It was April 14th, 2011, and for us this sight was a sheer delight--30 kindergarten boys and girls from Boyd Elementary School in Springfield, Missouri, working like crazy to create a garden.
|Hard at it|
We'd never seen kids work so hard or so fast, and we're not kidding. They were doing it all themselves, too.
|Okay, It's Full!|
"It's full. Let's go!" one called, and they set to work wheeling the dirt over to the raised beds.
The planting people, and plenty of 'em.
|Doin' It Right|
Hey, what gives? We couldn't do any better. And he's, well, you know, not big like us.
Kids and plants both like water.
More water for those pretty vegetables.
Good till the last drop.
|All Planted Up|
Three beds planted, watered, and good for the growing.
The day was all about the Midtown School Garden and the Missouri Agriculture Department's 10,000 Gardens Challenge, a program to "encourage Missourians to get their hands dirty" by making gardens. Jon Hagler, the agency's director, was present, and likable to the max. He said one of the kids told him, "If you're good at growing things, can you grow us some ice cream sandwiches?"
Hagler gave a moving, funny, inspiring talk about how we're not far removed from our farm roots and how if we get back to the soil it just might make for a better world. We thought he was dead on, and after his remarks he met, made time for, and chatted amiably with just about everybody.
The Department of Agriculture had a booth for passing out info and meeting folks. We met several of their people and were very impressed with their sincerity, good humor, and obvious desire to, well, do real good in this world.
|The Garden Story|
Exactly how the Midtown School Garden works. Check the mission statement at bottom of the sign. They're not kidding. This day and this event were so good and so filled with heart that we left feeling that, what do you know, we have a future after all, we Americans.