Michigan! 




For questions on registration and sponsor/exhibitor information, contact Diane Drago at or (734) 747-2746.


If you would like to reserve a room at the Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center in East Lansing the night before the summit, please make your reservation by Monday, September 24th. The conference rate is $111, plus tax. To make your reservation, please call 800-875-5090 and refer to Group Code: 1211GOODFO or the Good Food Summit room block.



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Friday, September 14, 2018

September 2018 Michigan School Garden Newsletter


September 2018

Welcome to our Back to School edition – hope you are all doing well in the hustle and bustle of the new school year!


Back to school recipes from the garden

by Kaitlin Wojciak


Jump into the school year using the garden with these delicious recipes ideas


Another summer vacation has flown by; students, parents and teachers are feeling a mixture of wonderment about where those months went and excitement for a fresh year. On the bright side of returning to school, the first few months of the school year are prime for school garden growing, education, harvesting and tasting. While school gardens use different management styles in terms of growing only during the school year or finding a system to grow during summer months, many school garden practitioners share the goal of using produce from the garden.


There is a lot to balance upon the return to school, such that integrating the garden can seem like a big undertaking. If your classroom does not typically use the garden in the beginning of the year, consider working towards using garden produce for just one recipe for students to sample. This is a reasonable goal for beginner and experienced school gardeners alike, and gives everyone some time to get reacclimated to garden rules and guidelines, while getting excited about the range of possibilities of food that can be grown in a school garden.


If your garden was tended during the summer, there is likely an abundance of produce well on its way to being ready to harvest, or perhaps already mature and waiting to be used. If your garden is only in operation during the school year, September is a critical time to plant some short season crops like radishes, salad greens or perhaps peas. In either case, you can still make use of the garden by setting expectations, involving students in planting and harvesting, and best of all, eating the fruits of your labor!


Here are a few simple recipe ideas to use summer and fall crops that are often found in school gardens.


Garden Salsa: A tried and true favorite for all! In the dark months of winter, you may dream about the wonderful taste of a fresh tomato. Now is the time to experience the flavors that are unique to a home-grown garden tomato! Everyone has a slightly different preference for what to include in their salsa, but this is a simple, kid-friendly recipe. The jalapenos and cilantro can be omitted or modified depending on preference.


Personal Garden Pizzas: Harness your students' creativity by offering an opportunity to construct and decorate their own personal pizza. Offering a range of vegetable toppings for the pizzas can result in scrumptious works of art. To keep it simple, try using either English muffins or pitas as the crust for these individual pizzas. Remember that you can add garden grown tomatoes on top to replace pizza sauce.


Caprese Salad: A favorite recipe to use garden fresh tomatoes, caprese salads are simple to put together and delicious. Most recipes call for large tomatoes, but halved cherry and grape tomatoes work well too, and are often more popular with students. Also try mixing different varieties of tomatoes to expand taste buds even further. Here's one recipe to get you started.


Vegetable dips: Dips seem to increase students' willingness to try and consume more raw vegetables. The beauty of making and offering a variety of dips is that you can use whatever vegetables you have ready for harvest from the garden for dipping, including carrots, sweet peppers, radishes, peas, cherry tomatoes, turnips and even greens. Hummus is an increasingly familiar dip option, but there are hundreds of other dips to try! This link offers a number of simple, healthy, and kid-friendly dip recipes to try.


This article was published by Michigan State University Extension and the staff in the Community Food Systems Workgroup who support Farm to School activities including school gardens.  For more information, visit To have a digest of information delivered straight to your email inbox, see To contact an expert in your area, visit, or call 888-MSUE4MI (888-678-3464).



Seed Saving Connected to Academic Content and World Issues

by Kristine Hahn


Seed saving is a fun garden activity that can easily connect to larger academic content and current events.

Saving seeds is a great activity to do in the fall school garden and has a huge potential to connect to a wide variety of academic content in your classroom.


First and foremost, collecting seeds introduces students to the life cycle of plants for all ages.  For the younger students there are counting and sorting exercises, and for the upper elementary students, seed saving can be connected to plant science reproduction, basic genetics and biodiversity. has a fun Save Your Seeds Garden Activity that is good for students of all ages.  It also contains a Seed Saving chart listing which crops are easy to save seeds from and how to process them.  This handy chart has a simple explanation of hybrid and open pollinated varieties.  Hybrids and open pollination are important concepts linked directly to genetics.  A good explanation of hybrid vs. open pollinated vs. heirloom plants can also be found in an article at this link by the Center for Urban Agriculture.


More advanced concepts such as seed banks, seed libraries and agrobiodiversity can be covered directly in relation to seed saving activities.  These concepts help link not just the "how" of seed saving, but the "why" it is important to save seeds.  According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) program of the United Nations, agrobiodiversity is disappearing and the scale of the loss is extensive.  An example of this loss is that today 75 percent of the world's food is generated from only 12 plants and five animal species.


This plant genetic diversity has been lost as farmers and gardeners worldwide have left their multiple local varieties for genetically uniform, high-yielding varieties.  This dependence on a few varieties puts the food system at risk.  Genetic diversity is a cornerstone to pest and disease resistance. 

A fairly recent example of the risk of dependence on one food crop is the Irish Potato Famine of the 1840's when a fungal disease wiped out the potato crop in Ireland for many years leading to mass starvation, and, ultimately mass emigration.  A similar situation is currently brewing with the Cavendish banana monoculture grown worldwide that is threatened with a fungal disease. These examples connect to both genetics and history.


Genetic variety is also key to adapting to changing environmental conditions such as climate change. 


So while seed saving may seem to be a simple classroom exercise, it clearly is connected to much larger academic subjects and current world issues that our students need context about.


This article was published by Michigan State University Extension and the staff in the Community Food Systems Workgroup who support Farm to School activities including school gardens.  For more information, visit To have a digest of information delivered straight to your email inbox, see To contact an expert in your area, visit, or call 888-MSUE4MI (888-678-3464).



School Garden Grant Information

  • Annie's Grant for Edible School Gardens ­– Deadline to apply is November 1st
    • Public, public charter, private schools and charters with 501 (c)3 status and organizations supporting school gardens with 501 (c)3 status are eligible to apply.
    • Award amount: $3,000 for new grant recipients and $5,000 for previous grantees
    • Follow this link to learn more and apply
  • American Honda Foundation - Due dates three times per year
    • Schools, nonprofits classified as 501(c) (3) s and private or public schools (elementary and secondary) are eligible.
    • Award range: $20,000 - $75,000 for one year
  • Captain Planet Foundation
    • Schools, nonprofits and other organizations classified as 501(c) (3) are eligible
    • Projects must: be project-based; performed by youth; have real environmental outcomes; be based in the United States.
    • Award range is between $500 - $2500. At least 50% matching or in-kind funding for projects is preferred.
  • Cartons 2 Gardens ContestRegistration open, final submissions due March 29th, 2019
    • K-12 public and private schools are eligible to participate
    • Participants start by collecting at least 100 empty cartons from home, community or cafeteria. Projects will construct purposeful garden items and structures using the cartons.
    • 15 projects will receive award packages for their entries, including one grand prize valued at $5,000
    • Register and learn more at this link
  • Greenworks Grants – Deadline to apply is September 30th
    • School and youth organizations are eligible to apply
    • Projects must incorporate service learning, exemplify student voice, involve at least one community partner, secure at least 50% matched funds (in-kind is acceptable), and be completed in one year
    • Awards are $1,000
    • Follow this link to learn more and apply
  • The Home Depot FoundationCommunity Impact Grants currently open
    • Schools and 501(c) (3) organizations are eligible.
    • Awards are up to $5,000
    • The Home Depot also has opportunities to match donations from local stores with nonprofits. Follow this link for more information on how to request a match. 
  • Jump Start Healthy Changes GrantFall 2018 deadline to apply is November 7th
    • K-12 Schools enrolled in Fuel Up To Play 60 and participate in the National School Lunch Program are eligible
    • Awards are up to $4,000
    • Funds are awarded for schools to implement at least one Healthy Eating Play
      and one Physical Activity Play from the Fuel Up to Play 60 Playbook.
    • Visit this link to learn more and apply
  • Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation
    • Public schools are eligible
    • Awards from $5,000 - $25,000
    • Visit this link to answer preliminary questions and learn more.
  • Salad Bars to School Grant
    • Any district or independent school participating in the National School Lunch Program is eligible to apply. To qualify for a Let's Move Salad Bars to Schools grant, applicants must offer the salad bar as part of the reimbursable meal served in your district.
    • Schools use the award (approximately $3,147 value) to implement salad bars as part of their daily meal program
    • For more information and to apply, follow this link.
  • Whole Kids Foundation School Garden Grant programApplications open on September 1st and are due on October 15th at 6pm EST
    • K – 12 schools, 501(c)3 non-profit working in partnership with a K-12 school and 501(c)3 non-profit organizations are eligible to apply
    • Informational webinars are being offered on September 6th at 1pm EST and October 4th at 4pm EST
    • Follow this link to learn more and apply
  • Youth Micro-grants through Karma for Cara FoundationRolling deadline
    • Youth under age 18 who are working on a community service project (including school and community gardens).
    • Awards are between $250 - $1,000.




School Garden Educational Opportunities

Garden Health Field Day -

Friday, September 21 | 9:15am - 4:30pm

The Garden Project and MSU Extension will host a GARDEN HEALTH FIELD DAY for community and urban gardeners at two of mid-Michigan's finest community gardens.The morning session will be held at Hill Community Garden, located at 5815 Wise Road, Lansing, Michigan, 48911. The afternoon session will be held down the road at Webster Farm, a 3-acre community garden. Throughout the day, growers will have the opportunity to participate in hands-on demonstrations as they learn about soil health, pest control, cover cropping, composting, soil test kits and more. Every type of grower is welcome, from community and urban gardeners, to homesteaders, farmers and newbies.  Registration is $20 and will include lunch from Teff-Riffic Ethiopian and plenty of goodies to take home.  If cost is barrier, let us know.  We have scholarships! For more information and to register, click here.

  • Garden Project Perennial Plant Exchange

Saturday, September 22 | 1:00 pm

Resource Center

  1. Marcus St, Lansing 48912

Come with a few items you need to divide, leave with a few new favorites! This annual tradition kicks off at 1:00 sharp. Arrive promptly to be able to participate.  Please come even if you do not have plants to exchange.  We will be bringing a lot of extra!


Evenings in the Garden is a series of classes for beginner and experienced gardeners, homeowners, landscapers, and outdoor enthusiasts - taught by favorite regional experts - held at the beautiful, historic MSU Tollgate Farm.


28115 Meadowbrook Rd, Novi, MI 48377

Advance registration required

$20. each session

Light snacks and beverages provided


Contact: S. K. Rosina Newton

248-347-0269 ext. 229

Evenings in the Garden Fall Season 2018


 September 27Malik Yakini - What's Race Got to Do With Food?

October 25Steven NikkilaPhoto Tour of World Gardens

November 8Lisa Steinkopf - Cultivating Your Green Thumb – Indoors!


MSU ExtensionTollgate Farm and Education Center


Saturday, October 6: 11:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m.

Sunday, October 7: 11:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m.

Come, take a wagon ride to the pumpkin patch to pick your perfect pumpkin. Food, music, farm animals, educational exhibits, and children's activities all make for a fun fall outing for all ages.  

Check out the music line-up of FREE concerts! Farmington Hills and Novi Public Libraries will be sharing story hours, face painting, and a scavenger hunt. In addition to a children's straw maze and pumpkin bowling, inflatable and target practice booths are fun destinations around the farm. The MSU Bug House and the Ann Arbor Hands-on Museum will lead hands-on activities each day. Nijii Ami, local living history group, returns to the farm with a historic reenactment of earlier Michigan residents cooking fall harvest foods.

This special event is a fundraiser for educational programming at the farm. Entry, educational exhibits, children's strawland and music are free of charge. Tickets sold for cash or credit are required for pumpkins, food, and select children's activities. There is a charge for parking.

Please bring your friends and family and join us for a fun, fall destination at Pumpkinfest 2018!



  • MOFFA (Michigan Organic Food and Farm Alliance) Educational Opportunities
    •  LOTS of organic farming workshops and conferences in Michigan





Kristine Hahn

Michigan State University Extension Educator

Community Food Systems

Oakland County Office

1200 Telegraph Rd. #26E

Pontiac, MI 48341


*Please note my new office location

MSU is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer.  Michigan State University programs and materials are open to all without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, gender identity, religion, age, height, weight, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, marital status, family status or veteran status.

"Always be humble and kind." - Tim McGraw