Imagine Grinnell is inviting interested community members to continue the legacy of Imagine Grinnell by joining the board or volunteering. The mission of Imagine Grinnell is to turn imagination into action to create a more vibrant, sustainable and healthy Grinnell. Imagine Grinnell began in 1985 with the dreams of a few community members as they envisioned life in the year 2000. The non-profit was originally named Grinnell 2000 and in 2001, the board changed the name to Imagine Grinnell. Board co-president, Keira Wilson, says, “it’s likely you’ve seen one of the many Imagine Grinnell projects encompassed in our tagline, Green, Playing, Growing. Some of our first projects were the Farmer’s Market, a volunteer-run recycling facility, tree planting with Trees Forever, and the current solar energy initiative. These programs are still making an impact today.”
Imagine Grinnell supports current community collaborations with the Giving Gardens. Volunteers from Imagine Grinnell help plant, weed, harvest and maintain Marvin Garden which is located on Marvin Avenue, east of Arbor Lake. Last year the Giving Gardens donated almost 1000 pounds of fresh vegetables, fruit, and herbs to MICA and other community outreach initiatives. “We are proud to support this community effort that provides free, fresh, local produce to residents,” says Tim Ellsworth, board co-president. One of the most recent collaborations for Imagine Grinnell is working with AmeriCorps to combat food insecurity by researching the various public food sources in Grinnell. The Grinnell Food Resource Guide is posted around town and will soon be on the Imagine Grinnell website, www.imaginegrinnell.org, as a resource for finding access to food.
In the early 2000’s Imagine Grinnell helped with planning and fundraising for the Grinnell Area Recreation Trail, a valued free and accessible resource used every day by walkers, runners, cyclists, and motorized wheelchairs. This past September, a state-of-the-art permanent Skate/BMX park opened at Bailey Park. This was a wonderful collaboration between Imagine Grinnell, the city of Grinnell, Grinnell College, active youth, and many donations from citizens and small businesses.
The Prairie Burn 100 debuted last year as a fun gravel bicycle ride that showcased the newly renovated Central Park. Drawing 161 riders from 8 states, the day was filled with bike riding, fun activities, music and food. Ellsworth, part of this year’s planning team, says “I’m excited for more riders and more music and food options as we focus on community building while enjoying our beautiful countryside.” This year’s ride is scheduled for June 6th. Visit the Prairie Burn 100 website at www.prairieburn100.com to learn more and register for this year’s ride.
If you are interested in the sustainability of Grinnell, the environment, or have a passion for healthy living, then consider volunteering for Imagine Grinnell. Ellsworth encourages community members with different talents, fresh ideas and energy who value an active, greener lifestyle in the community to learn more about Imagine Grinnell. Current board members include, Wilson, Ellsworth, Scott Bauman, Richard Berman, Jon Duke, Kamal Hammouda, Avery Lindley, Chad Nath, Holly Petlon, Vanessa Preast, and Laurel Tuggle-Lacina. To learn more, visit the Imagine Grinnell website at www.imaginegrinnell.org and fill out the “Join Us” page, or send a message to Imagine Grinnell on Facebook at Imagine Grinnell Foundation.
Make a difference with Imagine Grinnell!