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What does it mean to be an Urban Ecologist?
To study the biodiversity of life in an urban or populated environment, assist in its preservation,and spread the message
Now, what does it mean to leave your mark on the world? Well if you didn’t know, it is just the same as the job of an urban ecologist. The two connect solely on their bases…to spread a message and have it outlive you. So when the newly formed group of Urban Ecologist, run by the Seneca Park Zoo and the Summer of Opportunities Program as well as 540 West Main Interns joined together in collaborating and making the vision of a nutrition and teaching community courtyard garden a reality, a positive mark was definitely being left. The vision of the community was envisioned by the owner of the property Calvin Eaton and he made it a confirmed goal for the community on April, 19, 2017, when he posted his special announcement on his blog revealing the launch and design layout of the future garden. The project was partially funded by The Awesome Foundation Rochester and they have put in one thousand dollars to help (big time) develop the vision and their donation has been greatly appreciated and will jump-start the development of the project.Progress was made on the community garden on July 12, 2019 when the Urban Ecologist and 540 West Main interns collaborated. After the two groups oriented themselves with each other, work began.
Chris Widmaier spearheaded the operation and provided tools necessary, taking charge of both groups and laying out various tasks such as removing weeds, rolling rocks, grading, preserving plants, breaking up concrete, composting, categorizing insects found (which is vastly important) and more. Progress is still being made on the future garden, and the two groups will continue to collaborate to create that vision into a reality to assist in making the community a more interconnectedness place.Big thanks to Calvin for having the idea and the inspiration to jump-start something so positive in his community which ultimately benefits the city, as well as to the Awesome Foundation for seeing the potential in his vision and choosing to fund it. Last thanks to the 540 West Main group and Urban Ecologist for taking the vision, the funding and being able to act and put in the work to make a reality out of it. This is the beginning of a great start towards more eco-minded people, who have the incentive to assist their environment through food, fresh food that comes from a garden and delivered directly to you.
Wesley is a rising junior, attends School of the Arts in the Rochester City School District, and is a Urban Ecologist with with Seneca Park Zoo. He studies creative writing.