A few weeks ago my dad and I were going to mulch a bed he created in the middle of the front yard…but we decided against it because it was too hot. We have to be a bit careful in the heat these days after his health scare earlier this summer. I thought that a brief visit to visit Frank Asher at Old City Farm and Guild’s Home Grown DC Event was the wiser thing to do. In my world, when in doubt, find a festival or a party…because life is short….and there should always be time for FUN!!! Off we went to see what fun could we could fall into, on such a warm Saturday afternoon.
Well we were not disappointed. The crowd was manageable and the festive spirit was in the air in the Shaw neighborhood of Washington DC. My Dad reminisced about how he delivered papers in this area as a child and how much the area had changed. With development encroaching upon this historic neighborhood, the grounds of the Shaw Junior High School, 925 Rhode Island Avenue was looking more like an outdoor party than a small local garden center. There were people who resided in DC, had grown produce from their own gardens, school groups/gardens and even a flower grower who had items for purchase. If you chose to be a participant, there were several categories that our own Kathy Jentz, Washington Gardener Magazine, shared with the audience for judging. From the longest bean to the strangest looking vegetable, Kathy invited audience participation by clapping to see who would win. I still think that one of those vegetables looked a little….well…you just had to be there. It looked like so much fun, just think to have an audience of strangers (but food aficionado’s) judging your homegrown vegetable – AWESOMNESS!!! I wonder who won best pie????? The garden community is such an awesome place to participate and belong.
I am quite passionate about supporting local business people. When I first visited Frank at Old City Farm and Guild, I noticed the pottery, healthy plant material, mulch, bee hives and propane….all in one place. It was also rather neat that customers can participate in a CSA and pick up their produce delivered weekly to Old City Farm and Guild. What an astute businessman or Pied Piper of Green to think of the necessities one might need in the center of the Shaw area from a grass roots perspective. The staff at Old City Farm and Guild all were quite eager to assist customers – even on this busy day of festivity..a smile …a Thank You for coming out….how awesome was that??? Frank Asher, I hope you are a permanent fixture in the Shaw neighborhood or at least in the DC area. You are a needed component to a changing community….
Thinking I had tuckered my Dad out, I was planning on taking him back home. He had other ideas. Earlier this summer we were in one of the big box stores – looking at plants – when we over heard this lady sharing that there was this nursery off of Briggs Chaney Road and Old Gunpowder Road. that has excellent merchandise. Road warrior that I am, I was ready to put Dad in the truck and rush over to see what the offerings were. That young man trains quickly and well…he was headed to the truck before I was!