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07/26/2011

The Southside Miracle

Despite pumping over a thousand gallons of chlorine into the wrong tank at their Wise Rd. plant yesterday, BWL and local public health figures determined the area is safe.  So, bring on today's Community Garden Tour which swings through the hood starting at 5:30 pm.Tour poster

BWL, WILX, The Garden Project of the Greater Lansing Food Bank and South Lansing Community Development Association (SLCDA) are all involved in community development through helping people grow their own food, with two key examples in the area affected--or, I guess, not affected--by Tuesday's impromptu plume.

At 2:38 pm yesterday WILX reported the evacuation of the area had been cancelled and that BWL considered all chemical reactions contained to the plant.  That's good, because today at 5:30 pm you'll be joining other Lansing-area locals in an air-conditioned cruise around south Lansing, discovering the people and progress highlighted by these collaborative community garden efforts.

WILX has a special stake in "Andy's Garden," located in the affected water plant's backyard, the Consumer's Energy utility easement.  Local weather guy Andy P. broadcasts from the garden in season, and both BWL and WILX have supported local volunteers in growing food there for donation.  Westside resident LIbby Rice coordinates the garden as a volunteer, but would love to hear from anyone interested in helping to lead this dynamic food production/outdoor t.v. studio hybrid (leave a comment below).

Andy's garden is a stone's throw from the South Side Community Center (Harry Hill), putting it squarely in SLCDA's baliwick.  Led by dynamo Kathie Dunbar, SLCDA has vision and grant support for several acres of...something in the utility easement there.  With the plant slated to close for a long while, it will be interesting to see how things develop.  

Meanwhile, at the corner of Jolly Rd. and Pleasant Grove, another garden supported by SLCDA and The Garden Project is gearing up and excited to host today's tour.  Enthusiastic volunteer and "Jolly Grove" gardener Sarah Surline will give you some of the skinny in air-conditioned luxury (courtesy of Dean Transportation) as the bus approaches the garden as part of tonight's Community Garden Tour presented by The Garden Project.  If the bus ain't your style, ride your bike down to Foster Park on Lansing's Eastside at 5:30pm for an al fresco tour route including a scenic River Trail detour.

And remember, don't mix bleach with other chemicals.  Right, BWL?

 

 

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Gabriel Biber

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