Community Garden

Community Garden

The community garden contributes to the community by giving the citizens of Menomonie and students of Stout the opportunity to come together and strive for a common goal, gardening. We spoke with our leader, Jessi Goodell, who also owns a plot at the garden. She says that the people are really nice to the extent where they even share their plants. For students who would just like to see the garden, it offers a variety of plants such as produce, and flowers. While in Menomonie I envision using the garden for my hobby of photography. The garden is used by many people as it offers a wide range of different flowers in one place that I would be able to photograph.

I enjoyed seeing the garden. Even though my hometown offered a community garden, it was mostly dedicated for people in town. Because I lived closer to the rural part of town, it was not directly accessible to me. At one point I was able to visit these gardens and see for myself what they offered. It had the same photographic qualities to it as the one in Menomonie.

-Brenna P.

We started off this glorious expedition by getting on the bus to explore an unknown area consisting of bees and plants.  It was the community garden.  When we got there, it wasn’t what I hoped it would be.  Instead of being a vast area of luscious green growth, it was closer to a desolate wasteland.  It was hot and dry.  The dirt itself felt scorching and sand-like.  Despite all the negativity, I saw the potential of the place.  It is a truly amazing idea.  In my hometown almost everybody has the land to start a small garden, but that is not the case in Menominee.  I took it for granted that everyone can start a garden.  I sincerely hope that the community garden gets the attention that it needs to grow and flourish.  Even though I will probably not use it, everybody else that will deserves at least the opportunity to.

-Tyler P.

We visited the Community Garden, Wilson Park, and Phelan Park. The Community Garden and the Park help to establish a sense of community though giving the people of Menomonie and Stout a place to work and play together. I could see myself using the community parks as a place to relax and using the parks as an area to attend events or play games with all of my new friends here at Stout when we want to get out of the dorms.  These areas also provide a place for me to meet and interact with the people of Menomonie in a way in which I never would be able to at a gas station or a store.  In my hometown we also have parks so it is nice to see that Menomonie is building its sense of community through them and even has a community garden to further that growth.

-Tommy P.

The day mainly consisted of observing the various floras that had been planted by the nearby population in the community garden. This also involved learning about the process of obtaining a plot on location. How this garden becomes a source of community enhancement, this appears to be most profound through the interaction of gardeners who choose to rent a plot. Such interactions may include the sharing of tips as to the most efficient gardening method, the possible sharing of weather related information, or just the simple discussion sprouted from similar interests. However I have no interest in gardening myself, I am interested in the parks of Menomonie. Particularly the park located nearest Stout, as I would enjoy watching performances shown within the stage located in the park. The park locations do remind me of the park in my hometown of Clintonville, Olen Park specifically. Olen Park in particular has always been the major source of festivities for such town. These festivities include our major Fireman’s Festival as well as the base of operations for the people that launch fireworks for our Independence Day display.

-Austin P.

The garden creates a sense of community because it serves as a gathering place for people within the community to get together and get to know each other.  It helps people come together through a common interest they all share.  In this garden the community works together to achieve a common goal.  I could see myself buying a crop here because it will bring me closer to the Menomonie community while I’m here at Stout.  This area is very different from where I grew up because this is such a smaller town where everybody knows everyone else.  In my community I can walk down the street a million times and still see people I’ve never seen before.  This was a very different experience for me, coming from a big city and now trying to adapt to a smaller one.

-Courtney P.

We visited Menomonie Community Garden, Wilson Park, and Phelan Park today. These places contribute to creating a sense of community by allowing citizens to have a common goal and a place for everyone to come together and have fun. I envision using these areas by maybe planting vegetation in the Community Garden to get my mind off of things or going to the parks with my friends to relax. These areas are similar to the town where I grow up with because we have a lot of farmlands which is similar to the garden.

-Khai (Connor) P.

For our adventure in City as Text, our group explored the Menomonie Community Garden, Wilson, and Phelan Park. Though each area was well within reach of both the Menomonie community and the campus, they all felt quiet and peaceful enough to enjoy lazy Sunday afternoons or study and learn.

As mentioned above, all these places are in fairly close proximity to the community, allowing members easy access to the benefits of each park and garden. In the Community Garden, plots are purchased by community members for the span of a year. Members begin their own garden within their designated plot, and can share their yields with others, talk about plant and garden management with those who also own plots, and enjoy the variety in the scenery brought by each individual plant and crop.

Though I do not see myself using the Community Garden for the foreseeable future, the parks are great places to hang with friends, enjoy the peace and serenity, or study for the exam tomorrow. In my hometown of Fox River Grove, IL, we have a few parks, similar to what Menomonie has to offer; we do not have a community garden, however.  My town is also much busier than Menomonie, as a major highway runs right through downtown. It is much quitter here, and I prefer it that way.

-Matthew P.

The Menomonie Community Garden contributes to the community by providing an area where people are able to work together to achieve a common goal. The garden also is a common ground in which different people can all relate to through their interest in gardening. I envision myself using this garden in my UW-Stout experience through volunteer service. I plan to partake in various volunteer organizations that I hope will include using the garden. I may even learn some gardening tips from my grandmother and buy a plot myself.  The community garden gives me a sense of home because I grew up in an area that was surrounded by farms. My family has had a garden every year. This garden proves to me that there are some rural aspects, similar to those from home, in this urban area.

-Rachel P.

Being in group nine allowed me to see a new part of Menomonie: The Community Garden.  The Community Garden was located in a small patch of land where anyone could grow whatever was possible with the soil and there was also a beekeeping stand.  The garden represents a community because it is a shared space between citizens of Menomonie that come together to achieve a common goal: to grow different food and flowers.  As a community space, it needs to be taken care of.  As an honors student at Stout, I plan on using the community garden for service opportunities.  I also plan on learning more about the citizens and different cultures that maybe present in the garden.  Unlike my own town, Wausau Wisconsin does not have a community garden (that I know of); meaning that there is not unity between different people with one goal.

-Ashley P.

Our group went to the community garden, and also Wilson and Phelan Parks. It was nice getting to see the area while at the same time getting to know some other people in honors. At the community garden I thought it was really neat to see that people are given the chance to grow food because healthy food is very important to me. I also enjoyed seeing people hanging out at the parks and being out in the community here in Menomonie.

I think the community garden brings a sense of community because it allows people to meet others who are interested in gardening. It also gives people the chance to help others out with their gardening. I think I will definitely spend some time there because I think it would be cool to meet the people with plots there. This is different from where I grew up because there is no community garden in my hometown being that I lived in a suburb of a busy city. The small town community feel is very present here and different from where I come from but it is a nice change.

-Caiti P.

The Menomonie Community Garden contributes to creating a sense of community in the Menomonie area by allowing the citizens and neighbors to share a common passion for gardening. By having a community garden, the people who owned plots had a shared goal of tending a successful garden which could start new friendships and relationships! It makes me sad that some kids vandalize the garden from time to time because that could weaken the community. I envision myself using the garden in a few different ways. I can see myself going there just to relax and admire the vegetation and plant life. The garden had a calming sense to it which could be helpful after a stressful week! I wish my hometown had a community garden. I think it is important to have a common goal/project for a town that can connect other neighbors while creating joy! My town has many gardens and parks, but none that the community can contribute to. Although everyone enjoys the beautiful places they can come and visit, it does not exemplify the feeling of teamwork and community. In conclusion, having a community garden is an awesome idea and is very instrumental in creating a sense of community.

-Katie Q.

Our trip to the community garden was fantastic. One of the great things about the garden is that it brings people from every walk of life together with a common interest of agriculture. The garden is a compilation of several small plots of land that people can rent for a year at a time. Each plot is uniquely different. Some plots are overflowing with ripe produce, while others boast a variety of colorful flowers. Some plots are a beautiful combination of both! However, the placement of the garden is unfortunate. While it is close to the city as well as the UW Stout campus, the land is very sandy and rocky and the sunlight is unrelenting. Because of this, some of the less-attended to plots are suffering. The people who own these plots may not have enough time to go the garden and tend to it frequently, so their plots are a little water-deprived and weedy.

I would like to maybe in the future help out with general maintenance at the garden, like watering and weeding certain plots if the owners would be alright with it. Something else interesting about the garden is that there are beehives there. The great number of bees help pollinate the plants and they also help create honey. It is a very interesting and beneficial system. One of our leaders, Claire Quade, was explaining to us a project her biology class worked on for the garden. Her class took soil samples from an area near the garden and came up with a system where they would plant certain vegetation that would attract helpful insects and discourage harmful ones. This may not be exactly right but I think that was the general idea of the project. Anyways, visiting the Community Garden was definitely worth it!

-Grace R.


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