FFI Bits – April 20

After nine years of cooking with Postville high school kids, the last FEEST event was held in March. They made pizza with cauliflower, zucchini, and whole wheat crust. Thanks to the FEEST interns Emma Heins and Litci Marroquin and advisor Cici Mueller for their support of the project.

ACTIVE LIVING – Ashley Christensen & April Bril

Jes Wegner, RN and Gundersen Palmer Community Health Coordinator based in West Union, was recently honored as one of the recipients of the Iowa Department of Public Health Bureau of Nutrition and Physical Activity’s 2018 awards recognizing leaders in nutrition and physical activity.  Jes was recognized as the 2018 Emerging Physical Activity Leader for the State of Iowa during the Iowa Governor’s Conference on Public Health held in Des Moines April 10-11. Jes has been an incredible community partner for our Safe Routes to School efforts in Fayette County and West Union. We are so proud of you, Jes!

Here at Walk Northeast Iowa, we’re all about incorporating walking, wellness, and health into our communities. This is not just a program; it is a long-term commitment to work together to achieve our vision of communities that support happiness and health for people of all ages. Click here to watch the video.

FOOD SYSTEMS – Teresa Wiemerslage & Kayla Koether

A glimpse of spring graced the sunny April 9 gathering of the Northeast Iowa Food and Farm Network at River Root Farm in Decorah. Thirty-five farmers and community members from around the region attended the gathering, drawn by Mike Bollinger and Katie Prochaska’s extensive system of high tunnel and season-extension infrastructure.

EARLY CHILDHOOD – Haleisa Johnson

Guttenberg Head Start children had fun learning about Earth Day while listening to Kate Lower, Northeast Iowa Early Childhood FoodCorps Service Member read the book, ’10 Things I Can Do To Help My World’. The children learned about starting seeds and were able to plant seeds that can be used in their garden.  This was a great way to engage the students in environmental issues while experiencing the local food system by discussing gardens and planting seeds.

SCHOOL WELLNESS – FoodCorps and AmeriCorps Service members

With gardens all covered in snow, spring fever is here!

In preparation of the warmer weather, Postville 4-H Garden Club students made seed tape with carrot and radish seeds. When spring finally breaks, they’ll be ready to plant that garden!


Central Garden club members tried out some garden themed yoga.

Decorah first graders had extra special visitors in Wellness classes this week. Rubiayat owners, Andy and Kim Bonnet, came to talk to them about eating healthy foods and buying local to support our farmers and community. Chef Andy created some masterpieces out of fruits and vegetables, and they brought ingredients and taught students how to make a healthy (and fun!) snack.


A school garden team can serve essential needs in planning, establishing, and maintaining your garden program. But who should be on this team? Teachers? Administrators? Community members? Students? Yes, yes, yes, and yes! Learn more about forming a balanced garden team and the ways that the team can enhance garden-based education at your site. (Spoiler alert – community volunteers are key!)

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