Autumn in the Dreamkeeper Garden is an amazing time, the kale heads are poking out of the ground, the squash flowers paint yellow splashes across the garden, and the goats, as always, frolic and jump in their enclosed goat garden. Most importantly, we have a grand sweet potato harvest and enjoy the treasures of pulling out the largest, smallest, weirdest and longest golden orange sweet potatoes from all four sweet potato beds. This year, the third grade class, with their practiced trowel-holding hands, got to dig into the sweet potato beds and collected over 200 pounds of bounty! With all of these summer-grown treats, the LHA Dreamkeeper team started planning a gigantic harvest party to celebrate all of our locally grown autumn produce, and the success of the scholars hard work throughout this year.
For three weeks we planned and inquired as to what should go into the harvest party festival, and among many different answers from students, such as hot-wings and ice cream, some salads, pies, and sweet potato casserole also make their way into the desired menu. We also asked students if they could invite anyone to the party, who would they like to invite - and mothers, fathers, teachers and siblings were all on the invite list. Michael Jackson's Spirit was also invited so he could "teach some moves" to a first grade scholar. We prepped and planned for our harvest party all month long, and all four garden teachers put in some extra kitchen time at home to make enough food for 500 K-4 elementary scholars!
40 pounds of sweet potato casserole, 20 pecan pies, and 20 pumpkin pies later…we were ready to go! The students entered the garden atrium area where three tables with ESY tablecloths and bouquets were set-up for them, and a buffet with all kinds of harvest party feasts to enjoy. On their plates were apples, celery and garden grown peanut-butter, popcorn, sweet potato casserole and pecan or pumpkin pie with a cup of hot cider to wash it all down. Before we ate, the students shared with each other what they were thankful for, one third-grader in particular said they were thankful for the food and the people that grew up, and after Ms. Zuri prompted who made the food they all realized it was their hard work and garden skills that brought lots of these delicious treats to the table!
Our Autumn Harvest Party was a great success and we can't wait for next year!