The Festival Beach Food Forest (FBFF) is a grassroots pilot project neighboring the Festival Beach Community Garden and RBJ Residential Center in East Austin. Since 2015 we have transformed 2/3rds of an acre of City Park Land into an edible forest garden where visitors can openly forage and enjoy fresh food on the shores of Lady Bird Lake. Fruits, nuts, vegetables and herbs now flourish in this experimental pilot project to reclaim the public commons. Covid-19 has brought into focus how important it is to have a healthy immune system. By creating spaces that give all people access to healthy food and medicinal plants as well as resources to grow their own gardens we effort to ensure the generational health and well being of our communities as well as our natural systems.
In April of 2020 the FBFF received a grant to expand our current 2/3rds acre to the full 4+/- acre site by planting additional canopy and understory trees and edible landscaping. We have outlined a full year of programming, community outreach, advisory coalition building as well as educational and celebratory events that will help inform an equitable and inclusive “Urban Food Forest Planning Process” that is the final deliverable of our grant proposal.
The Rebekah Baines Johnson Senior and Disabled Center next door to the FBFF is also going through a major campus expansion and we aim to influence a healthy and equitable outcome for that rare mixed-income development; nurture our seniors and neighbors; and tell the story of the “old growth trees” of the diverse East Austin community, past and present, that give this area its rich soil and unique soul.
We will be hosting many listening sessions for the community to come and understand more. Please reach out if you are interested in learning more, want to give your thoughts about this expansion and/or want to participate as a Community Advisor.
Here are some ways to participate:
If you would like to join a listening session, get a tour of the Food Forest and/or become a Community Advisor please join us from 9am-Noon First Saturdays and Second Saturdays. Because we are taking your health and safety seriously during COVID-19 please register to attend here so that we can manage attendance appropriately.
If you would like to know more and/or become a Community Advisor please give us your thoughts here
If you would like to become part of the volunteer team for outreach and design please join us for First and Second Saturdays and reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org
PAID POSITION AVAILABLE:
Project Manager Assistant: Find out more here.
Hope to see you soon as we continue Rooting and Blooming with our vibrant community!