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Fort Pierre, SD

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2019

Project Category: Community Gardens

Description: To provide residents the chance to grow fresh produce, the City of Fort Pierre began construction of its community garden in 2018. To kick off the project, organizers cleared the lot and constructed 24 raised beds, each including their own water spigot. The City also planted fruit trees at the site. As work continued in 2019, the City erected a fence around the gardens, added wood chips to create mud-free walkways between plots and installed picnic tables. That year all beds in the garden were rented. In 2020, the City added an accessible picnic table with an umbrella. Two local restaurants use the garden to raise produce for their menus and about 75 percent of gardeners renting plots are 60 or older. Project organizers report the success of the garden inspired other efforts to encourage healthy living in Fort Pierre, including improvements to the local trail system, a mural downtown and new lighting on a pedestrian bridge.

Grand Rapids, MI

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2023

Project Category: Community Gardens

Description: This project will create an accessible community greenhouse, designed by graduate architecture students in collaboration with low-income older adults, to extend the growing season at a community garden.

Richmond, VA

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2018

Project Category: Community Gardens

Description: The Greater Richmond Age Wave Coalition hoped to beautify the Green Park neighborhood and foster relationships between neighbors. To do this, the nonprofit worked to provide community gardening opportunities to residents. To allow older adults to grow produce at home, the nonprofit built 25 garden boxes. Additionally, they created an outdoor courtyard space with raised garden beds at Highland Park Apartments. The Coalition hired local youth to construct and deliver the self-water boxes. The Coalition also held two community gardening events. To help people participate, they offset a portion of public transportation fares for attendees. The Age Wave Coalition's gardening efforts operate under the talent-sharing model, which connects experienced gardeners with people interested learning more about growing fruits, vegetables, flowers and herbs.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Projects

Anderson, SC

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2023

Project Category: Walkability

Description: This project will conduct three walk audits to identify potential safe walking routes, including needed sidewalk and crosswalk improvements. It will also bring together residents, business owners and local officials to discuss the improvements.

Greenville, SC

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2018

Project Category: Park enhancements

Description: Walker Park -- a pocket park in the West Greenville neighborhood -- is a popular gathering place for residents, but the greenspace lacked accessibility features and shade. To address this, the City refurbished park benches and added an ADA-compliant shelter house with an entrance ramp. Additionally, they worked to give visitors more recreation options, replacing a dilapidated horseshoes pit and adding accessible game tables. Organizers say the additions help Greenville's older adults and intergenerational families take advantage of park amenities.

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