Community Garden Launches in Arlington

Posted: 5/22/2014

Arlington Medical Center to Sponsor Community Garden

This spring a fresh garden will open its gates to the community of Arlington at the corner of Willow Avenue and Sixth Street. Arlington Medical Center will sponsor the Arlington Community Garden with the purpose of providing a sense of wellness and belonging to the public.

The community garden is open to the public. There is a $20 fee and application process for anyone interested in renting a plot. For safety reasons, the garden is open during daylight hours only. Gardeners are asked to keep their plot tended, and plan on attending various garden work nights and open houses throughout the season to socialize and assist with special projects.

Arlington Medical Center CNP Tonya Froehlich, Mike Jorenby, Rhonda Vagt and Jan Swenson make up the garden’s leadership team, working to ensure that everything in the garden runs smoothly.

In addition to the sponsorship from Arlington Medical Center, the garden has received a wide variety of other donations. Jorenby, along with Merle Walters, donated time and efforts into tilling the garden to prepare for the planting season. Wayne and Angie Negstad of H&R Block in Brookings and Watertown donated $250 toward summer water costs in the garden. Prairie Ag Partners donated spray used for initial weed control prior to the opening in order to prepare for planters.

“Community gardens grow more than vegetables, flowers or herbs. New relationships form, people get exercise, and it provides fresh local food for community members,” Froehlich said. Community gardens lend a location for those without suitable land to grow their own fresh food. Access to nature can lower stress and the garden can provide education regarding health and food preservation to youth and adults.

Gardeners have the opportunity to either request help from an experienced gardener, or provide guidance for the new gardeners. The garden will foster community spirit, offering a location to socialize and gather, and allowing people of different backgrounds and generations to share their traditions. 

For more information about the Arlington Community Garden, contact a member of the leadership team: Tonya Froehlich at (605) 695-1411, Mike Jorenby at (605) 203-0728, Rhonda Vagt at (605) 695-2170, or Jan Swenson at (605) 983-5277.

About Brookings Health System

Brookings Health System, located in Brookings, South Dakota, includes a 49-bed hospital, the 79-bed The Neighborhoods at Brookview nursing home, Brookhaven Estates senior living apartments, Yorkshire Eye Clinic, Arlington Medical Center and White Medical Clinic. It is a non-profit, city-owned facility that offers the community a full range of inpatient, outpatient, surgical and extended care services. The emergency room is staffed 24 hours a day and provides around the clock patient needs ranging from minor injuries to life threatening crises. For more information about the services offered at Brookings Health System, please call (605) 696-9000 or visit us on the Web at brookingshealth.org.