Kids Dice Vegetables For Healthy Pizzas And Learn About Nutrition

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN — Kid chefs learned that a healthy twist on a traditionally baked dish was surprisingly tasty.

Children of the Oliviet Boys and Girls Club made no-bake pizzas with garden fresh vegetables last week at the Ricketts Community Center.

The youth cooking class is part of a summer nutritional program at the club.

Kristin Robinson, nutrition major at the University of Pittsburgh, is working alongside MOSAIC garden manager Laura Washington this summer to teach the kids about healthy eating.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/lifestyle/20140721/kids-dice-vegetables-for-healthy-pizzas-and-learn-about-nutrition

Eat Fresh At Saturday’s MOSAIC Community Garden Party In Pottstown

teacher-lauraPOTTSTOWN, PA — The local community garden will show how easy vegetable crops can go from the ground to the dining table.

The MOSAIC Land Trust is hosting a garden party at their new 615 Chestnut St. community garden on Saturday from 2 to 4 p.m.

The party will include music, resources on healthy living and fresh vegetables from the garden.

“We are going to do a healthy garden to grill event,” said Laura Washington, garden manager.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/lifestyle/20140716/eat-fresh-at-saturdays-community-garden-party-in-pottstown

MOSAIC COMMUNITY LAND TRUST Home Garden Contest

Originally posted on MOSAIC Community Land Trust:

Calling All Pottstown Homeowners and Residents of Rental Properties! Enhance the appearance of your home and neighborhood with a beautiful garden or by having decorative containers or window boxes of flowers and plants for a chance to win a cash prize! Eligible contestants include all Pottstown residence located within the area bordered by North Charlotte St. on the west, North Adams Street on the east, East High Street on the south and Beech Street on the north.
Now…Let’s Get Growing!

Click here to get all the details and get entry form:  MOSAIC Contest Flyer 2014

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Container Gardens Spring Up In Pottstown, Great Alternative For Beginners

ImageProxy (1)POTTSTOWN — The sun is shining on some days and the rain is pouring on others, which makes it the season of gardening.

Although it’s the season to grow, gardening can seem intimidating for people who’ve never done it before.

Garden manager Laura Washington of the MOSAIC Pottstown Community Gardens said container gardening is a great option for beginners.

“It allows for gardeners to contain their garden in a small space,” she said.

Container gardening is also preferable for people with limitations such as arthritis in their knees, Washington said. People can place their carton on a stool or tabletop and work sitting down, she said.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/lifestyle/20140429/container-gardens-spring-up-in-pottstown-great-alternative-for-beginners

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Plotting And Planning And Digging..Oh My! MOSAIC Community Gardens Prepared For Planting Season

photoOn Saturday, April 5, the MOSAIC CLT spent a day in community preparing our gardens for the coming growing season! Neighbors and friends swept, dug, and spread compost and smiles at our two gardens at 423 and 615 Chestnut Street. We’ll have another Garden Day on April 12 from Noon to 3 PM, and again on Wednesday, April 23 from 2 – 3 PM.

Come grow with the MOSAIC Community Land Trust!

Saturday, April 12 - Volunteer Day at the Gardens (423 and 615 Chestnut Street) from 12 – 3PM

Please plan on meeting at the 423 Chestnut Street location prior to start

Wednesday, April 23 - Volunteer Day at the Gardens (423 and 615 Chestnut Street) from 2 – 3PM

Please plan on meeting at the 423 Chestnut Street location prior to start.

COMING SOON: MOSAIC’s 2nd Beautification Contest-Prizes Awarded! Keep checking our website for more details!

Upcoming Events

Would You Love to Teach a Workshop or Attend a Table Event? Let us know! Review the dates below and send an email to wash5000@msn.com to learn more about workshop and table event activities!

Saturday, April 12, 2014 – Year of the Young Child 9AM – 11AM happening at the YMCA located at 724 N. Adams Street, Pottstown

Tuesday, April 22, 2014 – Organic Gardening Workshop from 6 – 7PM at the Pottstown Library located at 500 E High Street, Pottstown

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MOSAIC Community Garden Manager To Facilitate Two Upcoming Workshops

ImageProxy (1)Laura Washington

Environmental Health & Safety Committee

Laura Washington is the Garden Manager for the Mosaic Community Land Trust.  As a certified herbalist, weight and lifestyle coach, and a Level 1 CrossFit trainer, Laura has a passion for organic foods, natural healing and physical activity.  She also serves as a board member for the Pottstown Karate Club.  As a member of the TCN Environmental Health & Safety Committee, Laura conducts organic gardening workshops for the community.  She will be facilitating two upcoming workshops this month.  One will be held on Friday, April 11th at 10:30 am at the Pottstown Seniors’ Center and a second workshop on April 22nd at 6:00pm at the Pottstown Regional Public Library.  “We are proud to have her as a member of the Committee,” stated Robyn Slater, committee co-chair.
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Upcoming Mosaic Community Land Trust Events

These events are listed on the monthly activity calendars found on the Calendars/Documents/Forms page on their website. This post is providing detailed information on each event.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014 – 5:15 – 8:00 PM

Brookside County Club

850 N. Adams Street

Pottstown, PA 19464

“March into Healthy Eating” Event

The Healthy Woman program at Pottstown Memorial Medical Center will hold a “March into Healthy Eating” event on Wednesday, March 12th at Brookside Country Club from 5:15 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. This event will feature an informative evening of food, facts, and fun ways to eat green. Tickets are priced at $15 per person.

Scott Bailey, Director of Food and Nutritional Services at Pottstown Memorial Medical Center will present “30 Days to Green Your Diet,” and the benefits of adding something green to every meal. In addition, Laura Washington who represents the MOSAIC Community Land Trust Gardens in Pottstown, will present the benefits of buying local and green.

For more information or to register, visit the HEALTHY WOMAN EVENTS page or call (610) 327-7699.

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Thursday, March 27, 2014 – 6:00 – 7:30 PM

MOSAIC Community Land Trust

10 S Hanover Street

Pottstown, PA 19464

Board Meeting

Open to those who wish to learn more or share ideas regarding the MOSAIC Community Land Trust and the Community Gardens in our area.

Please send an email using the “contact us” page on our website to let us know of your plans to attend the meeting: mosaicclt.org

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Saturday, March 29, 2014 – 5:00 – 8:00 PM

MOSAIC Community Land Trust

10 S Hanover Street

Pottstown, PA 19464

Community Garden Social

Please plan to attend this fun and educational event! We will uncover what it is like to be on the land trust board, or a member of one of the MOSAIC’s productive committees!  If you have ever considered volunteering for a non-profit now is the time! There are great things happening (large and small) by way of the land trust that have long-lasting, positive impacts in our community!

Make plans to attend the Social to find out more about the amazing opportunities!

Please send an email using the “contact us” page on our website to let us know of your plans to attend the social: mosaicclt.org

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Friday, April 22, 2014 – 6:00 PM

Pottstown Public Library

500 E High Street

Pottstown, PA 19464

Small Space Gardening Workshop

Learn the basics in household gardening and fresh ideas on how to maximize your small garden space to reap a hearty and healthy harvest through this interactive workshop!

Make plans to ATTEND this FREE event!

Please send an email using the “contact us” page on our website to let us know of your plans to attend the social: mosaicclt.org

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Beech Street Factory: Arts-Based Community Revitalization In Pottstown

The Beech Street Factory is a $12.5-million, 30-year investment in Pottstown’s future. With this project, Genesis Housing Corporation and Housing Visions propose not only to rehabilitate a vacant, prominent building in the Borough’s National Register Historic District, but also to spark renewed focus on the arts in Pottstown.

Pottstown has seen a cultural resurgence in recent years. Decades of hard work by organizations such as ArtFusion, Steel River Playhouse, the Pottstown Area Artists’ Guild, Montgomery County Community College, The Hill School Farnsworth Art Museum, and other arts-oriented organizations have highlighted the importance of cultivating visual, performing, and fine arts in Pottstown. More recently, the formation of CreativeMontCo has solidified county-wide interest in the arts. And ongoing investment by Genesis Housing Corporation, Mosaic Community Land Trust, the National Trust Main Street Program, and the Borough of Pottstown have helped to strengthen the overall quality of life in in the Borough by enhancing the public streetscape and laying the groundwork for further investment.

The Beech Street Factory proposes to capitalize on these long-standing efforts and help take them to the next level. Through their development expertise and knowledge of funding programs, Housing Visions and Genesis are planning to convert the old Fecera’s furniture warehouse into a 60,000-square-foot, mixed-use arts center. The ground floor will include 3,000 square feet of energy-efficient, financially sustainable space for ArtFusion, Pottstown’s long-running and much-loved non-profit community arts center.. And the remainder of the building will provide 43 loft, industrial-style apartments to artists and other interested residents. With 14 unique floor plans, exposed brick walls, plenty of natural light, and amenities including a landscaped courtyard, community room, resident computer lab, elevator, and off-street parking, the Beech Street Factory will provide inspiring spaces for Pottstown’s creative community to call home.

The combination of commercial and residential space will ensure a “24-hour” community at the Beech Street Factory, where the busy hum of ArtFusion students during the day gives way to quiet creativity among individual residents at night. The Beech Street Factory will seek to engage with the larger Pottstown community by hosting gallery events at ArtFusion and in the building’s resident community room and open front porch. Residents will be encouraged through Housing Visions scholarships to take classes at ArtFusion, and similarly, members of ArtFusion may wish to apply for residency at the Factory. Additionally, Housing Visions plans to market the residential units to qualified tenants throughout the region by advertising in local arts publications, print and social media, and at local arts events.

The Beech Street Factory provides the catalyst for a renewed conversation about creating a formal Pottstown Arts District. The developers plan to participate on a new Arts Task Force, supporting the Mosaic Community Land Trust in their effort to create an Artist Relocation Program around homeownership in the Beech Street Neighborhood. Through Housing Tax Credit funding, Housing Visions commits its expertise and resources to help improve the quality of life in Pottstown over the next 30 years. By sharing their extensive experience in creative financing and redevelopment of historic properties, Housing Visions and Genesis hope to foster a renewed, stronger emphasis on neighborhood revitalization and quality of life in Pottstown.

By Heather Schroeder, Development Project Manager, Housing Visions

Editor’s thoughts:  This project is gaining supporters. Here is this list, so far:

U.S. Representative Gerlach

Creative MontCo

ArtFusion

Steel River Playhouse

Genesis

Michael Horn, Architect

We feel this project could be the “game changing” catalyst that will finally propel Pottstown’s Arts Revitalization movement forward. Successful completion of a major project in Pottstown would send the signal to funding agencies, investors and developers that Pottstown is now working together toward a common goal. We urge Pottstown Borough Council to get on board with this project.

The biggest thing holding Pottstown back has been the inability of all parties to find common ground and work together. Now that Housing Visions has gotten on board with Pottstown’s desire to be something more than another dumping ground for Montgomery County’s social service ills, and made significant changes to this project, we feel this version is now worthy of our support as well.

We feel the last paragraph regarding the creation of an “arts district” and an artist relocation program is a key component of this project. We have posted about Oil City‘s artist relocation program and how it has helped transform this much smaller and more remote community in Venango County. Pottstown’s excellent location and easy access to Philadelphia, the Lehigh Valley, Reading and Lancaster only improve the chances for success.

We think you will see support continue to build from other stakeholders in the Tri-County area. A revitalized Pottstown benefits EVERYBODY in the 19464,19465 zip codes, and beyond.

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Organic Gardending Worshops To Be Held In Pottstown

laura-washingtonLaura Washington, Garden Manager for the Mosaic Community Land Trust in Pottstown will hold two organic gardening worships:

  • April 11, 2014 at 10:30am - Pottstown Area Seniors’ Center, 288 Moser Rd, Pottstown

  • April 22, 2014 at 6:00pm - Pottstown Regional Public Library; 500 E. High Street, Pottstown

These free workshops are presented by the TCN Environmental Health and Safety Committee.

To register call 610-705-3301, Ext 2

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MOSAIC CLT’s Community Gardens Is Holding A Christmas Tree Sale!

Christmas Tree (1)

Christmas Tree (1) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Please come and purchase your Christmas Tree in support of MOSAIC Community Land Trust Saturday and Sunday, December 7-8 2:00 PM-7:00 PM at the Community Garden at 423 Chestnut Street

We are offering a $5.00 discount for all orders placed prior to our tree sale.  Please use the attached order form to purchase your tree by Friday, November 29.

If you cannot complete the form online, please email your selection to Laura Washington at wash5000@msn.com with your payment information and we will reserve your tree! 

Or join us at the garden and purchase your tree!  We will be at the garden December 7th and 8th from 2 to 7 PM, singing carols, sipping hot cocoa, and getting into the holiday spirit, so please stop by!

Hope to see you December 7th and 8th at the Garden!  Thank you for your ongoing support of Community Gardens in our neighborhoods!  Happy Holidays everyone!

Tree PreOrder Form

Mosaic Community Garden Wins Excellence In Planning And Design Montgomery Award

teacher-lauraThe Mosaic Community Garden, located in Pottstown Borough, received a 2013 Montgomery Award for creative vision, successful collaboration, strong community involvement, and positive neighborhood impact. This popular garden offers an attractive gathering place for residents to grow a variety of produce and learn about healthy living.

To read the entire article and view the pictures, click here to open the PDF file: 2013 Montgomery Awards

The Produce And Information Stand Will Open Again This Saturday At The Mosaic Community Garden

cropped-20130727_104625.jpgThanks to our generous garden members and our generous garden plots, we have plenty tomatoes, green peppers, herbs and local fruit for sale!

Stop by and pick up the latest copy of Organic Gardening or other information on food justice and where to buy fresh, wholesome foods in our local area!  We have a list of local organizations and companies who offer nothing but the best.  Pick up a copy during your garden visit this Saturday!

The stand and information stand will be open for business on Saturday, October 5th at 9:30 AM sharp!

Be sure to get there early so you don’t miss out on some of the super-fresh items being offered Saturday!  This may be your last chance…

Pottstown’s Mosaic Community Garden To Open Produce And Information Stand

cropped-20130727_104625.jpgWe are happy to announce the opening day of our Produce and Information Stand!

The children of our youth program and several volunteers had a hand in tending the earth and growing veggies.  Earlier this summer, they diligently worked to build the stand to bring the “fruits of their labor” to your table!!

On September 7th the kids and volunteers will staff the Produce Stand to sell fresh produce, herbs, local peaches and other healthy goodies, each Saturday morning from 9:30 AM – 12 noon, through September 28th, 2013.

In addition, we will have information regarding organic gardening and other resources to find out more about our local CSAs and organic grocery stores.  Lastly, the public can learn more about what they can do to ensure every family has access to healthier food options in our area.

Look for the Produce and Information Stand in front of the gardens at 423 Chestnut Street in Pottstown, (you canʼt miss us)!!

Priced right for you, all of the proceeds from the produce stand will enable MOSAIC to continue to develop workshops and other fun, educational activities for young and old alike; while educating individuals in food justice and security.  All the while, the young farmers will be learning sales skills, marketing and public relations.

Now, for a special thanks to our sponsor: Global Advanced Metals of Boyertown, for their generous donation and support.  Global Advanced Metals processes a metal called “tantalum,” found in Australia.  Their core values of safety, health and environmental excellence guide the work that they do and dovetails nicely with our healthy outlook too!!

Local honey will be available for purchase as well.  The garden has its own bee hive for pollination, tended by Lee Mauger.

Laura Washington, Gardens Manager

Mosaic Community Garden Announces Beautification Contest Winners

How it all began:  In the summer of 2012, Dick Heylmun, the owner of Pine Tree Hill Farm, contacted Mosaic Community Land Trust, after learning about their work in the Community garden on Chestnut Street.

Mr Heylmun, an avid gardener himself, conceived of the idea to offer prize money to people living in the Beech to High Street, Adams to Charlotte Street area for creating beautiful street-side gardens and plantings. He knows how pretty a block can be when the residents take pride in their homes and gardens and he revels in the joy and sense of pride that gardens bring to the gardener and all who pass by.

Mosaic partnered with the Pottstown Garden club to develop, advertise and judge the contest. Flyers were distributed to all the homes in the area while the Mercury helped promote the contest in an article about both the garden contest.

With only nine entries for this competition, the first of its kind in the core neighborhood, we hope to inspire confidence in others to enter next year.  The gardeners chose one of three categories and most of the entries were in the “front garden and planters combined” category.

Two members from the Pottstown Garden Club, Nancy Toothacher and Karin Albera, accompanied board member, Gretchen Lea, (who is also a Penn State Master Gardner), and Laura Washington, the MOSAIC garden manager, as they set out one very hot afternoon to walk the blocks and judge the gardens.  It was hard, yet fun and rewarding.

The contestants showed a sense of pride and enthusiasm about their creations, and had a variety of reasons why they chose one plant or another and why they chose to place them where they did.

Some plants have personal meaning, like beautiful memories and experiences of the gardens and gardeners we have known and loved -they are place makers in our lives. Gardens are often creative expressions of their creators.  Knowing this, while judging makes the job difficult, but all the more fun.

Asking a gardener about their gardens is like possessing the key to a box, open it up and you’ll find out something about what’s inside.

The judges passed several pretty and interesting gardens along the way and wished that those gardens had been entered in the contest too.  When asked why they didn’t enter, a few folks proclaimed… “Mine is not quite good enough”.  Some gardeners can be too hard on themselves. Working with nature is not easy. Nature cannot be controlled.  That makes gardening all the more challenging and rewarding.  I beg all who dig in the soil to keep up the confidence to keep planting. Every garden is a unique expression of the gardener.

20130714_173300_resizedI have entered my garden in shows and contests, even though they weren’t perfect, because others get joy in seeing them.  It is rewarding to watch people blossom when they see what you have accomplished.  It too is a great way to connect with one another. For me, gardening is a great reason to be outside and to work with Mother Nature as I try to express myself.

The Winners Are:

For Planters and window boxes:

Athena Singer 1st prize 352 Walnut Street $150

Anna Johnson 2nd prize 515 Chestnut Street $ 75

20130711_171523_resizedThe Garden awards and prize money were presented Sunday July 14th at 5 o’clock at the MOSAIC Community Garden, followed by a get together with refreshments, conversation and friendship.

We hope you will take the time to walk through the neighborhood and check out the winner’s gardens as well as all the other gardens that capture the imagination.

Garden by garden the Mosaic Community Land Trust’s designated areas will blossom, as the first garden has done, with people sharing stories, recipes, making new friends, learning about their gardens, trading plants and ideas while enjoying the fruits of their labor.

Thank you Dick Helymun for your great idea and generosity!

Mosaic would like to make the Beautification Contest an annual tradition.  If you would like to make a donation or take part we’d love to hear from you.

mosaicclt@gmail.com for more info

Green Thumbs Up and Thanks to Everyone Involved!

Gretchen Lea

Pottstown Community Garden Taking Root In Second Site

POTTSTOWN — Say goodbye to the crumbling eyesore, say hello to Pottstown’s second community garden.

The continuing efforts by the Mosaic Community Land Trust to transform falling-down buildings and lots into productive assets took another step forward this week with the demolition of 615 Chestnut St.; the vacant site of a former neighborhood store will soon become a place where local residents can grow food for their tables and flowers for their enjoyment.

The property was owned for several years “by a fellow down in Philadelphia who eventually gave up on owning the property because he didn’t want to have to pay to demolish it, so he donated it to the land trust,” said David Jackson, chairman of the land trust’s board of directors.

That leverage, he said, was the result of pressure from the borough codes department, which cited the property repeatedly for violations.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130610/NEWS01/130609277/pottstown-community-garden-taking-root-in-second-site

Pottstown’s Mosaic Community Land Trust Sponsors Garden Contest

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To visit their website, click here:  http://pottstownclt.wordpress.com/  You can print out a full-sized application found under the Gardens page.  The link is under the flyer.

Blighted Pottstown House Owned By State Rep.’s Chief Of Staff

Editor’s note:  There are a couple of take away items here.  a.  The Pottstown Codes Department evidently can’t process an address change.  Does that require a $5,000.00 “donation”?  b.  The house is in poor condition and needs repairs.  c.  This illustrates the pitfalls of being an “investor” in Pottstown.  Most likely that amount of damage didn’t happen overnight, from the sounds of the report.  How often are problem properties being checked on by an owner or property manager?  It sounds like the house should be demolished except the owner owes money to the bank.  It will be a LONG wait until conditions improve enough in that neighborhood to make fixing up this property economically viable.  So just add another vacant property to Pottstown’s housing stock.

POTTSTOWN — The district chief of staff for state Rep. Mark Painter, D-146th Dist., is the owner of a Walnut Street home that the borough has recently identified as “blighted.”

The designation was advertised in the legal notices of Wednesday’s edition of The Mercury.

Michael A. Lavanga, who heads up Painter’s district office in Sanatoga and has appeared on his behalf at local government meetings, expressed surprise Wednesday when contacted by a reporter about the advertisement.

According to the legal notice, Lavanga has 30 days to make repairs to the property including repairing or replacing rain gutters, loose paint, windows and the front steps to 409 Walnut St.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20130412/NEWS04/130419776/blighted-pottstown-house-owned-by-state-rep-s-chief-of-staff#full_story