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School garden contest open


Entries are being accepted for the annual Arkansas Grown School Garden of the Year Contest, sponsored by the Arkansas Department of Agriculture and the Farm Credit Associations of Arkansas. Applicants may be any school, early childhood education facility, or alternative learning environment that had a school garden during the 2023-2024 school year or is planning to start a garden in the 2024-2025 school year.
“School gardens are valuable educational tools that help students develop healthy eating habits, participate in hands-on activities, and learn about Arkansas agriculture,” said Arkansas Secretary of Agriculture Wes Ward. “We are grateful for the generosity of Farm Credit and their continued support of this program.”
Entries for the contest will be accepted through June 14, 2024, and the application can be found at cognitoforms.com/ArkansasAgriculture1/ArkansasGrownSchool GardenOfTheYearContest2024. Winners will be announced in the fall of 2024.
“As a farmer-owned cooperative, we are excited to continue our support of teachers and projects that engage Arkansas students in food production and agricultural sustainability. Through these partnerships, we can ensure that the valuable role of Arkansas agriculture remains top-of-mind for the next generation,” said Farm Credit of Western Arkansas President and CEO, Brandon Haberer, on behalf of the Farm Credit Associations of Arkansas.
Applicants are eligible to apply for the following categories:
Best Start-Up School Garden Proposal - $500 Award

Best Education-Based School Garden - $500 Award
Best Harvest Partnership School Garden - $500 Award
Best Community Collaboration School Garden - $500 Award
Best Overall School Garden - $1,000 Award
Champion of School Garden Sustainability - $1,000 Award
More information about the Arkansas Grown School Garden of the Year Contest can be found at agriculture.arkansas.gov. or by contacting jessica.chapman@agriculture.arkansas.gov.