100 Best Communities for Young People Celebration: “Passport through the Promises”

January 31st, 2012

Somerville is celebrating its fourth year of being one of the 100 Best Communities for Young People in the United States by the America’s Promise Alliance.

Join Groundwork Somerville at the community celebration on Saturday, February 25th from 1:00-3:00 PM in the Somerville High School Atrium!  At this celebration there will be family friendly indoor games, performances by youth singers, dancers and other entertainers.  Youth and families are invited to celebrate the promises the City of Somerville makes to nurture the aspirations of all of our young people.

Tapping Event a Success!

January 30th, 2012

Groundwork Somerville, with the help of 30 adults and at least 25 youth, successfully hung 20 buckets on 10 Sugar Maple trees this past Thursday.   Despite temperatures just barely below freezing the night before, sap ran out of the holes as soon as they were drilled.  Participants got to help with the tapping of the trees, taste the fresh sap, and enjoy some outdoor time on the sloping grassy slope between Tuft’s academic quad and the intersection of Boston and College Aves.

We measured the trees’ circumferences to determine the right number of buckets to hang, placed holes well away from past year’s scars, hammered in the spiles (taps), and hung buckets on hooks.  The final step, putting the tops on the buckets, will prevent bark, leaves, or rain from falling into the buckets as they collect sap.  Maple sap runs when temperatures go below freezing at night and rise above freezing during the day.  Once trees start to bud, the flavor of the sap will become more bitter, and we will pull out the spiles and clean our equiptment.  The tree then heals itself quickly.  This year’s season is much earlier than usual, so we are not sure how long the sap will run.

All sap is stored in frozen and refrigerated storage until the Boil Down Festival on March 3rd at the Somerville Community Growing Center.  Public are then invited back out to see the sap boil down into pure maple syrup!  Keep an eye on Groundwork Somerville’s website, online calendar, facebook page, or twitter feed to get updates and news about the Somerville Maple Syrup Project.  Maple tapping would not be possible without the support of Tufts Buildings and Grounds – thanks!

Photographs taken by Groundwork Somerville Staff on 1/26/2012 can be viewed on this Picasa Album.

Best Shoveled Block Award

January 27th, 2012

Does your neighborhood have the best shoveled block this winter? Nominate your neighbors by emailing edward.g.davis@usps.gov. See details below!

Maple Syrupy Kids Workshops

January 26th, 2012

Come join Groundwork Somerville at the Somerville Public Library Saturdays in February from 11am to 12pm.  This free workshop series will be run by Groundwork Somerville Maple Educators and is open to the public!  Check out the Workshop Flier here.

February 25: Getting Sappy: How many gallons of sap makes one gallon of syrup?  What does sap taste, smell, feel, and look like? Can we use poetry to describe these sensations?

Recommended for ages 6-9.  Limited to 15 youth on a first come, first served basis.  This program is coordinated through the Children’s Department and funded by Friends of the Somerville Public Library.

Thank you to the Children’s Department and the Friends of the Somerville Public Library for supporting this programming.  For information about The Maple Syrup Boil Down, the education series, or syrup production contact:

Tai Dinnan ~ tai@groundworksomerville.org ~ 617-628-9988 office phone

Maple Syrupy Kids Workshops

January 26th, 2012

Come join Groundwork Somerville at the Somerville Public Library Saturdays in February from 11am to 12pm.  This free workshop series will be run by Groundwork Somerville Maple Educators and is open to the public! Check out the Workshop Flier here.

February 18: Maple-y history and tools: How did people a long time ago figure how to make maple syrup?  How have tools changed over the years? Can we practice using the tools?  

Recommended for ages 6-9.  Limited to 15 youth on a first come, first served basis.  This program is coordinated through the Children’s Department and funded by Friends of the Somerville Public Library.

Thank you to the Children’s Department and the Friends of the Somerville Public Library for supporting this programming.  For information about The Maple Syrup Boil Down, the education series, or syrup production contact:

Tai Dinnan ~ tai@groundworksomerville.org ~ 617-628-9988 office phone

Maple Syrupy Kids Workshops

January 26th, 2012

Come join Groundwork Somerville at the Somerville Public Library Saturdays in February from 11am to 12pm.  This free workshop series will be run by Groundwork Somerville Maple Educators and is open to the public! Check out the Workshop Flier here.

February 11:  Tree trunks have layers?! What does each tree trunk layer do for the tree?  How do trees benefit our neighborhoods?  Does tapping for syrup hurt Somerville Maple Trees?

Recommended for ages 6-9.  Limited to 15 youth on a first come, first served basis.  This program is coordinated through the Children’s Department and funded by Friends of the Somerville Public Library.

Thank you to the Children’s Department and the Friends of the Somerville Public Library for supporting this programming.  For information about The Maple Syrup Boil Down, the education series, or syrup production contact:

Tai Dinnan ~ tai@groundworksomerville.org ~ 617-628-9988 office phone

Maple Syrupy Kids Workshops

January 26th, 2012

Come join Groundwork Somerville at the Somerville Public Library Saturdays in February from 11am to 12pm.  This free workshop series will be run by Groundwork Somerville Maple Educators and is open to the public! Check out the Workshop Flier here.

February 4:  Investigating trees through the seasons. What is sap?  Why does it flow in the spring? Making hypotheses: when will sap flow and what might make it stop?

Recommended for ages 6-9.  Limited to 15 youth on a first come, first served basis.  This program is coordinated through the Children’s Department and funded by Friends of the Somerville Public Library.

Thank you to the Children’s Department and the Friends of the Somerville Public Library for supporting this programming.  For information about The Maple Syrup Boil Down, the education series, or syrup production contact:

Tai Dinnan ~ tai@groundworksomerville.org ~ 617-628-9988 office phone

The Maple Syrup Project @ Winter Farmer’s Market

January 24th, 2012

Come join Groundwork Somerville at the Winter Farmer’s Market at the Armory!  We will have information about our annual Maple Syrup Project including information about tapping Maple trees,  collecting sap, boiling it down to make maple syrup, and celebrating the Somerville community.   We will be spreading the word about the Maple Syrup Boil Down Festival on March 3rd and selling T-shirts to support the Project.

Maple Tree Tapping Event 1/26

January 22nd, 2012

Follow tapping news on Twitter using #mmmsyrup hashtag! Our handle on twitter is @gwsomerville

Supporters or the Somerville Maple Syrup will be tapping sugar maple trees on the Tufts Campus this Thursday January 26th at 3pm. Families, neighbors, students, and anyone interested in participating in this fun outdoor event should gather at the bottom of memorial steps across from Anderson Hall, 200 College Avenue. At 3pm, we’ll climb the steps and begin to tap the trees growing on the sloped lawn to the right of the steps behind Paige Hall and the Lincoln Filene Center. Attendees are encouraged to dress appropriately to be outside for an hour.

The Somerville Maple Syrup Project is coordinated by Groundwork Somerville in partnership with the Friends of the Community Growing Center, Somerville Public Schools and Tufts University. In late January, maple trees in Somerville are tapped and the collected sap is stored for a 2-day public boil-down event in March at the Community Growing Center. Sap starts flowing when temperatures drop below freezing at night, and rise above freezing during the day.

In addition to daily sap collection, Groundwork Somerville staff and community volunteers teach a 4- week arts and science curriculum to 2nd graders in all of Somerville’s public schools and at the Somerville Public Library. High school students working in the metal shop provide annual maintenance on the wood stove and evaporator pan they made in 2005. The syrup produced is given as thank you gifts to key partners, and/or sold in small maple leaf jars at the Groundwork Somerville booth at the Union Square Farmer’s Market. To learn more about the project, visit www.groundworksomerville.org and select the Somerville Maple Syrup Project page.


 


New Harris Park Public Meeting

January 19th, 2012

Calling all East Somerville residents!  Join Groundwork Somerville and the City of Somerville at the second public meeting for the New Harris Park on Wednesday, January 25, 2012 at 7pm at the Senior Center on the corner of Cross St. and Broadway. We will discuss preliminary designs with the landscape architects and we need your feedback.

Groundwork has been working hard to make sure this meeting is accessible to all city residents, including youth and immigrant families that live in East Somerville.   Interpretation will be available in Spanish, Portuguese, and Haitian Creole.  Healthy food will be provided by Shape Up Somerville starting at 6:30pm at the Senior Center. Any questions about the meeting can be addressed to Luisa Oliveira, loliveira@somervillema.gov, 617-625-6600.