PRAIRIE GROVE -- A new volunteer group, called Grow the Grove Community Garden, has been organized to start a new garden this year at Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park.
Kylee Hevrdejs, park interpreter, also is the one heading up the new volunteer group. She said the garden will be a partnership between the new group and the state park.
Hevrdejs said she's seen where people who live in Prairie Grove have posted on social media that a community garden would be nice in Prairie Grove. Her immediate thought, she said, was that the state park could provide space for a community garden.
"The park is allowing them (Grow the Grove Community Garden) the space to do it, and I'm the go between for the park and the community group," Hevrdejs said.
One of Hevrdejs' goals as park interpreter is to increase community interest and participation in the state park. She said she wants the community to see it as more than a place with a walking trail.
"I want the community to feel ownership and bridge the gap between the park and the community," Hevrdejs said.
She said the first meeting and work day is open to the public and will be held at 10 a.m., Saturday, April 10, behind the Latta House. The new community garden will be planted in the same spot used as a demonstration garden about six or seven years ago.
The first day, volunteers will finish ground preparation, decide how to organize the garden and then plant vegetable starts. Plants will include tomatoes, peppers, onions, corn and beans.
Volunteers will work out a schedule to make sure the garden continues to be maintained throughout the season, Hevrdejs said.
She said it's important that people who want to be involved show up the first day, so the community group will know how many volunteers will be available to help.
The idea is that those who donate their time will be able to pick vegetables and enjoy the produce. At the same time, Hevrdejs said she wants to offer vegetables to those in the community who need them.
"Fresh food can be expensive and I hope to bridge that gap," Hevrdejs said.
Hevrdejs encouraged those who come to the work day, which she thinks may last about two hours, to bring garden gloves and any gardening tools they think they may need.
She said she will encourage people to wear masks if they are within six feet of people outside their family groups.
For more information, the new group has a Grow the Grove Community Garden Facebook page. This page will be used for announcements and to help organize the volunteer efforts.
Grow the Grove Community Garden
10 a.m., April 10
Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park
Meet behind the Latta House