When you show up at Cathy’s place, it feels as if you have stepped into an alternate universe. Within a few minutes drive of downtown Everett’s urban center, lies a private residence with an abundant apple orchard overlooking the Puget Sound. A small group of Project Harvest volunteers was out that day to pick apples for the food bank. Upon arrival, they were met with an unforgettable view of Port Gardner Bay, and then by the plethora of apples to be harvested.
These trees were loaded.
Everyone excitedly got to work and in hardly any time, they had completely loaded an SUV with apples headed straight to Volunteers of America for distribution.
Despite filling an SUV, there were still many apples left and Cathy was determined to see them go where they would be useful. Another volunteer loaded 200 lbs into his car, which were taken to the Lake Stevens Visitor Center to be used during their Apple Cider Days. This is a free apple cider pressing event that is growing in popularity every year where hundreds of individuals connect to the traditional practice of cider pressing, and learn about Lawns to Lettuce and Project Harvest.
Over the next few weeks, Cathy continued to make trips to the food bank and Project Harvest volunteers took another stab at harvesting the trees that had just ripened. Overall, there were 1700 lbs of apples delivered straight into the hands of the food insecure. In addition, 450 lbs were donated to teaching events in various communities.
With one property, a little bit of sweat and a whole lot of fun, many lives were touched. We thank Cathy and all of the Project Harvest donors and volunteers. You demonstrate that community really can be built around local food and urban agriculture.