West End gardens provide yield; veggies delivered to soup kitchen

The West End Association delivered the first vegetables from the community garden over at the former O’Connell School to the soup kitchen on Prospect Street Thursday.

“It is all exciting to see the gardens nice and green and growing,” said West End Association President David Hamelin in a press release from the association.

“Take a ride by and take a look. It is all really pretty impressive,” he said in the press release. He added that sharing the produce is a good way to show the community that the gardens are viable.

Hamelin heads the association of neighbors and business people from the West End. Members of the association care for nine of the 13 raised beds.

Hamelin said in the press release he was very pleased that association members stepped up to fill all the available beds and to care for them daily.

Regarding the donations, Hamelin said in the release that a variety of vegetables would be maturing at different times, so that one week cucumbers might be available, another green peppers.

He added in the release he especially liked the idea that fresh produce was getting to area soup kitchens and food pantries.

“A lot of time, they will get things that have expired or at the end of their life,” Hamelin said in the relesae. “These are fresh off the vine.”

“I like that there are people in the neighborhood who can go in and harvest them for their own use, too,” Hamelin said in the press release.

Tom Morrow, executive director of the Bristol Community Organization, which oversees the all the gardens at O’Connell School, said, “This is a good start to some community gardening in the West End,” according to the press release.

Hamelin said that he was glad to see the original 13 beds were being used and he looked forward to expanding the number of beds next year.