Pilgrimage to Growing Power Inc

February 12, 2009 at 11:07 am 1 comment

Jan 30, 2009

Day 0: Urban Farm Tales: Growing Power #1

“So what’s your reason for going to the US?”, asked the customs agent at the Toronto Pearson Airport when we tried to explain that we were going to volunteer at Growing Power Inc. Unfortunately it took some time to clear up the situation. The customs agents really need to get out and garden more. I thought about buying them some potted plants to spruce up the security office. It was grey as concrete.

Toronto Pearson Airport

Toronto Pearson Airport

After being delayed at the customs office we missed our flight. Fortunately, the customer service agent on duty was pleasant and helpful, getting us another flight to Chicago for 5 PM. Though the flight wasn’t guaranteed, we were lucky enough to have it confirmed avoiding the trouble of having to re-schedule for 7 PM. David stated, “Wow. A friendly person at the desk makes a huge difference in the experience.” I totally agreed.

Everything after that went off without any additional problems. We caught the bus at Chicago’s O’Hare and traveled to Milwaukee, getting into the intern house around 8:30 PM. You may wonder why we didn’t fly directly to Milwaukee. That’s because the direct flight was more expensive – by roughly 2-3 times (~$600 vs. ~$269). When we walked into the intern house, we were greeted by Nick DeMarsh who generously gave us some of his butternut squash and potato soup (I finished that off on Tuesday).

Chicago O'Hare Airport

Chicago O’Hare Airport

At around 9 PM, our friends from the STOP Community Centre arrived. They too were here to learn more about how Growing Power operated. In the group was Rhonda Teitel-Payne, Urban Agriculture Coordinator for the STOP, Kristin Wheatcroft and Kristen Howe. By that time I was absolutely starving and fortunately the STOP had brought back some Thai leftovers (very salty alas).

All in all, a fair start to the trip. The tour was for 10 am the next day and I wondered what surprises lay in store for us.

Other Photos


Jared Rudolph’s bike in the intern house – he hadn’t had much of a chance to use it since he started work


The bunk beds in the Growing Power intern house

Next: Day 1: Urban Farm Tales: Growing Power #2

Other Links

Picasa Web Albums – FoodCycles
Fini uploading my #Growing Power #FoodCycles trip photos (all 483) check it out @ http://bit.ly/sp2Dh #sustainable #farming #urban #garden

Sunny Lam’s Photostream Feed
[Since I don’t have a Pro account at this time anyway most of my photos are hidden from view unfortunately.]


Sunny is writing about the FoodCycles initiated trip to Growing Power Inc in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA to better understand their operations (and possibly improve on it). Also on the trip is David Wild – fellow board member of FoodCycles. This article is part 2 of his little series. Since he haven’t had Internet connections in 5 days (of the 11/12 day trip) he is writing the first 5 articles backward as he tries to remember everything.


Entry filed under: Agriculture, Compost, Urban Agriculture, Vermicomposting. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

‘Food, Inc.’ film looks at corporate impact on what we eat | Daily Dish | Los Angeles Times Urban Homesteading Workshop Series 2009

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