It’s time for summer salsa
Gardengate is hosting its eighth annual Summer Salsa Challenge on Thursday, Aug. 18, at its Brocklehurst location — and the public is invited to take part.
The event, which will take place between 12:30 p.m. and 3 p.m., will allow Kamloops residents to drop by and sample salsas from 12 community teams and cast their vote for the People’s Choice and Team Spirit awards.
In addition to the tasty treats, there will also be music from local talent, beginner yoga classes, an organic produce market and garden tours.
Gardengate was formed in 1999 to address two issues: Food security and opportunities for people with mental-health issues.
It is managed by Open Door Group in co-operation with the Kamloops Food Policy Council.
With support from local businesses, volunteers and the Interior Health Authority, the Gardengate site was established in Brocklehurst and programming began in 2001.
Its mission is “growing food and futures through diverse and supportive programs for persons with disabilities while contributing to the health and wellness of our community.”
In order to fulfil its mission of contributing to the health of the community, Gardengate has donated more than 170,000 pounds of organic produce to local charities in the past 12 years.
Today, the 2.8-acre site features rows of organic produce, a greenhouse, an orchard, a classroom and a kitchen, with a cold storage in the works.
Each morning, people living with mental-health issues work alongside staff and community volunteers to tend to the garden’s needs. Through these activities, participants gain confidence and build their vocational skills.
In 2008, the Accessible Garden was opened, providing opportunities for people with mobility issues to plant and tend to their own gardens.
Cooking classes, horticulture workshops, field trips, organic-farming practices and produce and plant sales are other components to Gardengate’s program.
Gardengate is located at 915 Southill St, beside the Overlander Extended Care Hospital.