Opportunities are in bloom for the Sandy Public Library and AntFarm. Recently, the two groups applied for and received a $2,000 grant from the Oregon Food Bank.
This grant will aid the library in building a learning garden, expanding its mobile seed library and paying for gardening-related programs.
"I'm thrilled," said Susie Jenkins, librarian in charge of adult programming. "All along I expected it to be donated materials and volunteer speakers, and to get this infusion is (great)."
Jenkins hopes these funds will help expand the library's available resources and possibly help others start their own seed-sharing programs.
"The ultimate goal of the Sandy Seed Library is more than just gardening," Jenkins said. "To create a knowledge base within our area for people to learn how to save their own seeds. My ultimate goal is to find our area in a place of self sustainability, so our local people are able to produce the food we need here locally."
In the same vein, both groups have decided to partner to host a seed-to-supper event to close out the season for the Mount Hood Farmers Market.
"We've been wanting to do some kind of event to bring people in," said Nunpa, AntFarm executive director. "(We want to show people) 'Look. You can grow these things in your back yard.' Let's do something that people actually get to experience that's educational and nutritious and healthy, but fun."
The supper will be cooked by Daniel DeHay, executive chef from Mt. Hood Meadows, and consist of all local ingredients from vendors at the market and other Sandy-area farmers.
Admission to the meal on Sept. 8, will also be free of charge.
"These are the kinds of opportunities that really create community," Nunpa noted. "I love that. That's the purpose of this grant, to network community."