Harvest Fairvale, it all started on Fair Oaks Blvd...
Most of the fruit we pick gets transported in peoples cars. Old Henry (1984 Ford 250 Diesel Truck) has moved the most fruit by far, thousands & thousands of pounds! But cars, wagons and SUV still pull their weight transporting the fruit for the project. It is amazing what a little creativity a roof rack and folding seats can do for small cars!
In the beginning.... well at least in the beginning of 2011, area residents of Orangevale, Derek & Jeanette York, started to notice fruit falling to the ground and rotting while taking walks on Fair Oaks Blvd. It bothered them, and after reading about Harvest Sacramento, they decided to get involved to see what they could do. Over the next few months they worked closely with Randy, the Harvest Sacramento project coordinator. After harvesting and training in the Oak Park neighborhood of Sacramento, both Derek and Jeanette decided it was time they start harvesting in their own neighborhood and community since they were passing by millions of pounds of fruit on the way to the Oak Park and other Sacramento harvests.
First starting out with family and friends harvesting area homes, they gradually recruited volunteers to help in the efforts. The Orangevale Grange and garden project leader, Heidi Guitron, joined in the efforts as well. The Grange supplied a place to sort the fruit for large harvests while the smaller harvests were sorted at the York home. Heidi assisted cleaning thousands of pounds of fruit with a small group of helpers.
In April 2012 Harvest Fairvale changed from Harvest Sacramento in Orangevale, to our Harvest Orangevale, and in May of 2013 changed it's name for the last time to Harvest Fairvale, to include a larger geographical region (Roughly the area of the Historical San Juan Land Grant). The Harvest Fairvale group branched out from Harvest Sacramento (a project of Soil Born Farms) to become an independent project. Harvest Sacramento & Harvest Fairvale work together but separately. The teams collaborate & work together on ways to improve the project, sharing volunteers and referring tree owners to each other. Special thanks to Randy Stannard for his continued dedication and mentorship to the Harvest Fairvale team!
In 2012 we harvested just under 10,000 pounds with the help of almost 50 volunteers, helping in tree scouting, harvesting, fruit sorting, fruit delivery and fruit distribution. This year, 2013, we are still going strong and are continuing to look for more leadership and amazing volunteers.
Whether you have lots of money, some or none, very few of us are eating enough fruits and vegetables. This year, we are encouraging our community to eat more whole fruits and vegetables. We will distribute some of the fruit in creative ways to the general community, to encourage better health as well as continue to find more ways to bring in healthier, fresher food & produce options to our local food closets.