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Celebrating Alice's Garden's 50th & Venice Williams' new position as head of Fondy Food Center

Summer fruit and berry variety. Flat-lay of ripe strawberries, cherries, grapes, blueberries, pears, apricots, figs in wooden eco-friendly boxes over grey background, top view
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This summer, there will be a number of events celebrating the contributions of African American and Indigenous farmers in the U.S.

The growing season is in full swing, and for Dig In! contributor Venice Williams it's been especially eventful. Williams is the executive director of Alice's Garden, which is celebrating 50 years of continued operations in Milwaukee. She was also just named the interim-executive director of the Fondy Food Center, operating the Fondy Farmer's Market, which is more than 100 years old. The food center also operates the Fondy Farm in the Mequon Nature Preserve, the Milwaukee Winter Farmer's Market and Fondy Park, located next to the Fondy Farmer's Market.

"People keep asking me, did you clone yourself? Are there two of you?" says Williams.

In celebration of Alice's Garden 50th anniversary (or Jubilee year), and as part of her new job leading the Fondy Food Center, there will be a number of events celebrating the contributions of African American and Indigenous farmers in the U.S., including reading circles dedicated to We Are Each Other's Harvest by Natalie Baszile. The book looks at the many ways enslaved, Black and Indigenous people created America's farming traditions.

Williams says she's also excited to announce a new afternoon market at the site of the Fondy Farmer's Market from 3-7 p.m. on Thursdays throughout the summer.

"What makes this market a little different than the other markets is that it is open to small businesses of all kinds," she explains.

Later in the summer on Saturday, August 6, the Fondy Food Center will also be honoring the contributions of Hmong farmers through a celebration of Hmong culture and traditions.

Williams says, "The Hmong farmers who are present at the Fondy Food Center, in my opinion, within our community just don't get the respect and the love that they should."

Joy Powers hosts and produces Lake Effect. She joined WUWM in 2016.
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