The five farm stand fellows hosted a Youth Day on November 10, 2018, at the Ethiopian Community of Seattle!

The idea began several weeks before when we gathered in a semi-circle to figure out what event we could pull together. After a few suggestions, we finally decided to host a youth day for two main reasons. One reason is that we hadn’t seen a lot of young people come to check out the farm stand during the summer. The second was to provide a place for youth to come and hang out. How many places in Rainier Beach do you know where young people can just go and enjoy themselves?

The day started out with setting up the stations, which included art, cookie decorating, karaoke and taste testing.  Of course, music played all throughout the event, along with random dancing as usual. Around 11, the kids started to show up. Their faces lit up with excitement when they learned they could decorate cookies. Strawberry frosting was the favorite even though vanilla and chocolate were on hand. Of course, cookies aren’t complete without sprinkles, which the kids used liberally.

Teens were there as well to enjoy participating in the karaoke and cookie decorating stations.  Everyone enjoyed the art station. Abstract paintings, a painting of a Viking, and many others will be used to decorate the RBAC office. Some little kids playing a game of “Guess the Fruit,” in which they were blindfolded and asked to guess which fruit was held up. And we had some candy as prizes and some treats. Board games included checkers, Uno, and chess. Some of the kids got creative and took a balloon off the wall to play balloon toss.  This event was a great place to come to hang out and make some new friends.

The event closed with everyone forming a circle. We discussed the importance of having a farm stand and how to attract more youth to the farm stand next year. Everyone believes having access to fresh local produce is important. Besides Safeway, most parents seemed to go to Costco for grocery shopping.

The farm stand this past summer had provided a way for people to get local produce and now the farm stand fellows have provided a fun, safe space for youth.