End of Year 2013 Update

Dear Block Association & Garden Members,

Thinking back on 2013, I’m incredibly proud of all the hard work we’ve seen from the New West 123rd Street Block Association and Community Garden members. It was a very productive and positive year: we welcomed over twenty new BA members, had scores of new faces at our monthly meetings and worked together to rebuild the Community Garden, which will re-open in the spring. In short, you’ve all helped make our community a better place to live.

Particular thanks are due:

To those who led the Citizen’s Committee for New York grant application effort, which resulted in the BA and Garden being awarded a grant to help with the garden rebuild.

To Kenneth Williams from GreenThumb for his continued help in making sure we had what we needed to restore the community garden, and especially Kenny’s aid in securing a brand new fence for the front of the garden.

Finally, to the many neighbors that came out to the garden each weekend and contributed however they could to put our community garden back together! Together, we accomplished so much. Here’s just a few of the things we did:
Moved 40 yards of soil, 20 yards of sand and 20 yards of wood chips
Built 13 garden boxes
Installed a new arbor
Organized the new tool shed
Installed and edged the new blue stone patio and pathways
Planted 14 new trees, 400 bulbs, 300 perennials, 30 shrubs including blueberry and raspberry bushes
Re-installed our community message board

A few notes regarding garden boxes:
IMPORTANT: All full-sized boxes will be split in half, regardless of past membership and past box-holders are not guaranteed a box in the spring. This decision was made in order to accommodate an uptick in interest from the community, and resolve past challenges with box tenure.
Garden boxes will be available to dues-paying Garden members on a first come, first serve basis, beginning on March 19th, when we hold our first 2014 meeting and start collecting dues.
If there is an overwhelming turnout for the boxes, a lottery system may be necessary to allocate the boxes.
Nothing is set in stone, so if you have any thoughts on this process please feel free to email the BA with your suggestions.

We will take a winter recess from our monthly meetings, and reconvene on March 19th, 2014. During that meeting we’ll discuss 2014 plans, collect dues for the 2014 Block Association and Garden membership, and start a list for garden boxes.

Again, many thanks to all who participated this year and we look forward to your continued participation and support in 2014.

Have a safe and happy holiday season.
Aaron Albano
President of the New West 123rd St. Block Association

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