As the warm weather fades into autumn, we take a breath and reflect on just how much has happened at the Huss Project this summer. This season has been full to the brim with cultivating our urban farm, hosting summer lunches for our neighborhood, facilitating service-learning for Camp Tavor, and putting on our 9th annual Future Festival!
Every week this summer, we’ve harvested baskets and buckets full of delicious fruits and veggies to share the bounty of the soil with our community. We’ve continued in our third year of partnership with United Community Assistance Program (UCAP), the Community Kitchen at Trinity Episcopal, and the Domestic and Sexual Assault Shelter to distribute produce to those in our community in need of better access to fresh food. Countless pints of cherry tomatoes, hundreds of squash, dozens and dozens of ears of corn, and loads of more produce have gone out into our community to fill kitchens with delicious, healthy food. It was our sixth year at the Three Rivers Farmers Market selling produce from our farm alongside produce from partner farms—Corey Lake Orchards and Bair Lane Farm—and those proceeds go right back into the soil helping to grow the fruits and veggies for next year.
Five days a week all summer we shared lunch with the kids in our neighborhood as part of the Meet Up and Eat Up summer lunch program which provides free meals for school age kids throughout the summer in partnership with Three Rivers Schools. Friendships were forged and community conversations were fostered as we shared lots of pizza, PB&J, and goldfish crackers. A huge shout out to Pam King, who works for the school system and helped distribute over 1,600 lunches, coming out every day throughout the summer without fail. And a big thank you to all our volunteers from local churches, schools, and community organizations who helped us host lunches with care. We so appreciate your investment in all the kids you shared food and laughter with this summer!
This summer we partnered extensively with Camp Tavor, a local Jewish camp, by working alongside their counselors-in-training every week and as one of their service-learning sites where they practiced the virtue of Tikkun Olam with campers—repairing the world through social justice and service to one’s community. We discussed the different needs of Three Rivers and how their work at Huss contributes to the city’s flourishing—from weeding vegetable beds to helping prep for Future Festival. Our community and the Tavor community were both enriched by the cross-pollination of thoughtful conversations over the summer while sharing space and work together.
Every year Future Festival just keeps getting better and better, and the 9th annual celebration was no exception. No rain forecast could get in the way of our festivities with over 1,000 friends and neighbors filling the halls of Huss, shopping the rummage sale, connecting with local organizations at the Community Carnival, getting creative with arts and crafts projects, enjoying the musicians jamming away, and dancing their hearts out at the end of the day! In the midst of all the boisterous celebrating, we also opened the Quiet Park where many little feet came to explore the grassy paths and take in the gentle silence of nature. As with all we do at Huss, the help of willing hands and hours of volunteering is what made this Future Fest a smashing success raising over $8,000 dollars helping to fund our work for the flourishing of our community and the places where we put down roots. We want to say thank you again to all of you who came out to celebrate with your generosity, playful energy, and joyful spirits. It’s been a fantastic summer y’all, and we can’t wait to do it all over again next year!