by Marilyn Grubbs
Hart’s Mill joined the crowds at this year’s Festival for the Eno, on July 4th and 7th at Durham’s West Point on the Eno. A number of our members helped out at a Hart’s Mill booth, greeting a steady stream of passersby and leading our “Seed Bomb” activity for children. Kids took balls of clay from our land and packed them with milkweed seeds, many of which also came from our land. Then, we invited the children to take them home and plant them in their yards. We explained the important connection between milkweed plants and monarch butterflies. (Actually, most of the children already knew about this connection. Do you? If not, check out www.MonarchWatch.org!) Hopefully, we helped to provide a few more habitats for those monarchs at the homes of the children who visited our booth.
We greeted adult festival-goers with information about Hart’s Mill’s current activities and future plans. This proved to be a perfect place to find like-minded folks who were enthusiastic to learn about us, and perhaps to join us in the future. We also had some of Margret Mueller’s gorgeous note cards for sale. In addition, we were able to network with people from other nonprofit organizations such as animal rescue groups, other intentional communities, and (my personal favorite) a nonprofit dedicated to promoting electric vehicles. To top it off, there was plenty of live music and wonderful food.
Hart’s Millers who braved the heat on July 4th included Amy Halberstadt, Anthony Weston, Bailey, Gaius, and Virginia. On the blessedly cool and overcast July 7th, Amy and Anthony returned along with Marilyn, Richard, Victoria, and Virginia. Amy procured the booth for us, and she and Anthony did the heavy lifting (literally!) of setting up the canopy, tables, seed bomb supplies, and so forth beforehand and taking them down afterwards.
Thanks to everyone who helped! The consensus was that this sort of festival is a fun and productive way to get the word out about Hart’s Mill. Since the season of festivals is in full swing, if you know of one that you think we should attend, let us know!