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RH Meeting Minutes May 19, 2021

Page history last edited by Ruth 1 year, 3 months ago


Draft Minutes of the

Resilient Hartford Special Meeting on the Clifford Park Food Forest



Resilient Hartford Members Present: Marsha Autilio, Frederica Graham, Leah Mosenthal, Laura Simon and Chair Kye Cochran.

Others Present: Becky Chollet, Nancy Russell, Ashton Todd, consultants Cat Buxton & Karen Ganey. 

Staff Present: Matt Osborn, Town Planner.

Resilient Hartford (RH) Chair Kye Cochran called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. and welcomed everyone.  Kye read the “Act 92 remote public meeting script”.  She stated that the purpose of the meeting is to discuss formation of the Clifford Park Food Forest Steering Committee and work teams. 


1.   Review of the May 12th Community Meeting: Frederica Graham gave a brief summary of the May 12th community meeting. 


2.   Timeline: Cat Buxton noted that to start, we need to build up the soil and build community.  She gave a timeline for the project.              

  • ·       Host Educational Workshops via Zoom 

                         1.   Soil Health: Wednesday, May 26th at 6:30 p.m. by Cat Buxton

                         2.   Design & Species: Wednesday, June 9th at 6:30 p.m. by Karen Ganey

                         3.   Finalizing the Design:  Late June, Date to be Determined

  •       Form Steering Committee by the end of May
  •      June: Soil testing and preparations: adding layers of organic materials, planting cover crops
  •      July: Continue building soil and refining the design Submit final design to Parks and Recreation Department and Parks and Recreation Commission for approval.
  •     September - Planting of Phase 1 of design 


3.   Formation of the Steering Committee and Teams: Frederica Graham reported that for the last nine months, Resilient Hartford has had a sub-committee consisting of Kye Cochran, Marsha Autilio and herself, working on the Clifford Park Food Forest project.  She noted that they need more help.  Marsha stated that the community survey about alternative uses at Clifford and Ratcliffe Parks occurred last fall and had a great response and support.  Cat Buxton stated that Karen Ganey and Cat are serving as consultants for the planning portion of the project.  They will continue to be involved in the project following the planning portion but will do so as volunteers.  Cat noted that a key component to the project is long-term Steering Committee that will help maintain the food forest well into the future.     


Cat Buxton listed the four teams for the project.  Folks proceeded to sign up for the teams: 


  1. Spearheading: Kye Cochran
  2. Creation/Action Team: Katie Williams, Laura Simon
  3. Fundraising: Marsha Autilio, Laura Simon, Nancy Russell
  4. Ground Team/Resources/Contact Team: Matt


Nancy Russell, a White River Junction resident and member of the Hartford School Board, a Vermont School Board, founder of the Hartford Community Coalition and small business owner said that she is excited about this project.  She offered to help with fundraising and planting.   


Ashton Todd, White River Junction resident and member of the Hartford Energy Commission, stated that he works in social media, writing tweets and linkenIn, facebook posts for companies.  He noted that a strong social media presence could enhance the project. He is willing to do social media work/promotion on facebook and Instagram to capture the story of community. 


Becky Chollet, a resident of Jericho is a naturopathic physician, stated that she wants to do well by the planet we live on.  She noted that she is currently maxed-out working on the Town Covid Committee so she can’t play a leadership role now, but is interested in participating in the action and design process.  


4.   Update: Cat Buxton reported that she had a meeting with Becka Warren with Vital Communities about increasing food security locally in creative ways.  Cat let Becka know about Clifford Park and the Lyman Rain Garden.  Vital Communities is doing visioning for a more connected food systems that is amplifying the work that everyone is doing.  There could be good collaboration in terms of funding - lots of small projects that need funding, linking with larger organizations and possible work with students from Hartford High School.


        Kye Cochran reported that she has talked with Ottauquechee School Principal Amelia Donahey who has shown interest in the project.


Becky Chollet reported that she reached out to the Hartford Area Career Technology Center to inquire about the Natural Resources Class working in some capacity on the project.

She also reached out to the Dismas House to see if there might be a few interested in participating. 


Kye Cochran stated that she will reach out to West Hartford residents since their involvement is key to the success of the project.   


5.   Tasks and Next Steps: Cat Buxton suggested developing a spreadsheet of volunteers for the project on google docs.  Laura Simon volunteered to put together a spreadsheet of names, contacts, skill sets, etc.  She will make a spreadsheet with the four team categories and a list of people. She also will create a resources page: donations, who and when, approved and schedule to receive.  Frederica agreed to send Laura contacts of people as well as compost sources.   


Cat Buxton suggested sending the notes of this meeting to the e-mail list and include a link to the video.  Matt Osborn volunteered.  


Cat Buxton suggested measuring the space of the Parks and Recreation Department approved alternative use area.  Kye Cochran volunteered. 


Cat Buxton noted that she will work with Dylan Kreis to inspect materials to be used for the project to ensure that we are not bringing in snake worms, poison ivy or other invasives.   


Matt Osborn agreed to promote the workshop. He will send out an e-mail to the group list, post on the Hartford List Serve, the Town website, Town Facebook and Twitter pages and the Valley News Calendar. 


Ashton Todd volunteered to help create social media accounts for the project.


Kye Cochran suggested developing a logo for the project.  It was suggested to consider a logo contest.  


Nancy Russell suggested presenting the project at a Hartford School Board Meeting and think about how to get kids involved. 


6.   Adjournment: Kye Cochran thanked everyone for attending.  The meeting adjourned at 8:08 p.m.

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