Seminary and Partners to Begin Urban Agriculture Garden Project

Seminary and Partners to Begin Urban Agriculture Garden Project

April 14, 2009

Sioux Falls Seminary is working together with five local organizations on a newly-formed urban agriculture initiative to aid in the revitalization of the Pettigrew Heights neighborhood. A Kick-Off Celebration for the initiative and its first project was held on Wednesday, April 15 at 2:00 p.m. on the Lowell Math, Science, and Technology Elementary School playground (710 W. 18th Street).

The initiative is a unique partnership between Sioux Falls Seminary, the City of Sioux Falls, Lowell Math, Science and Technology Elementary School, Minnehaha Extension Service, Volunteers of America Dakotas/AmeriCorps VISTA, and the Pettigrew Heights Neighborhood Outreach.

Sioux Falls Mayor Dave Munson and representatives from the other partner organizations shared brief comments at the Kick-Off Celebration. School children also planted seeds for the first project--a garden for Lowell Elementary students and their families. The name for the Garden, A Growing Place, was selected by children and staff and Lowell.

The partnership is committed to growing hope through empowering children and adults. The garden at Lowell Elementary School will become part of the school's curriculum. Students will soon transplant vegetables, fruits, and flowers--which they are already growing--into raised garden beds on the school's playground, and they will continue to care for the gardens throughout their summer break.

"The intent of this initiative is to cultivate an environment that will grow minds, hearts, relationships, leaders, and most importantly an attractive, sustainable Pettigrew Heights neighborhood," said the Rev. Tim Olsen, Director of Operations for Summit House at Sioux Falls Seminary and Urban Agriculture Task Force Chair.

Future projects will also focus on building a sense of community belonging and empowerment. They include training of garden mentors within Pettigrew Heights, teaching residents how to raise food in their backyards, and hosting neighborhood gatherings and festivals.

To learn more about this project and future initiatives, please contact Sioux Falls Seminary by calling 605.336.6588 or emailing

Argus Leader Article from Thursday, April 15

Argus Leader Article from Tuesday, April 14