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August Monthly Meeting Recap

The August 16, 2022 combined RCMG-WCMG monthly meeting was held in-person at Gibbs Farm in Falcon Heights.

8/20/2022


The August 16 monthly meeting was held in-person only and was a combined meeting with Washington County Master Gardeners and interns. For this reason there was no volunteer training or RCMG business meetings. It was held at Gibb’s Farm at 2097 Larpenteur Ave W in Falcon Heights.



THANK YOU

Many thanks to the RCMG volunteers involved with the August Meeting:

  • Education Committee: Sue Ellen Campbell & Jane Carlstrom

  • Parking Lot Attendant: Jan Fransen

  • Journalist: Jeni Raddatz Tolifson

  • Set-up: Alex Meyer & Linnea Mohn

  • Greeters: Barb Frederick & Kathy Vail

  • Clean-up: Linnea Mohn, Linnea Tani & Kerry Morgan

Bingo 6:00-6:30pm

This is an oldie but a goodie in the way of getting to know fellow Master Gardener volunteers, interns, and mentors.


Darren Lochner's Coordinator Updates (6:45pm-7pm)

Darren reminded RCMG volunteers and interns to record their hours. Darren reminded us that Oct 1st is the application deadline for new interns and shared ideas on where to recruit. He introduced Nancy, the program coordinator from Washington County. Nancy discussed some projects they have been working on in Washington County.


Guest Lecture – Claire Holte of Gibb’s Farm (7-8pm)

Claire Holte has worked for Gibb’s Farm since 2016 and started as a site interpreter and worked into a coordinator position for Adult volunteers. Claire brought us through the history of Gibb’s Farm going all the way back to Janes Gibbs’ childhood.


Jane was adopted by a missionary who moved his family to MN and started a mission school at Cloud Man Village of the Dakota tribe. She made relations with the women and children of the tribe over the several years they lived there. Since the father ‘wasn’t very at his job, the family moved on to Illinois where Jane married and they moved back to MN and bought the 160 acres, eight of which include where the Gibb’s Farm still sits on today. Jane reconnected by chance with the local Dakota she had known as a child and they would stay on her land for a few weeks every fall until the Dakota were expelled from MN.


The Gibb’s were market farmers for the rest of their lives and their daughter Abbey then ran the farm until her death. Her husband then sold the farm and land to the University of MN. In 1949, the Ramsey County Historical Society (now located in the Landmark Center) was created to save the house. The farm now focuses on education and has approximately 15,000 children touring the farm yearly. They now have a temperature-controlled building and are planning more year round activities.


There are currently the following gardens on the property:

  • Pioneer Garden with many vegetables

  • A prairie

  • A native medicine garden

  • An orchard

  • They also raise pigs, ducks, chickens, goats, and sheep

They have a new book available – Grasshoppers in My Bed – which is based on one of the Gibb’s daughters LillyBell. The book is written by Terry Swanson and illustrated by Peggy Stern. They also have the magazine, Ramsey County History available.


Read more about Gibb's Farm: https://www.rchs.com/gibbs-farm/


Questions asked during the Guest Lecture

  • How many farm staff? Three full-time employees plus 15/20 site interpreters.

  • Where did the school house come from? It was brought in from Chippewa County.

Gibb’s Farm tour & socializing (7:30-8:30)

A tour was given by Claire. Attendees were encouraged to explore on their own while socializing with other volunteers.


A view of the prairie on Gibbs Farm, with sunflowers in front and the pioneer buildings in the background
A view of the prairie on Gibbs Farm

Volunteers explore Gibbs farm
Volunteers explore Gibbs farm

Claire Holte talks about Gibbs Farm while holding a vegetable from the garden
Claire Holte shares information on a garden tour


Recap provided by Jeni Raddatz Tolifson

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