50 Years in Milwaukee
Alice’s Garden is a Milwaukee staple that has reached 50 years of operating in the city. It was established to create a space for the community to learn how to grow their own healthy food, and that’s exactly what it has been doing.
Alice’s Garden has become a place for peace through projects, workshops, and events like their weekly walks where community members can experience the labyrinth.
“We use gardening as the carrot to impact the entire quality of life,” said Executive Director and Minister Venice Williams. The urban farm resides on 21st and Garfield, which came after the city built a freeway through thriving Black neighborhoods and businesses.
The Meaning Behind the Name. Meet Alice Meade-Taylor
Alice’s Garden was named in 2001 after Alice Meade-Taylor when she passed away. Meade-Taylor was the first African-American executive director of the Milwaukee County Cooperative Extension. She was also an advocate for urban community programs in Milwaukee.
Her career was focused on education, specifically on youth issues and drug and alcohol abuse programs. Later on, she went on to teach people about cultural diversity and multiculturalism.
“Alice’s Garden reminds us of how we’re supposed to be,” said Williams.
The first year Williams took over the garden she didn’t plant anything, instead she tended to the soil and gave the space lots of love.
Lineage of Farmers
Williams’s knack for gardening comes from her lineage of farmers. Her family is from Alabama but she grew up in Philadelphia where she learned how to grow food. It wasn’t until her adult years that she learned that most people don’t know how to cultivate their own food.
Through her work, Williams, along with the help of many, is teaching generations how to grow.
“We can make the change to be a stronger community, a stronger neighborhood, a stronger nation, but we have to create intentional spaces that cultivate people in the best ways.”– Venice Williams
Supporting the Cause
To support Alice’s Garden, click here.
Nyesha Stone founded Carvd N Stone in 2017 to cover positive news while attending the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Stone has a B.A. in Journalism. She has raised over $30,000 to award grants and scholarships. She has also been featured in ESSENCE and worked with the American Black Film Festival.