NEWARK, N.J., October 18, 2013 – Urban gardeners and farmers from every Ward in Newark were represented at Greater Newark Conservancy’s 23rd Annual City Gardens Contest Awards Ceremony held recently at the NJIT Campus Center. Conservancy Co-Chair Hans J. Solmssen welcomed the many contest participants and their supporters, and thanked the Conservancy’s sponsors, prize and in-kind donors, staff and volunteers for keeping the tradition alive.
Joining Solmssen and his fellow Conservancy Co-Chair E. Neal Zimmerman were Secretary Mark W. Gordon and board members James M. Porter and Rachel Schwarz, along with special guests Newark Deputy Mayor Adam Zipkin, Food Policy Director Elizabeth Reynoso and Adopt-A-Lot Program Coordinator Carol Harris.
This year’s contestants competed for top honors in categories including Best Home Garden, Best Block in Newark and Best Community Garden noted Justin Allen, the Conservancy’s Director of Community Greening. Allen thanked the participating gardeners as well as the volunteer judges for their hard work and dedication towards making Newark a greener and healthier place to live, work and breathe.
In addition to commemorative certificates provided to all of the winners, the event’s attendees were entered into a raffle for numerous prizes donated by businesses, individuals and organizations that support the Conservancy including beautiful gift baskets, plants from several local nurseries, and gift certificates from local businesses and restaurants. Attendees also enjoyed great food and refreshments donated by some of Newark’s finest restaurants and specialty food providers.
The Conservancy’s Executive Director Robin Dougherty celebrated all of the people involved in the City Gardens Contest over the past 23 years and their ongoing efforts to grow healthy, nutritious produce, beautify their neighborhoods with colorful flowers and trees, contributing to a better quality of life in their urban community. “It speaks to the success of the contest and the competitiveness of Newark’s urban gardeners that many of this year’s contestants have participated before and we look forward to welcoming them all again next year.”
For a complete list of winners, click here.