Our project is to install interactive, educational exhibits in each of our four school fruit tree orchards, creatively designed through landscape architecture and visual art. All of the living exhibits (apple, pear and plum trees) will be edible, and all visual exhibits will educate visitors on a self-guided tour through the orchard. Our vision is to inspire others by the beauty and creativity of the fruit trees and art, as well as empower them to grow their own food through the educational material displayed there. The orchards will serve as gathering places for teachers, students, parents and community members, where they can learn about gardening, orcharding, ecology, and how to grow food at home. These four pilot orchards will be living examples of what we plan to do for schools all over Maine.
We will work with Cricket Hunt, Mast Landing, Merriconeag Waldorf, and Waynflete Schools the first year, and we will work with many other schools in subsequent years. Where necessary, this funding will help us build fences to keep out deer, prepare the soil, lay the mulch, plant the trees, and install a drip-irrigation system. The funding will also enable us to create and build signs, kiosks, paintings, and hands-on exhibits detailing the importance of local agriculture and its impact on the environment in all of our orchards. We will empower visitors to grow their own food and make a positive change in the global community.
The money we raise will help pay for the raw materials and building supplies for our exhibits: paints, brushes, wood, kiosks, glass, etc. Financial support will also help cover the costs of putting on workshops and distributing food. (Other costs have already been covered by generous donors, listed on our website: www.retreeus.org. For information on our parent organization, visit www.unitedcharitableprograms.org.)
Supporters of this project will receive rewards such as seeds, fresh produce, trees they can plant at home, and free access to educational workshops at the orchard.
A word on our video...
Special thanks to Cassie Frayer, who provided a camera, tripod, equipment and much of our inspiration for the film. We would also like to thank the students who participated in the film, their teachers, parents, and the school director for making this video possible. And of course, thanks to everyone who likes trees!
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- (60 days)