Mt. Kisco Elementary School Community Garden, Grand Opening!

Student Carolyn Wassem welcomed all who attended, with the assistance of fellow student, Emmely Corralas Arango who lead the crowd in the “Pledge of Allegiance.”

“Pledge of Allegiance” lead by Carolyn Wassem and Emmely Corrales Arango at the MKES Community Garden Grand Opening on 6/14/11 in Mt. Kisco, New York. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

The extraordinary, Sue Ostrofsky, Principal of Mount Kisco Elementary School (MKES)., told the fairy tale story leading up to “How the Garden Grew – The Story of the MKES Community Garden.”

Sue Ostrofsky, Principle of MKES., spoke on "How the Garden Grew - The Story of the MKES Community Garden." MKES Community Garden Grand Opening  on 6/14/11 Mt. Kisco, NY. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

Sue Ostrofsky, Principal of MKES., spoke on “How the Garden Grew – The Story of the MKES Community Garden.” MKES Community Garden Grand Opening  on 6/14/11 Mt. Kisco, NY. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

Ellen Rouse Conrad, Co-President of Bedford 2020, spoke about “The Seed Money – How the Dream Became Reality.” The Bedford 2020 Coalition was the catalyst for the garden idea through the Green initiatives; MKES school officials got the idea after coming to the first Bedford Environmental summit in 2009, and they continue to provide ongoing support.

Ellen Rouse Conrad, Co-President of Bedford 2020 spoke about “The Seed Money – How the Dream Became Reality.” at the MKES Community Garden Grand Opening on 6/14/11 in Mt. Kisco, New York. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

The school had a vacant, unused, fenced in tennis court on the grounds.  After much internal discussion, the team members, Susan Ostrofsky, Principal, Nanci Colangelo, Elementary Consulting Teacher., Scott Whalen, Head Custodian, along with the School Librarian, Susan Polos, and various other teachers, decided that it would be a worthwhile project for the school community to convert the eyesore tennis court into a Community Garden. This is one of those rare school projects where all the players worked together for the greater good of the community.

The Bedford Garden Club gave a generous grant of $10,000 dollars as part of  their Centennial Celebration that was instrumental in starting up the garden.  Save-a-Tree provided services by removing the trees, Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture donated soil, and Mimi Lines, noted local Landscape and Design Architect, designed the raised beds. Included in the list of participants were Bedford 2020 partners: New York Botanical Gardens, Rainbeau Ridge, Neighbors Link, Rippowam-Cisqua School, and the Bedford Central School District.

Several MKES Students., Grace Kiernan, Gianna Frusciante, and Jake Bazyk were excited to announce the businesses and organizations that received “Special Thanks.” All three students did a fantastic job as the audience erupted in applause and yelled, “Well Done!”

Grace Kiernan read “Special Thanks” at the MKES Community Garden Grand Opening  6/14/11. Mt. Kisco, NY. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

Jake Bazyk, a MKES third grader, also reads the names of those receiving ”Special Thanks” at the MKES Community Garden Grand Opening 6/14/11. Mt. Kisco, NY. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

Gianna Frusciante reads the names of those receiving ‘Special Thanks” at the MKES Community Garden Grand Opening on 6/14/11 in Mt. Kisco, NY. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

The entire student body of the Mount Kisco Elementary School (MKES) took part in singing “The Garden Song,” a version of the Hokey Pokey song and a dance classic! Each class sang their own stanza to celebrate this joyous occasion.

Student Band playing “The Garden Song,” a version of the Hokey Pokey; Montana Hooker on drums, Grayce Romeo and Maggie Kleinsmith on bass, William Rubin and Jake Witz on trombone, at the MKES Community Garden Grand Opening on June 14, 2011. Mt. Kisco NY. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/Kymry Group™ All Rights Reserved.

All MKES students singing “The Garden Song.” ., a version of the Hokey Pokey at MKES Community Garden Grand Opening on 6/14/11 Mt. Kisco, NY. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

Sue Ostrofsky, Principal of MKES, assisted students, Kerwin Rodrigues Umana, Roan Guyder, Daniel Davis, Cayla Smith, Samantha Amado, Phillip Gerbino and Olivia Marino with the Official Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at the MKES Community Garden Grand Opening June 14, 2011

Official Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at MKES Community Garden Grand Opening on 6/14/11. Sue Ostrofsky, Principal, assists students, Kerwin Rodrigues Umana, Roan Guyder, Daniel Davis, Cayla Smith, Samantha Amado, Phillip Gerbino and Olivia Marino with the Official Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at the MKES Community Garden Grand Opening on 6/14/11 in Mt. Kisco, New York. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

The garden is a good idea in and of itself, even if it only focuses on the nutrition and obesity issues. However, it goes much further and fosters an appreciation of the earth, teaches plant cultivation techniques and provides hands-on lessons in the role of sustainable food. The garden will be used to teach students about sustainable agriculture, and the art of living well and responsibly within the limits of the natural world.  Above all, this is a garden built to share with the community but also created to encourage active involvement among students, parents, and the greater Mount Kisco.

Overview of the MKES Community Garden Grand Opening celebration on 6/14/11 Mt. Kisco, New York. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup™  All Rights Reserved.

The MKES Community Garden will be tended throughout the summer by the Summer Academy and local families who have signed up  to water, weed, and harvest the crops.

A few extraordinary companies and organizations were the first to help MKES make this dream becomes a reality for the school and the community. As we see the tremendous progress made so far, it is hoped that others will want to follow in their footsteps  and provide further assistance going forward.

For further information about MKES Community Garden to make a donation or to get your hands in the dirt, please contact MKES.

MKES Community Garden Grand Opening Photo Gallery is being transferred to a new website.

All Images are Available for Licensing. To purchase prints or information about my photography, please contact Mardi Welch Dickinson at mardi@kymrygroup.com or 203-846-0359.

This intellectual property may not be reproduced, including copying, transmitting, or saving of digital files, and the alteration or manipulation of said text or image files is NOT permitted. They are not to be downloaded or reproduced in any way without the written permission from Mardi Welch Dickinson/Kymry Group™ All Rights Reserved.

By entering this site you are agreeing to be bound by these terms. To secure reproduction and use of managed rights or Articles, Please contact Mardi Welch Dickinson

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About Kymry

Welcome to the Kymry Blog. In this blog we will be showcasing photography by several different photographers with a Look in time from 1925 to the present. Share some Business & Technology of Photography. Including adventures in the birding world and many other interesting insights and observations along the way.
This entry was posted in Bedford NY, Community Garden, Conservation, Environmental, Green, KymryGroup™, Mardi Dickinson, MKES, Mt. Kisco Elementary School, Mt. Kisco NY, New York, News, Non-Profit, photojournalist, Westchester NY and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Mt. Kisco Elementary School Community Garden, Grand Opening!

  1. kiscodad says:

    Finally my kids have a good excuse for getting dirty at school!

  2. Fabulous example of what school gardens can do to develop community within schools. Your beautiful photos are enlightening and inspiring. Thank you for the insight and inspiration.

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