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Village Gardens Pie Hard Judges

July 29, 2015

622-LOGOVillage Gardens is very proud to be the non-profit partner for Willamette Week’s Pie Hard event, an artisan pizza and fruit pie showdown at Ecliptic Brewing Co. (825 N Cook St.) on Tuesday, August 4 from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. Tickets are on sale here and $2 from each purchase goes directly to Village Gardens.

The Pie Hard event will also feature two Village Gardens community members on the judge panel: Roman, Food Works Crew Leader and Vickie, Community Leader.

Here is a bit about both of them:


Vickie tending the children activity booth at the Village Gardens farmers market.

Since moving to New Columbia two years ago, Vickie has been an active and engaged community leader.  A mother of five and a grandmother of four, she has been engaged in gardening in Portsmouth Community Garden for the past year and a half and is assisting in the role of a kitchen co-leader in the formulation of the first New Columbia/Tamarack Apartments community kitchen. The kitchen will not only create social connectedness, but will also impart healthy recipes and training in the areas of canning, preserving and baking. Vickie also has been an active volunteer for the past two years with Village Gardens/Portland Fruit Tree Project’s Fruits of Diversity Orchard, learning  the art of fruit tree and vine care.

In addition to all of her volunteerism (and I have only barely scraped the surface of just how much she gives of herself), she additionally is in her final year at Portland State University in pursuit of a Bachelors Degree in Public Health.  Having recently completed Multnomah County’s Community Health Worker Program, Vickie’s plan is to create positive inroads in the arena of health care rights in the queer community.

Roman at the Village Gardens Third Annual Spring Fundraiser.

Roman is a Crew Leader for Food Works, Village Gardens youth run farm and business. He has been a crew member for the last year and now holds the position of summer program crew leader.

Here is Roman in his words sharing his thoughts about Food Works: “What I enjoy at food works is coming to work and spending time with people I want to hang out with!Being untied as a crew. Seeing everyone’s point of view of the program and of life. Hearing others goals and achieving their dreams. Also seeing everyone grow as their own person and as a crew.”

“Working as a team is very important at Food works because we need everyone in the crew to be able to be successful. It sound crazy but it does. Working as a team can be hard, but we’ll live. It’s hard sharing the spotlight but it’s better to share it with everyone. It’s not about what you want, it’s about you and the crew and you decision to come to consensus.  At the farm you need everyone to put in effort because if someone doesn’t the crew can fall behind.”

Roman is a sophomore at Roosevelt High School and wants to become a reality T.V star.

Village Gardens is Hiring a Program Director

July 25, 2015
Village_Market_Finals-111Janus Youth Programs seeks an effective leader with solid management skills who is passionate about improving food security and food justice in underserved communities! This position is responsible for the continued success and viability of Village Gardens Community Food Projects. As such, it requires vision, grit, exemplary time management skills, sophisticated community building skills, strong writing skills and an easy way with people. A sense of humor will also prove invaluable! We anticipate that the position will begin in early September.
Salary is $4166 per month. Janus offers an excellent benefits program including medical,
dental, life & long-term disability insurance; EAP; 401(k) and paid time off (varied eligibility waiting periods apply). Voluntary optional coverages are also available.
Please submit cover letter and resume to Melissa Allen, Janus Youth Programs, Inc., 707 NE Couch, Portland, OR 97232 or email to her at
Your cover letter (not to exceed twopages) must highlight experience and training related to no less than three of the following areas: 1) Work related to food security and food justice issues; 2) Fundraising and grant writing; 3) Community building; 4) Strategic planning; 5) Program management.
Click here for full position
Program Director 07-2015

Do you love Pies?

July 17, 2015

Village622-LOGO Gardens is very proud to be the non-profit partner for Willamette Week’s Pie Hard event, an artisan pizza and fruit pie showdown at Ecliptic Brewing Co. (825 N Cook St.) on Tuesday, August 4 from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. Tickets are now on sale HERE and $2 from each purchase goes directly to Village Gardens.

Guests will enjoy pies by locally acclaimed chefs from Ken’s Artisan Pizza, Fire & Stone, PREAM, Tastebud Farms, Ash Woodfired, Ecliptic Brewing, Petunia’s Pies and Pastries, Random Order Coffeehouse, and Pacific Pie Co. Samples of each pie, ice cream by Ruby Jewel and live music by Rio Grands are included in the $22 ticket. The event is open to all ages and guests 21 and over may purchase beer from Ecliptic Brewing Co. at happy hour prices.

Pizza chefs will vie for People’s and Judge’s Choice Awards as they create pies in wood fired ovens on site with ingredients provided by Provvista Specialty Foods. Fruit Pie awards will also be given, as guests will select their favorite pie made with produce from New Seasons Market. Guest judges include Mike Golub of the Portland Timbers, Kurt Huffman or Chefstable Group, Mike Thelin of Feast Portland, David Barbur of Pickelopolis, among others, as well as 2 Village Gardens Community Leaders.

If you are looking for more information about Pie Hard, you can contact Steph Barnhart, events and marketing manager, at 503-­‐445-­‐2764 or

Village Gardens will be present at the event with an information and merchandise booth. We hope to see you on August 4th for this promising pizza and pie showdown!

The Village Gardens Team


Transitions at Village Gardens

July 14, 2015

Dear Village Gardens Community,

After nearly 10 years with this amazing program, I have decided to transition out of my role as Program Director of Village Gardens. I have been deeply transformed by the Village Gardens community, and have learned a great deal about what it can mean to partner with people, play my part, follow the lead of others, take the lead when needed, and most importantly to trust in the wisdom of the community to know what it needs.  After a phenomenal decade, it is now time for me to focus energy on my own family and health, and I look forward to my next chapter with more time for my two year old.AandO

Over my time at Village Gardens, I have had the opportunity to work alongside inspiring teenagers as they grew a working certified organic farm business from a small 700 square foot garden.  I have had the chance to see a community come together to open and support the Village Market, start a farmers market, launch new micro-enterprises, expand community gardens and orchards, lead community health promotion, and develop numerous community partnerships.  I have been able to work with an incredible staff made up of some of the most dedicated and generous people that I know. I have been honored to work with the community volunteers of Village Gardens who exceed all expectations with their vision, commitment, and generosity in service to improving their community for their neighbors and families. Together we have worked to create a bit more justice in the world – from healthy food access, to more jobs for teens, to community self-determination and collective voice.

I am forever grateful, and forever changed by this work, and I look forward to seeing the next chapter of the program unfold. I am confident in its future and make this transition believing strongly in its road ahead.  My last day as the director will be July 31st, though I will be available to support the transition period as needed over the next few months, and hope to stay connected to the program long-term as a committed volunteer and supporter. Delphine Criscenzo, who has been our Development Assistant this past year, will be stepping in as Interim Program Director while a full search for a new Program Director is conducted.  She can be reached at and 503-927-0820.  We anticipate that the Program Director position will be posted shortly, and ask for your assistance in sharing the posting widely.

Thank you for your continued support of Village Gardens during this time of transition, and for all you have done to support the work thus far.  It is only because of the strength of your investment that Village Gardens continues to grow.

With a spirit of hope,

Amber Baker

Map to the Farmers Market

June 11, 2015
Village Gardens Farmers Market
June 18 – September 24
3pm – 7 pm
Vendor Application — Music — Vendors
Childrens Activities — Face Painting
Community Booth
Join our Volunteer Task Force and help determine the future of our farmers market
Farmers Market Map

Farmers Market Map

Village Gardens’ Farmers Market  is excited to be returning to New Columbia for our third season! Located outside of Village Market (4632 N. Trenton), the Farmers Market will provide local, seasonal and cultural vegetables grown by Village Gardens Market Gardeners and certified organic produce from Food Works Farm representing the culturally diverse neighborhoods of New Columbia and Portsmouth. The Village Gardens Market Gardeners hailing from several African countries will have a wide variety of  unique and cultural vegetables, such as: Amaranth leaf, squash leaf, bean leaf, African eggplant, chili pepper, tomatillos and squash blossoms to name a few. Please join us Thursday evenings for a fun and festive event, shop for produce, perfumes, and incense.  Enjoy hot food from our soul food vendors, tamales and with aqua fresca, and churros for dessert! This is sure to be a great community event, and a great way to support the neighborhood growers and  producers of these amazing products!


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