From pumpkin-picking for kids to farmers markets, Venetucci Farm is a beloved institution in the Colorado Springs community. We ask locals what it means to them, and what they know about water contamination and the land's future.
Michelle Larkins of the Hillside neighborhood is a researcher.
What impact does community agriculture have on Colorado Springs? It is incredibly important for young people to understand where their food is coming from and, through community agriculture, to keep dollars in our local economy, and even to understand the rights of workers outside of our state who work on big farms.
What is your impression of the recent events surrounding Venetucci Farm? I think that it clearly states how little Colorado Springs' local government values community agriculture. The way in which Venetucci Farm has been made a scapegoat and not helped and the issues we have with water in this community, the way we are silencing the victims in Security/Widefield, we have sent the message that we don't care.
What, if anything, do you think should be done to ensure the farm has a future? I think that we need to show our support with our dollars, where we can, and for those of us who can't support with our dollars we can support with our labor.
Maggie Turner of downtown is a concerned citizen.
How were you first introduced to Venetucci Farm? Through Ivywild and when they were doing the barn-raising. And I know that Bristol gets all their pumpkins from there for their pumpkin brew every year.
What impact do you think the farm has had on Colorado Springs? My understanding is it is the only local farm to Colorado Springs. So, as far as any food grown locally, that is pretty much it. Which is crazy.
Have you been following the recent events? I know there have been issues with water in the Fountain area, which includes where Venetucci Farm is located and because of that they have put a hold on production, or at least the selling of product and planting next season. It is sad. It is really a bummer.
Lindsay Deen of Union and Vickers is an educator and home caregiver.
What was your first introduction to Venetucci Farm? When I was in grade school and there was a pumpkin-picking thing. I was at Roosevelt Elementary and we went out there and picked pumpkins and rolled in the hay.
What impact do you think the farm has had on Colorado Springs? I think giving people the chance to experience what a farm is really like and experience what local produce is like. I know that my family going to that farm led to my parents creating their own garden.
What, if anything, should be done so that the farm is available to the community in the future? I think that we should, as a community, come together and offer support and whatever we can do. They have been a part of this community for as long as I can remember.