Farm & Garden Programming

THEARC Farm and Bridge Plots are fostering an appetite for change! Find out more about our accomplishments.

Events & Activities

Build and Fill Days: Community members and volunteers come together to build raised beds,  plant trees and bring to fruition a community designed food space. Build & Fill Days are an opportunity to engage hands on in the expansion of our food production systems East of the River.

Garden Days: A celebrations of site progress and an occasion to celebrate the growth of each season. Parties include tastes of food grown at the farm or garden, highlight East of the River Artist that connect the people to the space, and fun activities for interacting with intergenerational audiences. Garden parties also server as for community outreach and volunteer recruitment efforts.

Seeding Days: Provide local farmers the opportunity to engage communities in the planting of seeds and seedlings at the beginning of the season as well as for farmers to exchange seeds. The exchange creates a community gathering space between farmers to foster collaboration and shared knowledge.

Season Openers: Work days farms use to recruit volunteer help for preparing the farm or garden for the start of the growing season. During a Season Opener, are largest volunteer recruitment is in support of the upcoming season, activities include pulling up weeds and cover crops, turning over beds, and other related tasks needed to get the site into shape. 

Season Extension/Gleaning Days: Serves as an engagement initiative o support community access to receive unclaimed, harvested produce. At the end of the harvest season,  a gleaning day invite community to farms and gardens to “glean” leftover produce while tending to the beds. In order to extend the growing season,  community farmers install mini hoop houses over beds in winter months. 

Taste of the Harvest: Annual celebration highlights a plentiful harvest, the Harvest Dinner serves as a unification event paying homage to the harvests from the season of the BBAR Farms and Gardens. Community members are welcomed to celebrate the work of the farm and plots by tasting recipe submissions from all sites while enjoying an array of performance by East of the River artist. This event foresters community members and site leaders to come together to eat a meal and share food stories, promote healthy eating, and spur more exposure for their growing systems. Locally harvested food makes up the majority of the meal, highlighting East of the River Farmers. 

Farm Fit Volunteer Series: Need a workout? Want to spend more time supporting the Bridge Park Plots and THEARC Farm? You can do both! Similar to a CrossFit, FarmFit is a volunteer series we created to connect physical fitness and farming through targeted exercises that get you and the farm or garden in shape. By participating in a variety of different farming activities, you are sure to leave stronger and more fulfilled!

Health & Wellness Series: Zumba wellness, Thai Chi, Martial Arts, like the Farm Fit series, is a way for people to get outside and burn some calories in their local farm or garden. Zumba, an aerobic fitness program, makes working out a blast with its pillars of Latin music and fun dance moves. Our goal of diverse programs in food space helps to further anchor community toward ownership of BBAR Farm spaces. 

Pop-Up Farm Stands: Similar to a farmer’s market pop-up, farms sell the produce from our gardens and farms that provide a unique type of mobility, making it fun and easy to pop- up at different events throughout D.C.

Seasonal Seed Swaps: Seasonal seed swaps continue to allow community members to exchange seeds and ideas. It is fun to see the difference between Spring, Summer, and Fall crops and to hear about the work that other farmers are doing seasonally.

Recipe Exchanges: Recipe exchanges are ways to connect with community members on how they are cooking their locally grown produce. It is an opportunity to connect over different cooking styles and collect some new recipes yourself. So, bring a recipe and a positive attitude and you might walk away with some great meal ideas. Recipes are debuted at garden parties and the Annual Taste of the Harvest Festival. 

Free Food For You: The series is an opportunity for parents to engage in conversation, cooking demonstrations, or cooking classes focused on taste, affordability, and nutritional density for their family. The series also teaches parents about the assortment of free food resources available in the community, and when and how to access them. These events will serve as an introduction to an organized parent buyers cooperative East of the River.

Parent Food & Buyer’s Coop.: The Parent Food Buyers Coop. gives parents the opportunity to access healthy food by purchasing in bulk in order to provide cost savings. The Coop. promotes participation in THEARC Farms CSA  Program in addition to providing affordable access to staple goods such as rice, flour, oatmeal, etc. Bulk purchase of food drives the price down, making the food cheaper and easier to distribute to many families. The cooperative also teaches parents through a series of workshops covering purchasing, cooking, and nutrition. 

Annual All Partners Meetings: Meetings act as a way for the community of partners to come together and present on the work they are doing within the Food Web East of the River. This closeout meeting has proven to be informative for participants because it highlights lessons learned across sites, failures, successes, synergies, and overall Food Web progress. In addition, it is a positive way to receive feedback and discuss best practices in farming, food systems entrepreneurship, social license and engagement activities, food processing and food storage.