Nine communities to receive 2017 Greening of Arkansas grants
By Ryan McGeeney
U of A System Division of Agriculture
Jan. 4, 2018
- $15,000 in grant money awarded to nine communities
- Grant funding, along with horticulture scholarships, are primary beneficiaries of Arkansas Flower and Garden Show proceeds
(Donwload this story in MS Word format here.)
LITTLE ROCK — Nine communities across Arkansas will receive a combined total of $15,000 in grant funding through the Greening of Arkansas Grant Program.
From a larger pool of applicants, the nine communities were contacted in late December that their respective grant applications had been approved. 2017 marked the eleventh year the Greening of Arkansas program awarded grants. Developed and managed by the Arkansas Flower and Garden Show board in 2006, the program is intended to support the development and care of community gardens, parks, and other public green spaces throughout Arkansas.
The recipients of the grant funding, which range in amounts from $700 to $2,500, were selected by a three-person committee.
This year’s recipients include:
- Southern Arkansas University Tech in East Camden, which will receive $2,500 to landscape an area SAUT’s campus to display a Rocket Monument.
- Seven Hills Garden in Fayetteville. The Seven Hills Homeless Shelter will receive $700 to create a small garden at the shelter.
- The Boone County Master Gardeners in Harrison, who will receive $1,200 to establish a pollinator garden for use in education and demonstrations.
- The Pulaski County Master Gardeners in Little Rock, who will receive $2,500 to plant a demonstration garden for horticultural education.
- The Pulaski Heights Elementary School Parent-Teacher Association in Little Rock, which will receive $1,500 to establish a small green space for students and public use.
- Audubon Arkansas in Little Rock, which will receive $1,100 to improve native plant demonstration gardens.
- The Paron Community Center in Paron, which will receive $1,000 to improve the landscaping around the center.
- The Jefferson County Clean and Beautiful Commission in Pine Bluff, which will receive $2,500 to enhance a community garden with fruit trees and rose bushes.
- Five Rivers Historic Preservation, Inc. in Pocahontas, which will receive $2,000 to create a green space near te Arts District in downtown Pocahontas.
The committee judges grant applications according to criteria designed to support the committee’s vision, while keeping the goal of geographic dispersion in mind, when possible.
In addition to the grant funding, thousands of dollars in proceeds from the Arkansas Flower and Garden Show also go toward funding students studying horticulture in Arkansas.
Krista Quinn, who began serving as Executive Director of the show in 2008, said the beautification grants help fulfil a key component of the show’s foundational purpose.
“The Greening of Arkansas grant program is an important part of the Arkansas Flower & Garden Show's mission,” Quinn said. “Many studies have shown that there are huge economic and social benefits when communities have attractive public areas and green spaces.
“Our grant program often gives communities the start-up funding they need to create civic plantings to beautify spaces their residents use on a daily basis,” she said. “This can promote community pride, increase the enjoyment of these spaces, and even attract new business and tourism in some areas.”
Quinn recently stepped down from her position with the Arkansas Flower and Garden Show, after accepting a position with the Arkansas Forestry Commission. In December, members of the show’s Board of Directors voted to hire Mary Beth Rogers as the new Executive Director. Rogers has served as the Executive Secretary of the Arkansas Turfgrass Association since 2009.
The 2018 Arkansas Flower and Garden Show will take place March 2-4 at the Arkansas State Fairgrounds. This year’s theme is “Imagine the Possibilities.” Tickets can be purchased online, or at the fairgrounds during the show. The price of admission includes free parking.
To learn more about the Greening of Arkansas grant program or the Arkansas Flower and Garden Show, visit https://argardenshow.org/.
About the Division of Agriculture
The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s mission is to strengthen agriculture, communities, and families by connecting trusted research to the adoption of best practices. Through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service, the Division of Agriculture conducts research and extension work within the nation’s historic land grant education system.
The Division of Agriculture is one of 20 entities within the University of Arkansas System. It has offices in all 75 counties in Arkansas and faculty on five system campuses.
The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs to all eligible persons without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.
# # #
Media Contact: Mary Hightower
Dir. of Communication Services
U of A System Division of Agriculture
Cooperative Extension Service