October Meeting Minutes- 2016 Year in Review

 

Grayson LandCare 2016 Review

Highlights for 2016

  • Our New Office.  We now have a street presence with beautiful Todd Price signsvisible to both east and westbound traffic. Many people donated money anditems to furnish the office; special thanks to the Charlotte Hanes and theMatthews Foundation for their generous donations; to Fayma Nye for space planning advice, to Lukas Burgher & Scott J-R for building the beautiful andfunctional white-board/bulletin board/rolling room dividers.
    The only thing left onour wish list is a ceiling-mounted projector, for which we are still accepting donations.
  • We were invited to submit a budget request to the County and we did so, for $5,000 to advance ongoing projects. In a very tight and efficient budget, we were allocated $3,000, which is a phenomenal statement of support from the County
    and an acknowledgement of our mutual goals.
  • Our 9th Annual Land Stewardship Contest was held in April. The first place winner used her prize money to travel to the national FLA contest, where she won a medal for her project! Katie Trozzo presented the Contest at the National
    Small Farm Contest in September as an example of outreach to youth.
  • First Friday Film Series was a big success with average attendance of 25-30. Donations covered the cost of the movies. There will be a meeting in Jan to decide the upcoming titles for 2017. Let me know if you would like to help with
    this effort and/or suggest a movie.
  • Independence Farmers Market – Michelle gave this report. We had another great year, with more children and young families attending, thanks to Abby Williams’ creative activities each week. The online market is open year-round,
    with pick-up at the office from 4-6 pm each Wednesday. Please note this change from Friday morning pick-ups in the past.
  • We have a revamped Website, thanks to Cynthia Taylor and Faith Hinkle. Please take a look periodically. You can easily join, renew your membership or donate through the website.
  • And speaking of the Internet, we are now a listed non-profit in the Amazon Smile program. As you shop on Amazon or Amazon Prime, 0.5% of your purchases will come directly to us as a quarterly donation. Use this link:
    http://smile.amazon.com/ch/16-1773056
  • Rick Cavey secured a Beginning Farmer & Rancher mini-grant and took beginning and aspiring farmers, along with their experienced mentors, to the Mother Earth News Fair in Asheville to initiate transfer of local knowledge about
    farming.
  • As part of our partnership with COGS on permaculture, a Permaculture Design Course (PDC) will be offered, leading to a PDC certificate after completing 72 hrs of workshops and field work. Normally an expensive endeavor, we will offer
    this course for free. If you are not signed up and would like to, please e-mail Cynthia Taylor before November 10th.
  • Other highlights of the year included:
    • Hosting Anthony Flaccavento’s book tour and a breakfast discussion with him for past and upcoming Board members
    • Field Trip to River Ridge’s berry farm operation
    • Field Trip to Pulaski Grow in Draper.
  • What’s On the Horizon?
    • Move from Committees to Projects. We are trying a new structure to get members involved in projects—Fewer meetings, more action! Anyone can propose a project; and if they succeed in getting a few more people to join them,
      they can request a mini-grant from GLC’s budget to help them get started. We have been successful in attracting new members who like our mission and enjoy meeting like-minded people; we want to do better at involving them and their
      talents and experience in projects that advance the “triple bottom line” – Economy, Environment, and community.
    • We had five mini-TED talks at the August meeting to let people know about ongoing and proposed projects, and there will be more at the December meeting. Please come and join in, so we can have more impact. As one example of a project, Moonshadow Farm & Windy Hill Farm will be harvesting 100 lbs of dry weight of black cohosh. The farms were certified organic and forest grown to garner the best price per pound. This is a pilot project and, if successful, this could provide an income opportunity for other farms in the area.
    • New Date and Location for Save Green. We are partnering with the State Forestry Division to have our Save Green Event on Earth Day in 2017! We will have it at the Forestry offices and possibly spill over into the new Matthews
      Orchard space across Rt. 58. Stay tuned, and let me know if you would like to help with planning.
    • Hiring. We are planning to hire a part-time operating manager, and we are discussing the need for a paid Executive Director. Grayson LandCare has come this far with only volunteer labor (with the exception of the Independence
      Farmers Market), and that limits what we are able to do. So our Board and Executive Committee will be exploring this possibility as we meet in the new year.
  • Vice-President John Fant offered a slate of nominees for Officers and at-large Board members, which was approved unanimously.
    • As of January 2017:
      President – Kathy Cole
      Vice-President – Cynthia Taylor
      Secretary – Rick Cavey
      Treasurer – Anita Simpson
      Communications – Faith Hinkle
      Past President – Danny Boyer
      At-Large – Bev Fermor
      At-Large – Michael Jenkins
      At-Large – Nancy Liebrecht
      At-Large – Angie Lawson

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