Garden Preservation
Tu Pueblo Batay

CONTACT: Edwin Santana

LOCATION: Lot #: 21 & 22, 270-271 E. 4th St.

The name "Tu Pueblo Batay" means "Your Community Garden". It was founded in 1982 on a year to year, and is now switching over to the City's "Till" program. "Tu Pueblo Batay" has 20+ members and is a 50x100 plot of land. It has up to 500+ visitors a year.

Cultural and age diversity composition of the garden? For everyone, but dedicated to youth.

What kinds of plants, flowers, vegetables, animals? Corn, pumpkins, squash, collard greens, lettuce, blue corn, beets, cucumbers, peas, mustard seeds, carrots, sunflowers

Cultural and Educations programs? There is a stage for poetry readings, plays, bands, comedians. Kids are learning to write plays and poetry. Learning about Puerto Rican culture is emphasized which includes the agricultural aspect. Home base for a kids coed baseball team called the ³Cacicas² meaning leaders.

Garden began after homeless people living on the plot precipitated some fires. Tenants in next door building went to community board to apply for permit in 1982. Got assistance from Green Thumb, Green Guerrillas, and another garden. Mobilization for Youth was involved. Lease was not renewed for 1990-92 but renewed again in 1993.

Edwin got involved when PS 64 was closed down and there was no place to play basketball. His sister got hit by a car playing in the street and he decided it was important to give kids a safe place to hang out. With the encouragement of teacher/playwright/community activist, Bimbo, (in whose memory the garden is), Edwin starting getting the kids to come to learn gardening and puerto rican culture. Since 1993, there have been three events involving poetry, music, skits, and comedians. The bookstore, Agueybana, is sending someone to teach kids about playwriting. Edwin writes poetry himself.

Edwin does not know of any development plans for the sight. He is interested in knowing more about the Land Trust and coming to the meetings. He¹s not sure about being on the Board.

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