Peachy the Magazine June July 2014 - Page 132

Green Space Make-Overs “There are so many parks in Charleston, the partnership between the Conservancy and the city and other organizations is a brilliant example of how nonprofits can benefit from cooperation, “ said Sally Ann “Sam” MacLaighlin Oliver, a CPC Park Angel. “The variety of projects they sustain— from maintaining existing parks, starting new parks, the vegetable gardening programs, expanding parks, fundraising events—all of it is well done and admirable. All the angels are gifted!” Magnolia Park and Community Garden opened in late April 2014. It has 40 raised beds available for lease as well as community beds where volunteers can learn more about gardening and help grow crops that will be donated to local food banks. 130 PEACHYTHEMAGAZINE.COM EMBRACING INNOVATION While much of the Conservancy’s work involved reinvigoration, renovation and renewal, its work also includes innovation. The CPC looks to engage the community through Urban Gardening education classes, providing community members to learn new planting techniques to bring plants, flowers, fruits and vegetables closer to Charlestonians—tweaking the concept of “farm-to-table” to “garden-to-table.” The Conservancy has also found that engaging technology—wi-fi—in parks is another way to bring the community outside, into the parks and create more interaction with Charleston’s civic spaces. “We have been amazed to find that by installing wi-fi in our parks we have increased use of our parks,” said Lesesne. “By giving people a digital connection we have seen an increase in these spaces.” Concerts have blossomed in various parks across the city. The Conservancy has partnered with the Spoleto concert series which included a very special event last year that featured the screening of the documentary “Olmstead and America’s Urban Park”—the story of world renowned landscape architect Frederick Law Olmstead. Part of Piccolo Spoleto, the