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Homegrown Minneapolis celebrates local food champions

The Homegrown Minneapolis Food Council hosted its annual Open House on December 1st, 2016 at Seward Montessori School. Attendees enjoyed a program featuring Council Member Abdi Warsame, presentations by Food Council Co-Chairs and members, Seward Montessori parent Hillary Oppman, and Homegrown Heroes awards presented by Council Member Cam Gordon. Prior to the program, attendees engaged with 34 local organizations at the local foods resource fair and enjoyed refreshments catered by Minneapolis Public Schools and provided by Red Table Meat.

Attendees learned about the exciting work of their peers through a presentation of the Homegrown Heroes awards and learned about local food system accomplishments.

View the Homegrown Minneapolis 2016 highlights

Homegrown Heroes

Learn more about these 2016 Homegrown Heroes below.

2016 Homegrown Heroes

As a part of our Annual Open House, the Homegrown Minneapolis Food Council recognizes and honors the accomplishments of community partners who help expand the community’s ability to grow, process, distribute, eat and compost more healthy, sustainable, locally grown foods.

The following individuals and organizations were recognized as Homegrown Heroes at our 2016 Open House:

Russ HenryRuss Henry
Giving Tree Gardens
Russ has been very involved in the local food movement in Minneapolis and has led efforts on the Food Council as member and chair, as well as outside the food council, to improve urban food growing, pollinator habitat, and a reduction in pesticide use. He helped make significant improvement in policy and regulations associated with keeping chickens in the City, composting, and land access for farming. He is also a small business operator and in his landscaping practices what he advocates. Russ embodies the vision of the food council both in his work and in his volunteer efforts. he has spearheaded successful campaigns to reduce pesticides on public and private land, and demonstrates that they are not needed in his landscaping business. As a Food Council member, he provides leadership to both keep the work tied to the mission and to include and engage all members in making it happen.

Quantina Beck-Jones
Quantina Beck-Jones is a Longfellow neighborhood resident and a backyard chicken keeping educator. Quantina has developed a training process for beginning and future chicken owners on methods for successful urban chicken-raising. Quantina is now working with Minneapolis Animal Care and Control on the creation of a new process for certifying chicken trainers. This will result better chicken training for new bird owners and create a more equitable licensing process for all backyard chicken owners in Minneapolis.

Eduardo RiveraEduardo Rivera
Sin Fronteras Farm
Eduardo Rivera is a farmer and owner of Sin Fronteras Farm. Rivera grows on three acres in Stillwater, MN and produces jalapeno and Serrano peppers, tomatillos, kale, lettuce, and a variety of root vegetables for a CSA and several whole sale clients. One of Rivera's farming goals is to make organic and chemical free food more accessible to communities like his right here in the Twin Cities. Rivera's goals include selling directly to consumers, provide food system education, and bringing wholesale prices to families in communities with food insecurity.

Minneapolis Health Department
The Minneapolis Health Department, led by Gretchen Musicant, works to uplift, empower, and grow many important sectors of the City's local food system. The health and happiness of Minneapolis residents are invigorated through the programs, initiatives, and collaborations of the Minneapolis Health Department. Here are a few of the programs that they have engaged in over the last few years:
Rethink Your Drink
Healthy Corner Stores
Farmers Market Ordinance Changes
Homegrown Minneapolis and their Food Council
Funding the first farm to school position in Minneapolis Public Schools
Initiating the Community Gardening program at MPHA high-rises
Funding the Gardening Matters Community Garden Hubs program
Initiating Market Bucks for farmers markets
Outreach to East African and Hispanic food entrepreneurs
Pollinator Patches program
And many more!

Stone's Throw Urban Farm
Stone's Throw Urban Farm grows delicious, fresh vegetables in the heart of the Twin Cities. They are working to create a dynamic urban farm that strives toward ecological sustainability, community empowerment, and financial viability. Stone's Throw Urban Farm turns vacant lots into beautiful, productive agricultural plots throughout the Twin Cities using organic practices. Stone's Throw Urban FarmSince 2011, Stone's Throw has converted 14 different spaces into mini-farms. They grow food for a multi-farm cooperative CSA program, multiple farmers markets, as well as many restaurants.

Maryan Abdinur, Anthony Emanuel, and Alisa Hoven
Land Stewardship Project; Hope Community, Inc.
Anthony, Maryan, and Alisa are involved in the community gardens and programs at Hope Community, Inc. Alisa is the manager of Hope's Healthy Food, Strong Community Program. Anthony is Hope's Youth Stewards Facilitator, and Maryan is the Community Food Systems Program ManagerAnthony Emanuel and Maryan Abdinur at the Land Stewardship Project. Each works in conjunction with the others, to bring community together around food.

 Alisa Hoven

2016 Nominees:

Elana Dahlberg Urban Strategies, Inc.
Hennepin County Master Gardeners
Susan Phillips Gardening Matters
Ramy Selim Sunny Day Earth Solutions
Gianna Short Data Harvest, University of Minnesota

View 2015 and 2014 Homegrown Heroes.

Last updated Mar 30, 2017



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