Sunol AgPark Community Engagement

 

Funders: San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, Sunol AgPark event sponsors, including Clif Bar Company, Whole Foods, New Seasons Community Markets, Chevron, Diablo Foods

Date of project: 2006 – 2016

The Sunol AgPark provided many public engagement opportunities for the nearby Sunol, Tri-Valley, and Fremont communities as well as for the greater Bay Area.  Activities included workdays, events, and tours, focusing on the many aspects of sustainable agriculture.

SAGE offerer volunteer work days and community service projects for interested educational groups, organizations and companies. The Clif Bar Company company work day at the Sunol AgPark engaged around 300 employees in a variety of infrastructure building and site maintenance projects at the AgPark.

Educational groups and organizations regularly visited the farm for educational farm tours and employee retreats. Visiting groups have included UC Berkeley School of Public Health, East Bay Regional Parks District, Chinese Ministry of Agriculture, Veritable Vegetable Inc., and RSF Social Finance, among many others.

SAGE also hosted its own events at the Sunol AgPark.  The Harvest Festival held annually since 2013, attracted numerous program and vendor partners, local volunteers, and over a thousand participants from around the Bay Area. The Harvest Festival offerec the public a chance to explore the AgPark farms, talk to partners, learn about environmental and educational organizations in the Bay Area, and celebrate the fall season on a working farm site.

In 2014 and 2015, SAGE hosted a plant sale and open house at the Sunol AgPark. Farmers and event partner, Alameda County Master Gardeners, sold plant starts to the public and shared information about their farming operations and organizations.

The Sunol AgPark also offered numerous opportunities for farmers to network and build connections. The AgPark farmers regularly hosted events on their own farms including farm tours for their supporters, informational workshops, and celebrations of their own farming heritage such as the Korean Chuseok Festival. The Sunol AgPark also provided networking and educational opportunities for farmers through beginning farmer and rancher support, with a focus on production workshops on a wide range of topics.

In 2014, SAGE hosted a celebration dinner for the Bay Area Beginning farmer community to connect and celebrate with each other at the end of the three year Beginning farmer and rancher development Project with Alameda County Resource Conservation District.

As of 2017, the Sunol AgPark management has been taken over the the Alameda County Resource Conservation District. Please visit their website for more information on events and opportunities at the Sunol AgPark.