Community Gardens of Tucson to celebrate 25 years, 25 gardens with event at JCC

(Community Gardens of Tucson Facebook page)

Community Gardens of Tucson, a nonprofit started in 1990 by author George Brookbank, will host a fundraising event in his honor at the Tucson Jewish Community Center, the site of its 25th garden, on Sunday, Oct. 25.  The celebration will kick off in the Tucson J’s sculpture garden at 12:30 p.m. with a lunch buffet, education stations, live music with Harvey on Broadway and the Every Man Band, and a silent auction, followed by a program honoring Brookbank, CGT board chair emeritus. In addition to creating a network of gardens across the city, Brookbank is a former University of Arizona Agent for Urban Horticulture and popular gardening author.

CGT creates and oversees shared gardens on public and private sites and provides support for gardeners of all ages, abilities and backgrounds.

“Bringing people together in their own neighborhoods creates a supportive bond. And sharing extra produce along with recipes increases nutritional awareness for both young and old. This should be a community-wide celebration because we still hear way too often that we are the best kept secret in Tucson,” says Darlene Schacht, CGT co-founder.

Approximately 25 percent of CGT gardeners receive scholarship funding to cover gardening-related expenses. Among these gardeners are over 60 refugees. The Co-op Gardener Program gives the opportunity to do work exchange for plot fees. A third of CGT’s gardens are on school properties; CGT works with schools to bring experiential learning, physical activity, environmental awareness and healthy food acquisition to youth.

CGT partners with multiple community organizations and businesses to support these efforts. Proceeds of The Big 25th event will continue the work of improving food systems and sources and enhancing neighborhoods throughout the greater Tucson community.

To purchase tickets for The Big 25th Celebration ($25/ticket includes lunch), visit communitygardensoftucson.org or call 520-795-8823.