Community Gardens of Arlington

Monday, March 07, 2005

Minutes February 7, 2005

The meeting was held on February 7 at 7:00 pm in the Hugh Smith Recreation Center at 1815 New York Avenue.

Present were Cheryn Barnett, David Barnett, Angie Brown, Doug Brown, John Darling, Dale Denton, Christina Hernandez-Castruita (from Goodman Elementary School), Maud Huber, Linda Lawler, Jean-Marie Smith, Stephen Smith, and Al Vincent.

Revisions to the regulations and contract were discussed. A change was approved to replace references in these documents from Steering Committee to Board of Directors. Revisions were approved pending retyping.

Grant status. The latest information is that we are unable to learn when the results of either grant application will be announced. With this in mind we discussed financial alternatives, including selling engraved bricks or stepping stones, displaying donor’s names on signs, and asking local merchants for donations of money or materials. The need for a detailed list of materials was considered essential in pursuing local options.

A related discussion followed that was focused on the sequence of things to do in order to prepare the garden. The first priority expressed was the need for boundaries to be clearly marked by Parks Department personnel, then a survey or consultation to establish the presence or absence of any underground utilities.

Several participants indicated interest in beginning to kill the grass once the area is marked. A number of points will have to be discussed with Gordon Robertson, including the possiblity of Parks Department trucks delivering mulch to the site and assistance with a water line. John Darling volunteered to talk to Gordon.

In anticipation of beginning work, March 19 was set as the first workday for placing paper and mulch to kill grass. A tentative date for a trip to some of the Dallas community gardens is March 12. The next CGA meeting will be held on March 7.

Submitted by John Darling, Acting Secretary

Friday, February 04, 2005

The next steering committee meeting will be held:

Monday, February 7
7:00 pm
Hugh Smith Rec Center Ruby Room
1815 New York Ave., Arlington

All are welcome!

Friday, January 14, 2005

We have a location!

On Monday, January 10, the Parks Board of the Arlington Parks and Recreation Department approved our application to lease property in Bob Cooke Park for our first garden location.

Garden site view from the Craig Hanking Drive. Posted by Hello

Future site of CGA's first garden. Posted by Hello

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Minutes December 6, 2004

The meeting was held on December 6 at 7:00 pm in the Hugh Smith Recreation Center at 1815 New York Avenue.

Present were Cheryn Barnett, David Barnett, Josephine Briggs, Angie Brown, Doug Brown, Grace Darling, John Darling, Raymond Denton, Mara Green, Maud Huber, Linda Lawler, Rachel Lehman, Roy Miliner, Rachel Orozco, Jean-Marie Smith, Stephen Smith, and Al Vincent. Jay Falgout represented the Parks Department. Officer Tracie Baker, Sergeant D. Glenn, Lieutenant Petty, Sergeant T. Anderson, and Officer M. Rodriguez were guests from the Arlington Police Department.

Police officers began the meeting with a detailed report on crime at Hugh Smith Recreation Center and in Bob Cooke Park. The crime rate is lower than that of the surrounding area and was considered low in general. Jay Falgout noted that vandalism is minimal in the park despite busy weekends when considerable trash is generated.

With regard to the issue of fencing, a police officer described a garden in Navasota by the police station. This garden has a 6’ fence and is overseen by a garden club. People required to perform community service do the gardening. Donations by local companies are recognized by signs on the fence. Jay said that we would have access to people needing community service hours through Esther Washington. Police officers had several suggestions: that opening and closing hours would be beneficial, that we should establish contact with Citizens on Patrol, and that we should examine fencing at Manhattan Creek Park. Angie Brown noted that regular hours could be a hardship for some gardeners, and Jay Falgout advised us to beware of liability issues associated with thorny plants used for security hedges.

John Darling reported on the Parks Department Agreement he filled out and submitted to the Parks Board. CGA is the first group to participate in formalizing a relationship with the department through this written agreement. We anticipate a meeting with a subcommittee of the Parks Board in which the agreement will be considered for submission to the entire Parks Board.

Jay Falgout recommended asking the Water Department for help with the water bill and approaching Allen Jones at the landfill to see about free mulch.

Rachel Orozco volunteered to translate anything we need into Spanish, and she knows of some Vietnamese translators.

Bylaws: Linda Lawler presented the version of the bylaws containing revisions worked out at the last meeting, and these were discussed and further revised, with recommendations to include a mission statement and a definition of the steering committee. There was a motion to accept the revised bylaws as discussed, and this was passed.

Stephen Smith discussed the possibility of an alternate site. A large area at St. Matthew Catholic Church could be considered if liability issues can be resolved.

Angie Brown discussed alternate funding approaches and proposed writing a letter to local businesses outlining an Adopt-a-Bed program when the agreement is formalized and the garden has flyers to hand out.

The next meeting of the steering committee will be held at the Hugh Smith Recreation Center on January 3, 2005.

Submitted by John Darling, Acting Secretary

Monday, December 27, 2004

Mailing Address

We now have a mailing address:

Community Gardens of Arlington
P.O. Box 120681
Arlington, TX 76012-0681

Monday, December 20, 2004

Minutes of the meeting on November 3, 2004

The meeting was held on November 3 at 7:00 pm in the Hugh Smith Recreation Center at 1815 New York Avenue.

Present were Cheryn Barnett, David Barnett, Angie Brown, Doug Brown, Grace Darling, John Darling, Dale Denton, Linda Lawler, Lori Riley (representing Rachel Orozco of East Branch Library), Jean-Marie Smith, Stephen Smith, and Al Vincent.

An addition to the previous meeting’s minutes was called for: Both Cheryn and Dave Barnett will act as Treasurer.

Stephen Smith reported that police at the nearby substation have been made aware of CGA plans and will allow us to advertise the garden there.

Bylaws subcommittee: Linda Lawler distributed copies of the proposed bylaws and essentially all of the rest of meeting was devoted to reading, commenting on, and revising the draft version. Stephen suggested incorporating a mission statement into the bylaws, and this will be added. At the end of the reading it was decided to accept the bylaws provisionally until we review the final form at the next meeting.

In response to Stephen Smith’s request for someone to act as Vice President, Angie Brown was nominated and elected. Maud Huber was named chair of the Marketing and Education subcommittee.

In closing it was noted that CGA has received startup money from Arlington Organic Garden Club and Arlington Conservation Council to establish a bank account. The next meeting will be held at Hugh Smith Recreation Center on December 6.

Submitted by John Darling, Acting Secretary

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Minutes October 18, 2004

Community Gardens of Arlington
Minutes of the meeting on October 18, 2004

The third meeting of the steering group was held on October 18 at 7:00 pm in the Arlington Parks and Recreation building at 717 West Main Street.

Present were Cheryn Barnett, Dave Barnett, Angie Brown, Doug Brown, John Darling, Grace Darling, Dale Denton, Maud Huber, Roy Miliner, Gordon Robertson, Jean-Marie Smith, and Stephen Smith.

Gordon Robertson presented a Parks Department update in which he described the new proposed location for the garden, east of the first proposed site. He also discussed the need for a presentation on the proposed community garden to a subcommittee of the Parks Board before it meets again on November 8. The presentation would cover CGA and its relationship to the Parks Department.

Discussion followed and topics included token leases, maintenance agreements, fencing, and the need for a mission statement. Further discussion involved the desirability of identifying recipients for food donations and other details related to producing text for a brochure.

The latter topic inspired discussion of approaches to CGA organization. AOGC members described the advantages of using various services of the Texas Gardens Club and the need for a minimal number of officers in order to conduct business. This resulted in the election of Stephen Smith as President and Dave Barnett as Treasurer of CGA.

The advantages of an independent CGA Web site versus a page on the Parks site were then discussed, as well as the need for approximately $100 to get a Web site started. This resulted in a proposal to request seed money from the boards of AOGC and ACC.

Subcommittee reports:

Site selection and Development – The group has not met; Gordon Robertson covered relevant matters earlier.

Funding – no report

Bylaws and Regulations – Subcommittee has met and agreed on gardener deposits of $10 and steering committee monthly meetings for the time being. Also covered were eligibility requirements: some beds reserved for groups, the rest available on a first come, first served basis. Suggestion: include a nondiscrimination clause in bylaws and other documents. A “no harm” statement will be included in city documents and should be included in CGA documents.

Marketing and Education – This group discussed the need for a flyer with a logo, goals, mission statement, contact person and other details. Angie Brown described the blog she has created for CGA and invited everyone to sign up.

The next meeting will be at Hugh Smith Recreation Center in Bob Cooke Park at 7:00 pm on November 3.

Submitted by John Darling, Acting Secretary