May 3, 2012

KYL Hosts Capital Campaign Kick-Off Event for Local Organic Urban Farm

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As part of local non-profit Long Beach Local, this community farm is raising funds to fence-in its 1-acre lot of urban farmland in an effort to keep the critters out and the seeds sprouting for the whole city to enjoy.

LONG BEACH, Calif.—On Thursday, May 10, coordinators of Long Beach Local’s Farm Lot 59 project—a 1-acre plot of biodynamic urban farmland cultivated for community benefit—will be conducting a fundraising gala on the 14th floor of the Union Bank Building in downtown Long Beach, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Hosted by local businesses Keesal, Young & Logan and EDCO Recycling, and working in conjunction with the non-profit Long Beach Local, the evening’s fundraising efforts will include a unique opportunity to support local, chemical-free urban agriculture with a 501(c)3 charitable donation, as well as the chance to enjoy delicious refreshments and live music by the all-acoustic Americana folk band Moonsville Collective.

A volunteer-based operation located at 2714 California Ave. in Long Beach, Farm Lot 59’s goal is to nurture the direct connection between farmer and consumer. Its founders and supporters note that local farming makes it possible to provide fresh, pesticide-free produce to local consumers as well as a long list of benefits to its surrounding community.

Farm Lot 59 founder and Long Beach resident Sasha Kanno, who has an extensive background in urban agriculture, iterated that, though expensive, an effective fence is crucial to the success and longevity of the project.

“My dream fence for the farm is costly,” Kanno said. “It’s made of a composite material that looks like a split rail farm fence and it had a mesh attachment on the backside, which is really effective in keeping out the gofers, coyotes and rabbits. And believe it or not, Long Beach has lots of critters to keep out. I just threw out some wildflower seeds yesterday, and they were gone this morning. Having a good fence for the farm would work wonders.”

Humbled by the success of her efforts, Kanno said how grateful she was to be part of this project. She listed a variety of services provided by the farm to the community, including a designated children’s garden, where the kids will be able to meet chickens, explore the farming operation and identify beneficial bugs and flowers—with “everything sized to fit smaller hands and bodies.”

Farm Lot 59 serves as both an environmentally responsible practice and an educational resource for the parents, children and teachers of Long Beach to gain a more sound understanding of where healthy, fresh food comes from and how it can enrich their lives.  Nutrition education is an important component to the Farm as well, starting children off young eating their fruits and vegetables, learning how to shop on a budget and preparing meals at home.

Historically, the land where Farm Lot 59 now stands was one of 185 farm lots set in the land acquisition formerly known as Ranchos Los Cerritos, which Long Beach’s earliest developers began to divide and build upon as early as 1881. Because of its topography and role in the City’s municipal water infrastructure, Farm Lot 59’s 1-acre plot was never developed into a farm or housing tract, and remains owned by the City of Long Beach.

“If you are interested in helping us make local beautifully grown, pesticide and chemical free produce and flowers come on down!,” Kanno said.

Several work shares for the farm are still available and volunteer days are Wednesday, Friday and the second Saturday of every month, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Also, beginning this summer, Farm Stand 59 will be opening, providing farm products available for sale to the public.

For more information, call (562) 230-7207 or visit the website: longbeachlocal.org.

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About Farm Lot 59 & Long Beach Local: Farm Lot 59, working in conjunction with Long Beach Local, is a Long Beach 501(c)3 nonprofit, committed to fortifying the direct connection between farmer and consumer. They just need a little help keeping the critters out of the produce. The endeavor is literally rooted on one of 185 of Long Beach’s early agricultural farm lots and will create local green jobs, training and education opportunities to the community, not to mention prevision of healthy fresh, locally sourced food! Support Non-GMO food & flowers. Support fresh, pesticide-free produce. Support ethically & reasonably farmed products. Support Farm Lot 59.