The Prairie Crossing conservation community and Prairie Crossing Farm in Grayslake are featured on an episode of Growing a Greener World, airing nationwide on PBS stations.
The Liberty Prairie Foundation will host a free screening of the “Greening of Suburbia” episode at 7 p.m. Wed., Nov. 5 at the Byron Colby Barn, followed by a discussion with those involved in the filming. Anyone interested in sustainable development, conservation, and local food is invited to attend.
Liberty Prairie Foundation President and CEO Brad Leibov said he is encouraged by the growing interest in sustainable local food systems, and livable communities.
“We are gratified that the Growing a Greener World producers invited us to share our story with a national audience,” he said. “George and Vicky Ranney, the visionaries and developers of Prairie Crossing, have inspired similar conservation-minded communities across the United States, through the success of Prairie Crossing.”
Attendees will enjoy complementary certified organic popcorn grown at the Prairie Crossing Farm by resident organic farmers Sandhill Family Farms, featured in the episode. The Byron Colby Barn is located at 1561 Jones Point Road in Grayslake, inside the Prairie Crossing conservation community. Ample free parking is located in the parking lot adjacent to the Barn.
Prairie Crossing is a nationally recognized master-planned conservation community in Grayslake, and one of the first modern developments in the country planned with a working organic farm. The 100-acre Prairie Crossing Farm is owned by the Liberty Prairie Foundation, which operates a variety of on-site programs including a Farm Business Development Center for beginning farmers, the Prairie Farm Corps youth development program, and educational events.
Multiple independent farm businesses are located at the Prairie Crossing Farm, growing certified organic produce for customers throughout the Chicago region. Sandhill Family Farms is there for the long-term while others “incubate” through the Farm Business Development Center, including Marigold Hill Organics, Midnight Sun Farm, Radical Root Farm, and Yaw-Ye Farms.
Sandhill Family Farms, the resident organic farm at Prairie Crossing, is featured in the Growing a Greener World segment. Jen and Jeff Miller, farmers at Sandhill, share their experiences of living, working and farming within the Prairie Crossing community.
“We enjoy the unique relationship we have with our neighbors and CSA members,” Jen Miller said. “Our children go to school together, we chat with each other about the farm regularly and we enjoy sharing with our neighbors what goes on at a working farm as they pick up their produce each week.”
Growing a Greener World is an award-winning TV show appearing on national Public Television that features organic gardening, green living and farm-to-table cooking. Each episode focuses on compelling and inspirational people making a positive impact on the planet. Currently in its fifth season, this gardening series covers everything from edible gardening, urban homesteading and hobby farming to seasonal cooking, canning and preserving the harvest.
The Growing a Greener World episode features scenic vistas of the community, organic farm, and award-winning Prairie Crossing Charter School; inspiring interviews with organic farmers, area youth, and key leaders; plus a glimpse of several environmental features of Prairie Crossing and organic farm operations at the Prairie Crossing Farm.
“Local food farms provide residents with healthy food while providing improved land health and economic benefits for the entire community,” said Brad Leibov. “Economists estimate that 90-95% of the $48 billion worth of food consumed in Illinois is produced elsewhere. If Lake County consumers bought $5 of food from local farms each week, those farms would earn an additional $182 million per year, or $468 million annually county wide.”
The “Greening of Suburbia” episode can also be streamed on the Growing a Greener World website, http://www.growingagreenerworld.com/new-green-communities/. For more information about the Prairie Crossing Farm and Liberty Prairie Foundation, visit www.libertyprairie.org.