Experimental Station is happy to host a photography exhibit from March 13th to 15th called South Side in Focus. The exhibit hours are 10:00AM to 6:00PM. There will also be a reception on March 14th from 5PM to 7:30PM featuring food from B'Gabs Goodies as well as select speaker appearances. Both the exhibition and opening event are free and open to the public.
South Side in Focus originated from an interest in broadening our understanding of the community we live in. We are a group of undergraduate students at the University of Chicago who recognize that the narrative of the South Side that is most often portrayed by the media is one that emphasizes violence and poverty. However, these narratives do not show the vibrant histories or complexity of experiences within these communities.
At the Experimental Station, we work with government, the private sector and other community organizations to test and advocate for models of food access that work for vulnerable communities, make the most out of the donated dollar, support local small farmers, and sustain the regional ecology.
In the spirit of measuring and sharing our results, we're going to run a short series of year in review on our involvement the farmers market and the healthy food access scene in 2013, from a few different angles.
Today, we're sharing some data and considerations on what types of foods low-income shoppers bought at the 61st Street Farmers Market in 2013.
61st Street Farmers Market
Since founding the Market in 2008, Experimental Station has worked to increase access to and affordability of fresh and healthy food for all residents in Chicago's Woodlawn, Hyde Park and surrounding neighborhoods. All our farmers and food artisans are local (Illinois, Wisconsin and Michigan) and grow, raise and produce their food following sustainable practices, with many being certified organic.
To ensure everyone in our community has access to fresh, clean food we offer the DVCP (Double Value Coupon Program) so that every LINK (food stamps in Illinois) shopper's purchase is matched up to $25 per market day. DVCP puts healthy food within reach of all budgets and invites low income shoppers to get a direct connection to where their food is coming from. Local small farms and food vendors take in more revenue from LINK purchases when there is a DVCP match.
On the left, a $25 dollar basket at the 61st Street Farmers Market. On the right, that same basket plus $25 more worth of food from the Double Value Coupons.
What Types of Foods
In 2013 our 61st Street Farmers Market cleared record amounts of LINK sales ($20,447.50) and DVCP as well ($18,692.00), #1 in the state of Illinois.
One way we can look to measure our impact is to ask: what kinds of foods did people spend their LINK money on when they shopped at the market? So we sliced the LINK sales data into food categories to get a sense of this:
We are excited to be presenting a two-week installation of works by artists and art collectives, all addressing the impact of the new Firearm Concealed Carry legislation in Illinois, which will go into effect on January 1.
Heads up everyone! After the last outdoor market on October 26th, we're not skipping a beat. Follow us inside for the indoor market season. And for the first time ever, the 61st Street Farmers Market will operate year-round.
Are you seeking entertainment of the spooky kind? The Hyde Park Community Players are presenting their yearly Halloween show, an Evening of Horror & Suspense on October 26th at the Experimental Station in Hyde Park. This is the Players’ fourth annual show of odd and macabre stories presented in the old-time radio style.
Come and see the Experimental Station this weekend. Our doors will be open from 9AM-5PM Saturday and Sunday, tours on the half hour. Part of Chicago Architecture Foundation's Open House Chicago. Free!
This is a free event and open to the public but registration is required.
What does #rape look like? From Steubenville to Maryville, how do we and the media respond to and depict male violence, masculinity, and the national epidemic of violence against women?
Market Manager Danny Burke teaches Woodlawn Youth about worm composting at a field trip to Growing Power's Iron Street Farm
Update 10/2/13: $2,960 raised so far! Just $3,040 to go!
On October 13th, The 61st Street Farmers Market Manager is lacing up his shoes and running all 26.2 miles of the Chicago Marathon to raise funds for the Market.
This Saturday, Experimental Station is thrilled to host Inside Out/11M, a large-scale art installation to celebrate America's diversity.
Come get your picture taken and we'll wheatpaste the walls along 61st Street and Blackstone Ave. By the afternoon, we'll have a large street art representation of our community. Cool!
We are super-excited to tell you that Justin Hines, a rising star in the Canadian folk-pop scene, has teamed up with the Experimental Station for a benefit concert, as part of his Vehicle of Change tour! We invite you to join us on Friday, July 12 at 7:30pm for an up close and personal experience with this inspirational man and his music.