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12/31/2021 - Unveiling of the Riviera Beach Urban Farm and Restorative Garden
RIVIERA BEACH, FL. (Dec. 31, 2021) – The City is officially unveiling its Riviera Beach Urban Farm and Restorative Garden that has transformed residents’ refrigerators into healthy havens, hosted festivals and given a green touch to the city’s food desert.

The grand opening of the Urban Farm, 1621 W. Blue Heron Blvd., on Jan. 8 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. will include food, garden tours, kid activities, adult workshops, fun and games.

The Urban Farm, managed by Operation No Food Gap — an initiative of E-RoadMap Corporation — the City’s Parks and Recreation Department and volunteers, grew out of a need to feed people who are experiencing hardship.

“The grand opening is an opportunity to introduce the community to a hidden gem, a resource designed for the community by the community. We want the community to know the work Operation No Food Gap and the City of Riviera Beach have invested to make accessible fresh produce to its residents,” said Veleké Brown, CEO & Founder of E-Roadmap Corporation. “The grand opening is going to be a fun-filled day where not only will the public tour the spaces, but enjoy great snacks, workshops and conversations. All current COVD-19 precautions will be in place.”

E-Roadmap Corporation is a nonprofit organization devoted to the enrichment and empowerment of young minds to ensure the building blocks of a sustainable future. Its initiative, Operation No Food Gap involves utilizing Urban Farming as a solution to eradicate food deserts and educate communities on proactive measures to improving health. The organization wants to be a part of a long-term solution to eliminate the City’s food desert since there is only one grocery store in the City.

The Urban Farm was strategically stationed on Blue Heron Boulevard.

“Riviera Beach is deemed a food desert. Blue Heron is a major artery for the City and we wanted the residents to see the progress of change being made to eradicate food deserts,” Brown said. “E-RoadMap and Operation No Food Gap are known for hosting workshops for the youth and community. Having the location housed at Barracuda Bay and partnering with the Parks and Recreation Department seemed like a great fit considering many residents rely on Parks and Recreation for activities to engage the community.”

The first seeds at the Urban Farm were planted on May 14, 2021. In the first harvest, residents enjoyed cucumbers, cantaloupe watermelon, okra, radishes, butter lettuce, romaine lettuce, book choy, oriental spring mix, squash, zucchini, tomatoes, onions, peppers and black beans.

From May to September, the farm harvested and distributed close to 4,000 pounds of fresh, organic produce for Riviera Beach residents. Organization members and volunteers are in the process of planting the winter harvest.

In addition to regular garden opportunities, the Urban Farm has hosted three events catered to the senior community centered around healthy cooking, juicing and gardening; two garden workshops, one butterfly event for kids; a Halloween & Pumpkin Patch event and a Holiday Fun Day for the kids to enjoy. All of our events are FREE to attend.

The Urban Farm will continue to be the host for workshops centered around health, nutrition, gardening and cooking for the youth and the community. Through a partnership with The American Heart Association, the workshops will lead the way as the farm rolls out a Farmacy RX cohort program, an 8-month custom nutrition program that will track the health progress of participants.

“The garden will grow herbs specifically for cooking as well as building the immune system. This is particularity important to us as we continue to navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic,” Brown said. “We have many sections of the garden that attract butterflies, seating areas for residents to relax, read a book and enjoy the view, in addition to specific play areas for kids. We designed the spaces with the intention of inclusion so the entire family can find solace and enjoyment at the farm and garden.”

Volunteers are always welcome at the Urban Farm. There are numerous tasks from weeding, planting, harvesting, assisting with workshops, events and much more. Volunteers have a lot of fun while making a difference in the community.

For more information, visit
unveiling its Riviera Beach Urban Farm and Restorative Garden