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Town Participates in Plant A Row for the Hungry Program

June 26, 2015
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Town Participates in Plant A Row for the Hungry Program

North Hempstead, NY – The front of Town Hall has turned into a symbolic farm in the form of a large artist-painted planter brimming with vegetable plants. Town of North Hempstead Supervisor Judi Bosworth and the Town Board have joined in supporting Plant A Row for the Hungry (PAR) of Port Washington. PAR is part of a national program that encourages gardeners to grow additional produce beyond what they consume and deliver it to a distribution point in town. Participants in the local PAR program can bring their produce to the Bayles Garden Center, 88 South Bayles Avenue in Port Washington.

“This wonderful program combines the experience of growing your own produce with the ability to help feed those in need,” said Supervisor Judi Bosworth. “We are proud to be working with Plant A Row for the Hungry to help bring awareness to hunger in America and in our own backyard.”

North Hempstead’s Town Hall, located at 220 Plandome Road in Manhasset, is now home to a planter painted with local native birds. There are more than 50 Plant A Row for the Hungry painted planters located throughout the Port Washington area. The planter featured at Town Hall is currently growing eggplant, cherry tomatoes, basil, peppers, cucumbers, kale and more. The program provides anyone willing to try their hand at growing with the planter and a variety of vegetables for a donation of $90.

The PAR program was created by local Port Washington resident and PAR Chief Vegetable Garden Executive Marv Makofsky, who received his inspiration from the Charter Oak Cultural Center in Hartford, CT, a multi-cultural arts center that set out painted planters with vegetables all over downtown Hartford to help feed the homeless. Inspired by this initiative, Makofsky sought to create a similar program in Port Washington. He looked to the Port Chamber of Commerce and churches and synagogues for support and also approached local artists to contribute their skills to paint 50 planters, which are now located throughout the community.

“In the more than 30 years that my family has lived here, I have never ceased to be amazed by the creative generosity of the Port Community, which is why we attempted to work on a project as important as this, confident that we could succeed and we have,” said Mr. Makofsky. “We also desire to share our program with surrounding communities and beyond, to help make a difference in the quality of life for everyone.”

In the past two years alone, 6,500 pounds of produce has been distributed and they expect even more this year. PAR, now in its sixth year, also works with more than 950 children from various local schools to teach them to plant their own vegetables and take them home for family gardening. The children learn the value of growing and eating nutritional food and sharing with the needy.

Have you tuned into North Hempstead TV lately? View all of our great programming on Channels 18 or 63 on Cablevision or Channel 46 on Verizon, or visit www.myNHTV.com or www.youtube.com/townofnorthhempstead.

Town of North Hempstead Supervisor Judi Bosworth and Plant a Row for the Hungry Chief Vegetable Garden Executive Marv Makofsky, look over the planter that will sit in front of Town Hall.

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