Carol Ford is good at imagining a brighter future. Even more importantly, Ford is good at taking steps to make that vision a reality. Whether writing a “hero’s tale” modern novel, creating a winter Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) project, or building one of the first Deep Winter Greenhouses (DWG), Ford is an innovator.
Across the state of Minnesota, University of Minnesota students serve communities and make connections between hands-on community-based projects and their own academic pursuits. As part of the University of Minnesota Extension Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships’ (RSDP) mission to connect community needs with University resources, students’ energy, passion, and burgeoning skill sets provide fuel for many RSDP projects.
How do I store fresh asparagus? Why has my avocado shipment gone gray? When are my watermelon beyond saleable? These are questions that owners of small, rural grocery stores may ask when facing the challenges of increased customer demands for a wide variety of fresh, local produce.
Today, Sean Yang is a board member for the University of Minnesota Extension Southwest Regional Sustainable Development Partnership (RSDP), a council member for the City of Walnut Grove, an active volunteer with the Economic Development Administration, a volunteer for the elderly, and a loving husband and father. However, he didn’t start that way.
Politician. That word has a lot of connotations. However, politician stems from the root world polis, or city, making politicians “people of the city.” Meeting Hank Ludtke—nine-year mayor of Frazee, Central Regional Sustainable Development Partnership (Central RSDP) board member, volunteer with over half a dozen organizations, neighbor, friend and father—I was reminded of that original meaning.
So, what are you hoping you’ll see in the future with Deep Winter Greenhouses (DWGs)? “A good place for the whole garden operation.” “I think it’d be neat to see this implemented both on the home scale and on the more production scale.” “More research and development!” “I’m really hoping to see more of these greenhouses being used at schools.”