Photo by Chung Chow
At the Richmond Sharing Farm, the garlic is harvested and drying in the attic of the barn. Their ninth annual Metro Vancouver Garlic Festival will be held Sunday, August 20. All they need is more volunteers.
The sale of the farm’s garlic at the festival earns money to fund the running of the site, seeds, tools and other incidentals necessary to grow friendships, farming know-how and hearty food.
The Sharing Farm provides many things for our community; a rural escape on the western edge of Richmond, a place for frustrated apartment dwellers to flex their gardening muscles, a chance for people to meet together to plant and harvest, an outing for seniors to have a snack and work in a garden, a chance to make friends while helping the community and a place that grows food to donate to hungry people in Richmond.
“Last year we donated 21,000 pounds of produce,” said Sarah Drewery, the farm’s executive director. “We donate it to the food bank. That’s primarily what we do and we also donate it to various community meals programs” such as Gilmore United Church and Richmond Family Place.
While Drewery says they have over 1,000 volunteers working at the garden throughout the year, the festival is a special event and not everyone who gardens on a weekday is available to help prepare and staff the Garlic Festival.
If you can’t help by volunteering, consider attending the festival for a good time in the countryside and a chance to do some good by supporting the Sharing Farm.
It is high quality produce, she says.
“Last summer when we had the garlic festival, a guy said, ‘Your garlic is so expensive. I can go to the store and buy it for pennies.’”
That’s because, at the Sharing Farm Garlic Festival, Drewery says, “you are buying organic. Everything is as organic as we can make it. It would be too expensive to have the fields certified organic but all we put into growing is free of pesticides. All we use is manure and soil and sun.”
And one could add, the happy hard work of many, many willing volunteers.
For more information or to volunteer: http://metrovangarlicfest.ca/volunteer-registration/