Tag Archives: D.C.

Five percent for empowerment: Supporting a community kitchen

Zucchini by Rhea

Zucchini by Rhea

Today, 5 percent of all grocery bills at Whole Foods in Silver Spring will go toward empowerment. That is because those dimes and dollars will support the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Shared Use Community Kitchen.

Not all 85 subscribers to this blog live in the D.C./Maryland area, so I won’t go into detail about the 5 percent day (though if you are in the area, you should go!) Instead, I’ll tell you about this kitchen. According to the project site:

For the past three years, a group of dedicated individuals have been working hard to renovate and reopen the commercial kitchen located in the Takoma Park Presbyterian Church.

Once completed, the kitchen will be available as:
1. an incubator for entrepreneurs to start small food-based businesses,
2. a classroom for teens, seniors, and anyone to learn about healthy eating, and
3. a production space where donated food can be prepared to be sent to local food banks and homeless shelters.

I’m proud to be a part of this kitchen as a board member of the Crossroads Community Food Network, one of the partners in launching the new space. Crossroads is all about food access and empowerment  — empowerment to eat healthier food (through the Crossroads Farmers Market and Healthy Eating Program), to earn a living wage from preparing food (the Community Kitchen and Microenterprise Program), and to embrace the cultural foods of your own community and others’ (all of the above).

I look forward to the funds and attention this day can bring, and appreciate the community contributions and support we receive. By reading this post, you’re already part of the empowerment. So thank you!

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Analyze that Dirt

bags of soil

Soil samples from my plot and my garden neighbors’ are mixed, dried, and ready to ship to U Mass.

Colleges just had that special break where students drink on the beach and faculty stay home to watch 90s movies, and I have potatoes sprouting on my kitchen table. So even if forecasters predict snow tomorrow, spring is officially here! For gardeners, that means it’s time to send in soil samples for testing, if you haven’t already.

Wondering what the deal is with soil testing? Here’s my basic guide to getting your dirt analyzed:

  • It’s a good idea to test levels of various materials in your garden soil every year or two. It’s like getting a physical and doing blood work. Then you can add whatever nutrients you need to grow the most abundant and nutritious plants or, in some cases, remediate or move on to avoid harmful contaminants like lead. Find out more on this and the movement for better soil from the Bionutrient Food Association.
  • A good time to do this in the D.C. area is usually late February. But if the ground is frozen solid during that time like it was this year, late March works.

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Image for the Day: Guerilla chess

“We’re out here pretty much every day, weather permitting,” he tells me.

So why not invest in some chairs? Or, you know, a table? I am clearly an outsider.

14th and V Streets NW in Washington, D.C., any afternoon. Photo by Rhea.

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You’ve read the essay, now see the videos!

As some writing colleagues know, I wrote an essay about my father’s involvement with TV pirates. I’m helping to organize a screening of some of the video that he and his mates, the Videofreex, produced. The D.C. Arts Collective in Adams Morgan will host the event on January 19. Read the announcement and RSVP on Facebook (essay has yet to find a home, but rest assured that when it does, you can read about it here):

Step into the social, cultural, and political tumult of the 1960s and ‘70s through the videos of the pirate TV force called the Videofreex. This screening will include interviews with cultural icons, experiments in early special effects, and bits of a pirate TV show broadcast from tiny Lanesville, NY.

Videofreex Skip Blumberg and Rhea Kennedy, along with fellow traveler Eddie Becker, will share background in person.

Wednesday, January 19

7:00 p.m.

DC Arts Center
2438 18th Street NW
Washington, DC

Total video running time: about 40 minutes
Cost: $5

Contact: Skip Blumberg IMPIncNYC@verizon.net

RSVP on Facebook

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