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The Free Produce Stand Returns

In the summer of 2022, The Waynedale News sparked the idea of the “Take Some, Leave Some” produce stand, and it took off like wildfire! The produce table has returned for the summer of 2023 and is already seeing traffic of people giving and receiving produce. This spring, the table was placed out earlier than in the past in order to accommodate growers who had extra plants to share. This got the ball rolling sooner and helped people who might not be able to afford plants and seeds to plant a garden for themselves and their families.

“It was so awesome watching people come and go last year as they dropped off or picked up produce from the table, and then again this spring” shared Alex Cornwell, Publisher of The Waynedale News. Last year, there were around 30 people a day who regularly came to leave produce on the table and almost none of it was wasted, as it was scooped up by many other lucky people.

“Last year, we noticed a lot of people on social media posting about having extra produce from their gardens and needing to find people to help them consume it,” said Cornwell. “So, we introduced the ‘Take Some, Leave Some’ stand. It did so well, and helped so many people, that we wanted to continue the idea this season. We are encouraging gardeners who have overflow or extra produce that they can’t use to drop by and add it to the table. Similarly, we invite anyone who could benefit from fresh produce to stop by and help themselves to what has been given.”

Many may not be aware, but in Indiana 730,480 people face food insecurity concerns and 204,290 of them are children. This is a large reason why The Waynedale News decided to implement the “Take Some Leave Some” produce stand. At times, cost prohibits residents in our community from being able to afford fresh and healthy produce from the grocery store, and this is a wonderful opportunity to provide it for free instead of it going to waste.

In the past couple of years, Forward Indiana began an initiative that installed food pantries in the community with the intention that they would be used and filled by the community with the motto “give what you can and take what you need.” Since fresh produce cannot be placed in these pantries due to bugs and health, the “Take Some, Leave Some” stand at the Waynedale News office is the perfect extension of the local pantries during the season of abundant produce. In the local area, residents can find the Forward Indiana food pantries in the following locations (please just remember to not place fresh/perishable goods in these locations): Hair Affair (6200 Bluffton Rd.), St. Joe Catholic Church (2213 Brooklyn Ave.), Packard Community Garden (347 W. Packard Ave.), Fancy and Staple (1111 Broadway), Plymouth Church (501 W Berry St.), Wayne Township (320 E. Superior St.), Poplar Village (2107 Broadway), Boys and Girls Club (2609 Fairfield Ave.), Banh Mi Pho (1925 Fairfield Ave.), Muse on Main (1332 W. Main St.).

The “Take Some, Leave Some” produce table is open to anyone who would like to donate as well as anyone who would like to come to take produce to enjoy. There is no income or social standing prerequisite to take produce, all are welcome to take, trade, or leave produce. The stand is open 24/7, but please follow the instruction sheet when you arrive.

As a free newspaper, The Waynedale News is an organization that believes there should be no income barrier to news, entertainment, or access to knowledge about community resources for those who may need it. Similarly, it is proud to help facilitate access to delicious, nutritious, local produce that has been grown and given with care.

Regular updates about the stand will be shared on The Waynedale News Facebook page. Like and follow facebook.com/Waynedalenews for more information.

The Waynedale News Staff
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Megan Ryan

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