Andover Townsman, Andover, MA


August 14, 2012

Local restaurant owner chips in to student farm stand

A course offering change is expected to hit the high school’s student-run sustainable garden in the years ahead, and one local business owner is chipping in to keep the garden growing.

Every Saturday at the Andover Historical Society’s Farmers Market, a group of Andover High students who work in the school’s garden sell the fruits of their labor alongside other farmers from around the region. Many of the students took the school’s Environmental Science course as freshmen, but this year the course isn’t being offered to students from that grade. Students will be able to take the course as sophomores, as an elective. But some members of the program worry this won’t be enough to keep the Andover High School garden going.

The garden grows in an atrium space at Andover High on Shawsheen Road.

Evan Doyle, 17 and one of the students who works on the garden, said the change in the course “is kind of a problem” for those who want to keep the garden strong.

“A lot of the students we get come from the Environmental Science course as freshmen. They get extra credit to help the garden, and they work on the garden during class,” said Evan. With the expected change, “the number of people doing the garden will be smaller.”

Recently, Matt Morello, owner of downtown restaurant Brasserie 28, said he met the students at their farmstand and tried their produce. After using some of the produce as ingredients in his restaurant’s meals, Morello went to the school to see the garden first-hand.

“We were able to go up and see it, and I think what they’re doing is amazing,” said Morello. “We were really inspired by them. We want to help them out.”

Next week, Brasserie 28 is one of hundreds of restaurants participating in’s Restaurant Week. For two weeks beginning Sunday, Aug. 19, every item Brasserie 28 sells from its Restaurant Week menu - each priced $33.12 as required by the Restaurant Week program - will raise money - $3.12, in fact - for the garden.

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