Intervale Center Grant Announcement
For the past 36 years, Patagonia has been funding grassroot environmental organizations in an effort to, as their mission reads, “to Save our Home Planet.” Skirack and Patagonia Burlington have been fortunate to be a part of this effort through grant support to the Intervale Center. In recent years, the grant has been given to the Intervale Center’s Conservation Nursery, whose focus is to raise and plant tens of thousands of native trees every year to support and improve water quality in Vermont. This has also been put forward to sequester carbon, fight erosion and build a better wildlife habitat.
This year, we are happy to announce that through Patagonia’s Action Works Grant Program, Skirack and Patagonia Burlington have been able to once again show our support with a grant of $20,000 to the Intervale Center: to support not just the continuation of critical conservation projects through the nursery, but to expand into supporting the organization’s broad range of conservation and agriculture projects aimed to strengthen community food systems. The grant is providing core resources to maintain the best services they can to their farmers, improve land and water quality, and bring more people into the good food movement.
It is no secret that the past year has been challenging for everyone and through Patagonia’s grant program, the Intervale Center is able to continue their hard work and efforts, while also planning for the future health of their organization.
Farms, Land, People:
About the Intervale Center
The Intervale Center's mission is to strengthen community food systems. Founded in 1988, the Intervale Center manages a 360-acre campus of farmland, trails and open space along the Winooski River in Burlington, VT. Their influence radiates out from this beloved place as they work across Vermont to enhance farm viability and land sustainability, and more broadly as they serve as a model for food and farming organizations throughout the world.
For 30 years, they’ve led a community food revolution. They’ve pioneered game-changing initiatives like community-supported agriculture (CSA), large-scale composting, food hubs and farm incubators. They continue to innovate so that more good food is available for anyone who wants it.
In Our Own Words:
What the Relationship Means to Us
"Having the Intervale resource with it's easy access to local Vermonters, and visitors in every season is such a haven within the city of Burlington. I have enjoyed using the lands for cross country skiing in Winter, hiking in warm weather, partnering with them to offer special events to our community, and of course eating the delicious berries from their harvest during the summer season. Their mission, growth and development is something I admire and love to support as an individual and as co-owner of a local outdoor business. Love our company's volunteer day experiences. I treasure the Intervale!" - Karen George, Patagonia Burlington / Skirack Co-Owner
“If you love the Intervale, be sure to thank Skirack / Patagonia Burlington. For over a decade, they’ve been instrumental in transforming the Intervale into a fun and safe place to be outside, right in the heart of Burlington! I am so grateful for their friendship and commitment to our shared vision to protect and celebrate nature.” - Mandy Fisher, Intervale Director of Development and Special Projects
"My first time at the intervale was kind of a pivotal day for me. I went down with my Environmental Studies class, all 100 of us, where we got a brief introduction from some of the staff about what the Intervale is, and what a meaningful part of the Burlington community it is. We then split up into groups and walked along the river trails, identifying native tree species and learning about the critical importance of riparian zones. This was September of my first year of college. I was a little lost, as all first years are, confused about what direction I wanted to steer my life in, and panicked about having to make a decision as monumental as a major. I signed up for Intro to Environmental Studies as a way to test the waters. This first field trip down to the Intervale ignited a sort of passion that I think I had always known existed somewhere inside of me. There was something about this community of farmers on this beautiful piece of land along the river (that used to be the town dump, no less!) that drew me in and made me excited about living in a place that supports organizations like the Intervale. I wanted to learn more about community based conservation, permaculture, local food systems to name a few. So I signed up for more environmental studies classes, loved them all, and eventually declared my major as such. I have a lot of gratitude for the Intervale for providing me with a bit of clarity through the fog of first semester Freshman year." - Zoe Spett, Patagonia Burlington
"It is truly empowering to have a brand as recognizable as Patagonia—with business ethics I can actually support—not just show up with dollars but show up in person to help out! The recognition that we are all part of a larger movement and the people at Patagonia want to be part of it, that is wind in our sails." - Patrick Dunseith, Intervale Lands Manage
"The Intervale has always been a place of solace for me--a place of rest, retreat, and rejuvenation. Whether I'm going for a run through the woods to clear my head, walking and talking with a friend, or just exploring the robust trail system, I always walk away from my experience feeling more connected to the Burlington landscape and community. I've been a teaching assistant for the introductory environmental studies class at the University of Vermont for the past year, and I've taught several labs at the Intervale, all of which have been the favorite of the semester. I watch my students return to a childlike state of curiosity as we talk about the flora and fauna that thrive in the Intervale, stopping to sample a wild black raspberry every now and then. We use this space as a case study for successful community care, an organization that centers around and for the needs of the people. I feel proud to have the Intervale in the place I call my home. " - Adela Miller, Patagonia Burlington
"Funding from Patagonia helps us provide flexible farm business services especially to new and beginning farmers. I also have to say that the Patagonia puffy was essential for those outdoors farm visits over the winter." - Sam Smith, Intervale Farm Business Director
"My relationship with the Intervale Center has changed the way I look at food, eat, breathe and recreate. It's an incredibly unique place tucked away on the outskirts of Burlington that provides me with a place to relax and have fun. I live a short distance away from the property and the trails have become an evening or early morning escape from the daily grind. I very much appreciate how easy it is to feel like you left Burlington, but still be within city limits. Through my volunteer work with the Intervale Center I became more familiar with how special our local food systems are. It prompted me and my partner to be members of the Intervale Community Farm for several years now. When not receiving my CSA, I do the best I can to support local farmers and producers directly whenever possible. The Intervale is a special place that I hope more people continue to find, explore and learn from." - Josh Gauthier, Patagonia Burlington
"One of the first companies that I reached out to for support for an environmental center when I started my career was Patagonia. More than 25 years later, they are still leading the pack in supporting important work that protects the environment, strengthens community, and innovates for positive change. Adding Skirack, a local favorite, to the mix makes it even better. Patagonia/Skirack/ Intervale Center - a great partnership for Vermont!" - Karen Jamiel, Intervale Donor Relations Manager