Week 1 in Region 17

Donation Garden Visit

This week we had the opportunity to visit the Beloit Donation garden. Our team got down and dirty helping out the regular volunteers with transplants and mulching. The garden consists of a variety of fruits and vegetables each with different species. The main master gardeners, Kent and Susan, focus on optimizing yield from the garden through planting varieties. On the outskirts of the fenced garden is a fruit orchard with a variety of trees. It was amazing to see what a successful donation garden looks like. Susan and Kent clearly put a lot of effort to get food on the tables of people experiencing food insecurity. Although they are doing a great job, the garden does still have its problems. Right now, Beloit Garden relies on Bethesda Lutheran Church for their water source and their land is borrowed rather than owned. As we look into helping the Beloit Garden and potentially building another in Story County, we are taking into consideration the very real struggles faced by Susan and Kent. We hope to alleviate some of their stressors. 

Fairground Tour

Our Region 17 team took a trip to Nevada to tour the Story County fairgrounds. We were able to see the buildings where 4H shows their livestock as well as some of the playing fields. Our little road trip wouldn’t have been complete without a trip to the Historic Downtown of Nevada! Our team stopped in a few shops and explored all the various activities downtown had to offer. It was a successful trip overall. 

Farmers Market

We ended our first week at the Ames Farmers Market on Main Street. While we were there, we celebrated mental health month with a stress ball making activity for the kiddos. The stress balls were made using balloons, Iowa State colors of course, and sand. The kids loved being able to play in the sand, and luckily for us it kept their parents around long enough for us to give them some information about our 4-H clubs! The Market was very successful. By the end of the day, we had hardly anything to carry back to the office because we shared so much information. It was amazing to see how excited kids and parents were to get engaged in some summer activities!