Written June 9, 2008 (drafted for the Austin Chronicle before I even had a website or blog)
Eat Your Lawn! Last week, a \”Back-of-the-Napkin” Business Plan submitted by a team of Austinites won recognition in a contest at the BALLE (Business Alliance for Local Living Economies) Conference in Boston. The team, headed by Austin eco-activist Brandi Clark, was recognized for \”Turf to Table: Eat Your Lawn.\” The 5-minute YouTube video planned would inspire people to convert their lawns to gardens, to produce more locally-grown food, providing how-to tips and resources. The napkin-sketch business plan, inspired by the Fritz Haeg Edible Estates exhibit at Austin’s Jones Art Center, has evolved into a broader proposal for a green-collar job program, native and edible-landscape plant distribution, and a city-wide community-supported agriculture program. Collaborators include Edible Austin, the Sustainable Food Center, Austin Green Art\’s \”Grow Austin Weird\” project, and other food- and gardening-oriented programs. The other team members are Marla Camp, publisher of Edible Austin, green consultant Katie Sternberg, and Grace Wicks, a Philadelphia-based installer of edible landscapes. They are seeking creative talent and funders for the video and job development program, as well as labor, skills, and locations for gardening installations. Contact: email@example.com.