Archive for the ‘Lots To Gardens’ Category

Sixth Annual Alive in Lewiston

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

Friday, October 26
6:30 to 9:00 pm

A delicious home-style meal featuring local farm ingredients, live Americana music from some of Maine’s best musicians, and a space covered with wall to wall community inspired art? What’s NOT to love about this year’s sixth annual Alive in Lewiston!  A celebration of local food, music and art, Alive in Lewiston has been bringing friends, family and neighbors together each year to enjoy an artful and relaxing evening out while helping to support the community gardening, food access and cooking and nutrition projects of Lots to Gardens and the St. Mary’s Nutrition Center. This years Alive in Lewiston will also coincide with Food Day, a nationwide celebration and movement for healthy, affordable, and sustainable food. Hosted at this historic Wallace School Building (home of the Nutrition Center) at 208 Bates Street in downtown Lewiston on Friday, October 26, Alive in Lewiston begins at 6:30 pm and runs to 9:00 pm.  For those eager early birds, tickets are an affordable $15 through the week before the event and $20 at the door.  Kids under 12 are $5 in advance or the night of the event.  For more information or to RSVP please contact 207 513 3844

You Got the Beet! Walk, Run, Cycle

Friday, September 14th, 2012

You Got the Beet! Walk, Run, Cycle - September 16 through October 7 - Sponsored by St. Mary's Health System, Healthy Androscoggin, and the Lewiston-Auburn Bicycle Pedestrian Committee

 Like to walk, run, or bicycle? Then join others in the L-A community September 16 through October 7 for

“You Got the Beet! Walk, Run, Cycle.” Sponsored by St. Mary’s Health System, Healthy Androscoggin, and the Lewiston- Auburn Bicycle Pedestrian Committee, “You Got the Beet” is a non-competitive, participant driven, and family-friendly walk, run, or bicycle ride each week at the Lewiston Farmers’ Market. Perhaps you are someone who participated in Healthy Androscoggin’s’ “Get Fit and Win” and are looking for a way to continue to your healthy routine. Perhaps you are planning to participate in the upcoming Dempsey Challenge and are looking to get it in some extra practice. Whatever your reason, “You Got the Beet!” is a great way to get some exercise.

“You Got the Beet!” 

will begin and end at the Lewiston Farmers’ Market located at the municipal parking lot on the corner of Lincoln and Main Streets (Bates Mill 5 complex). Participants are encouraged to meet at the market and be ready to go by 10 am. Start times, however, can be individualized and tailored to the needs of each person. The most important part is to complete the route! Those who do, and return to the market when they are finished, will be entered into a raffle to win $125 credit with the market! Each week a participant completes the route, they earn additional raffle entries increasing their chances of winning!

For more information on “You Got the Beet! Walk, Run, Cycle” please contact us at (207) 513-3848 or visit or at

To see the suggested routes for the walk/run and ride please visit the following sites respectively

Nick News with Linda Ellerbee: “What’s for Dinner? Hungry Kids in America”

Tuesday, December 20th, 2011

At least 1 in 7 American families lack consistent access to food.  Click here to see some faces and stories of hunger in our own country and in our own neighborhood.  Meet Cameron from Lewiston, a member of Lots to Gardens, a program located at St. Mary’s Nutrition Center of Maine.

Winter Farmers Market at St. Mary’s Nutrition Center in Lewiston is Back!

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

Alive in Lewiston a Costumed Celebration of Local Food, Music, and Art this Friday at St. Mary’s Nutrition Center

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011

Friday, October 28, 6:30 pm 
St. Mary’s Nutrition Center
208 Bates Street
Lewiston, Maine

 As local gardens wind down, you’re invited to wind up and celebrate the bountiful growing season in full costume. Whether you come as a zombie, a tomato, some combination of the two, or something totally different, you’re invited to sit back, relax and take in the sounds of local musicians and the taste of a multi-course meal featuring locally grown ingredients. NOTE: there will be a costume contest so don’t forget to dress up! Audience members get to decide who the winner is – winner will take home yummy Lots to Gardens’ treats!  

Tickets for Alive in Lewiston are $15 in advance, $20 at the door, $5 for kids, and $5 for Lots to Gardens’ youth and community gardeners. If these prices don’t work for you but you really want to come, call or e-mail Lots to Gardens. We hope you’ll join us for this fun, family-friendly event. NOTE: space is limited – To be guaranteed a space please register in advance by calling (207) 513-3844. Early registration ends Thursday, October 27th at 10:00 pm.

A group of young local performers and gardeners known as De’ Hillview Groupsing will start off the night sharing “some rock and some roll”. The group has performed at Hillview’s annual Holiday show and Art Show and is known for singing African Folk tunes as well.  Members of the group have different levels of experience, but all are required to attend one singing lesson each week to participate in the group. The only qualification for being in the group is “a great beat”. 

 The Maine Squeeze According Ensemble, known for playing eclectic music from around the world, will also be sharing their tunes.  Whether they’re squeezing out jazz, blues, klezmer, zydeco, or traditional French Canadian they’re sure to make your feet move.  

Wrapping up the evening will be the Juke Joint Devils, “an old time, hard driving, hard swinging blues band that never fails to get the crowd jumping.” Hailing from Portland, the Devils’ music is rooted in the blues of Chicago, Memphis, New Orleans and West Coast Swing. The band features 2011 International Blues Challenge finalist Tom O’Connell on harp and vocals and Gerry Byrne on bass, with Stefan Iris on guitar and Pete Shorey on drums.  

Attendees will also learn about the Youth Food Bill of Rights, a declaration written by 130 youth from around the country at the annual Rooted in Community(RIC) conference in Philadelphia this past July. Four youth from Lewiston participated in the development of the original Youth Food Bill of Rights. After attending RIC they brought the idea back to Lewiston and led their co-workers at Lots to Gardens in developing their own Youth Food Bill of Rights for Lewiston. The 21-item declaration includes demands for less processed food in school lunches, an end to chemical and pesticide use on food, and more land for youth and community gardeners to grow food.

See you there!

Farmers’ Markets: Fresh Healthy Food for Everyone

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

In 2010, participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) redeemed more than $7.4 million in benefits at farmers markets. This represents more than a 70% growth in one year. Along with such growth comes local innovation designed to ensure that farmers markets are making quality food available to all members of a community.

This summer, nationwide participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is at a record high of approximately 45 million Americans. Fortunately, the families relying on this and other programs to put food on the table have a friend in farmers markets, where an increasing number of low-income consumers are purchasing locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables.

The Lewiston Farmers Market is one of a growing number of markets across the nation who accept EBT/SNAP cards and WIC coupons. In an effort to make fresh, healthy food even more accessible for all members of the community, we are continuing to offer double value coupons to SNAP and WIC customers. This program was made possible through grants and sponsors, and matches money spent at the market by customers on their EBT/SNAP card or WIC coupons dollar for dollar up to $10 a week. Customers can then use the matching “market dollars” on any healthy food at the market.

We are committed to providing the community with access to fresh, local, healthy food at affordable prices and the vendors at our markets have shown their commitment to this vision as well. Market-goers have noticed that prices at the market are often better than organic produce offered at grocery stores…and the freshness simply can’t be beat. This is true food equity.

The need for food is something that all people share. Fresh, local, healthy food nourishes our bodies, our minds, and our community.

Click here to read more blogs from Lewiston Farmers’ Market.


Hello Youth & Adult Gardeners, Volunteers, and friends of Lots to Gardens at St. Mary’s!

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

Please join us for our Community Dinner this Thursday, August 25th at the St. Mary’s Nutrition Center (208 Bates Street, Lewiston, ME) from 7:00-9:00 pm.

Our Youth Gardeners and Youth Interns are hosting an evening of dishes from the various cultures that we all come from. Look forward to a salad bar, squash bread, eggplant parmesan, sambusa, corn chowder, beet brownies, and many many more dishes.

The dinner is free – but the youth gardeners are encouraging everyone that comes to donate money. All money raised will be donated to help with famine relief in Somalia.

Lots to Gardens’ Community Dinner
Thursday, August 25th
7:00-9:00 pm
208 Bates Street, Lewiston, Maine

Please join us,
The Lots to Gardens crew!

P.S.Dinner will be served after sundown so all members of our community can participate.

St. Mary’s Farmers & Artisans Market – Wednesday, July 13

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

1:30 am – 2:00 pm (rain or shine)
Parking Lot – Corner of Lafayette Street & Campus Avenue

This Weeks Vendors

Luscious Live Lobster
Located in Harpswell, ME (visit them at
Offering fresh whole lobster, seafood and fish.

Valley View Farm
A traditional farm located in Auburn (visit them at
Offering seasonal produce, eggs, meat and Sunset Acres cheese.  If you purchased a CSA for pick-up at the market (or have a Senior share) these are the folks you need to see. 

Phoenix Farm
An Organic farm located in Monmouth offering seasonal vegetables, strawberry rhubarb pie, baked goods including fruit muffins and sweet breads or pastries.

Hummingbird Farm
Located in Turner, Hummingbird Farm is a specialty nursery who sells clematis, fancy leaved geraniums, and herb plants.  They also make handcrafted herbal soaps, lotions & body care products.

Duct Tape Wallets
Linda makes a wide variety of duct tape wallets, weighted hola hoops (great exercise) and rice therapy packs and gel neck wraps that keep you nice and cool for hours.

Fresh Start Farms
The New American Sustainable Agriculture Project is a community-based agricultural initiative that supports recent refugees, immigrants, and other new Americans as they establish agricultural businesses, offering seasonal vegetables, fruit, herbs & flowers.

A mobile arts therapy program of VSA Maine brings original works of art; pottery and cards made by youth artist, sharing their gratitude by helping to raise funds for the program through sales of their fabulous art work!  They will also be selling Wilbur’s of Maine & ArtVan chocolate bars.  Come support youth and the arts & learn about the programs. 

St. Mary’s Farmers Market – Wednesday, July 6

Tuesday, July 5th, 2011

Laura Look, ArtVan's Outreach Coordinator for the L/A communities

The growing season is well under way, each week the variety of produce ready for harvest increases, come out and see what we have this week.
ArtVan is a mobile arts therapy program. Their mission is to inspire, create and deepen relationships with the individuals and communities they service. Facilitated by an art therapist and professional art staff, the ArtVan Program takes the arts to:

· the streets
· public housing developments
· corrections facilities
· schools
· group homes
· anyone who has the least amount of social services and access to after school and summer activities

They engage these populations in the art making process so they can explore and enrich lives.

Lewiston Rain Barrel Helps Lots to Gardens at St. Mary’s

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011
City of Lewiston Press Release
June 22, 2011

L to R: Lewiston Engineering Intern Ben Sullivan, Lots to Gardens Education & Outreach Coordinator Bridgette Bartlett, and Lewiston Engineering Intern Greg LaBonte.


LEWISTON   Thanks to a joint effort between the City of Lewiston Public Works Engineering Division and the Lewiston School Department, the local Lots to Garden initiative now has an additional source of water for its garden located by the Lewiston High School (LHS) ball field dugouts in Franklin Pasture

Lots to Gardens is a youth and community driven organization, sponsored by St. Mary’s Health System, that uses sustainable urban agriculture to create access to fresh food and to nurture both healthy youth and a healthy community.  Individuals are taught how to grow their own food, access affordable fresh food, and youth are involved as leaders. Lots to Gardens also helps families and youth develop skills towards lifelong and community-wide change.  Since 1999, Lots to Gardens has built 15 gardens and green spaces in 4 diverse Lewiston neighborhoods.

To provide participating gardeners with additional water, Engineering Division summer interns, Ben Sullivan and Greg LaBonte, installed gutters and downspouts on the LHS dugout and located a rain barrel under the downspout.  The rain water runoff from the dugout roof fills the barrel providing water for the gardeners. The dugout roof, measuring 36’ by 11,’ provides 250 gallons of runoff in a one-inch rain storm.

Bridgette Bartlett, Education & Outreach Coordinator for Lots to Gardens, states, “The community gardeners will really benefit from all the extra drops of water this rain barrel can collect. St. Mary’s Lots to Gardens is excited about the educational aspect as well as the overall benefits to the community when the City and other agencies can work together to help make a project happen.” 

As a money saver, residents are also encouraged to install a rain barrel at their respective homes to collect water for lawns and gardens. In addition, by utilizing such runoff at homes, local rivers, streams, and lakes will be kept cleaner, as stormwater runoff is the biggest threat to water quality. By collecting the water prior to it becoming street/road runoff sweeping up pollutants and discharging them into water without any treatment, the concern is considerably lessened for that area.

Jan Patterson, Lewiston Project Engineer, further praised the rain barrel at the dugouts, stating, “This project will be a living stormwater education project.”