7th Annual Fall Harvest Festival takes over Buford Middle School

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (NEWSPLEX) -- On Friday evening, Buford Middle School hosted the seventh Annual Fall Harvest Festival, which celebrates and educates people about the collaboration between City Schoolyard Garden and the Charlottesville City School's to create gardens at various school locations.

"It's beautiful. We have hundreds of people here. Kids are running all over the place, and parents are dancing," said Eric Johnson, Principal of Buford Middle.

Buford is one of eight schools in the city that has a City Schoolyard Garden behind it.

"We haven't really been growing that much because we have been harvesting what last year's kids did, but I liked harvesting the corn," said Amelia Russel-Milstin, a student at Buford Middle.

Educators say Buford has embraced gardening on school grounds, and in the classroom.

"Our seventh and eighth grade students have gardening embedded in their curriculum," said Johnson.

The festival helps celebrate the work the students do at Buford, by letting community members tour the garden. There also is a DJ, free food, and cider.

Organizers say the mission of the garden is much bigger than showing it off at a festival.

"It's important for city kids, really an entire urban environment, to have a garden [like this one]. Schoolyard Garden, and all of our gardens, are becoming a part of the student culture," said Johnson.

City Schoolyard Garden officials say they are happy with the way Buford has taken command of the program.

"We want to make sure gardening and healthy eating are a part of the curriculum, just as much as Math and Science," said Aleen Carey, Chair of the City Schoolyard Garden.

To learn more about the program, visit the link in the sidebar.

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