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Generally known as a food desert – an area where fresh fruit and vegetables are scarce, yet fast food restaurants and liquor stores are plentiful – the Park DuValle neighborhood is welcoming the new addition with open arms.
According to WFPL, Disctrict 3 Councilwoman Mary Woolridge used some of her discretionary funds to repair sidewalks around the store, saying that equal access to fresh food was a top priority for her.
However, it got me to thinking about the next step. If a community can get behind the development of a local grocery store then maybe – with enough time and support – urban agriculture can close the gap and help make food deserts a thing of the past.
For many living in Louisville, urban gardening can be difficult. Most of us live in apartments or houses with small strips of green space.
I personally live above a storefront in Germantown. No backyard. No access to my rooftop. No real way to create a decent garden. But, in spite of this deficiency, I have improvised. This typically involves milk crates, ceramic pots and a wooden shelf facing the windows.
Growing your own groceries is possible, but it definitely takes time and commitment. Just like how the citizens of Park DuValle petitioned their leaders to create a place where fresh food can be made available, all good things require diligence.
Perhaps in the near future I’ll give a detailed explanation of how urban gardens can function with limited amounts of green space. But for now, I leave you with this infographic:
Courtesy of Slow Food USA
The Food and Farm Bill is the single most important influence on what we eat and produce in the United States. Whether on the grocery shelf or in the planting row, the Bill touches the lives of every single person in this country. It provides support for families battling hunger, helps communities operate farmers’ markets, and unfortunately, subsidizes the production of food that is making us and our planet sick.
Support our fight against hunger by maintaining and strengthening critical nutrition programs in this time of unprecedented need. We must not solve our budget problems on the backs of those experiencing food insecurity, including our most vulnerable – our children, the elderly, and the disabled;
Provide an even “plowing” field by fully funding programs that support beginning and socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers, organic farming, regional farm and food economies, and rural development. We need more farmers and ranchers, more sustainable food production, and more economic opportunity in our food system;
Support family farmers that really need help, not the biggest farms that don’t: End subsidies (aka direct payments and counter-cyclical commodity programs), and replace them with loophole-free agriculture risk coverage. Additionally, implement a cap on crop insurance premium subsidies;
Ensure that limited conservation funding maximizes lasting environmental benefits: Limit funds to Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) for animal waste management infrastructure by eliminating the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) Livestock Set-aside and protect the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) from disproportionate cuts, and improve it by ranking applications solely on their conservation benefits.
Part two of the suggested reading series: a list of blogs and online publications, and the reasons why they should forever be bookmarked on your web browser…
What is it? Longtime writer Kenny Bloggins came to prominence in Louisville with his music blog The Decibel Tolls, which ran for four years – a century in internet time. When the decibel finally stopped tolling, he decided to launch Distonal, a blog dedicated to anything and everything that strikes his fancy.
Why should I read it? Remember the time U of L and UK were slated to face off in the Final Four? Remember when Zanzabar decided to only allow Louisville fans in during the game, in order to prevent bar fights? Remember how UK fans reacted? Yep. Distonal is the blog that exposed the much-hyped-but-not-seen “Occupy Zanzabar” movement, where hundreds of UK fans collaborated on Facebook to wear their best “U of L fan disguise” and infiltrate the bar. (Spoiler: it never happened) Aside from covering these types of local shenanigans, Distonal provides info on Louisville’s night life, arts and music scene and political climate, using enough sharp wit and dry humor to keep readers coming back for more.
The ‘Ville Voice/ Page One
What is it? “A critical take on Louisville news” sums it up pretty well. Using The ‘Ville Voice – and it’s sister site Page One – author Jacob Payne seems to have dedicated his writing career to exposing the dirty underbelly of Louisville’s corporate and political world.
Why should I read it? If you live in Louisville – or anywhere in Kentucky – and actually care about what your elected officials are doing with your tax dollars, then you need to follow this blog. Seriously. Do it now. Payne holds nothing back in his articles and seems to never take sides. Democrats, republicans, capitalists or communists: no person is safe under the authoritative voice of the ‘ville.
What is it? Founded in 2006, Broken Sidewalk uses reader feedback and community input to documentLouisville’s transportation and neighborhood-related news. Much of the blog consists of conjecture and speculation, but is usually spot-on when reporting future development projects.
Why should I read it? To most its residents, Louisville is perhaps best known as a system of interconnected neighborhoods that blend together to make a complex cityscape. For each neighborhood, there are micro-communities which can be further broken down to smaller blocks and regions. Here to keep track of it all is Broken Sidewalk. If a new bike lane is proposed to be installed in Germantown, or if 21c Museum Hotel plans to bring in a golden statue of Michelangelo’s David, Broken Sidewalk is likely the first to get the scoop. From the infinitesimally small neighborhood projects, to the hulking KFC Yum! Center-type developments, this is the place to see the evolution of your very own backyard.
What is it? With Louisville emerging as a city of foodies, it may come as no surprise that we have an online guide to local restaurants, shops and events – written by locals.
Why should I read it? Quick, just off the top of your head, name your top-ten favorite restaurants in Louisville. Now think of how many of those are franchised chains and how many are locally owned. Think Jack Fry’s, Toast on Market, Hillbilly Tea or Queen of Sheba. That’s right. Some of the best-reviewed places in the city are operated by our very own neighbors. If you want to help a brother out and support the community, Consuming Louisville is the place to go for news and updates on all things local.