Victory Garden Breaks Ground at City Hall

Mayor James Sottile

Mayor James Sottile

More than 50 people attended this morning’s groundbreaking ceremony at Kingston City Hall of the installation of a “Three Sisters” Victory Garden on the west side of the building.

Rebecca Martin, chair of the Kingston Land Trust’s Garden Committee and founder of the Kingston Victory Garden Project, presided over the event, which included comments from Mayor James Sottile and an assistant attorney general for New York State. The Earth Day ceremony culminated with Sottile, Martin and several high school students, who are participating in the garden project, laying the final handfuls of topsoil into the eight-foot by eight-foot raised bed.

“Today, we celebrate an organic garden at one of our City’s most prominent municipal buildings,” Martin said. “It not only sets a positive tone for residents in the city, but it is one-of-a-kind, nationwide right now and has been cited by Roger Dorion, founder of the ‘Eat the View’ campaign that gathered over 100,000 signatures in support of the organic garden now being created at the White House.”

Sottile said the day was an opportunity to step back and understand the importance of balancing economic development while “paying close attention to what is important to the community and the Earth.” Sottile praised the efforts of Martin, volunteers and students who are working to improve the city with community gardens and other initiatives.

Rebecca Martin

Rebecca Martin

Specifically in regard to the students, Sottile said they are often overlooked and not recognized for their community efforts. “I’m extremely proud that you’re here, and doing this work” he said. “You are the future.”

The Victory Garden

The Victory Garden

A “Three Sisters” garden is a Native American companion garden of corn, beans and squash. These vegetables are what the Esopus Indians grew in the region, and sustained themselves on in the fall and winter months.

— Arthur Zaczkiewicz

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