Our first Harvest Festival!

On 21st September we had our first Harvest Festival, with funding from Scottish Communities Climate Action Network and the Climate Challenge Fund and as part of the European Day of Sustainable Communities. When we signed up to the funding for the Harvest Festival, we pledged to use local ingredients as far as possible and we hopefully we would be able to use ingredients from the community garden, but it was still early in it’s inception and we weren’t sure just how much we would be able to grow this year. Especially since the Thurso Grows project didn’t even start until 1st May.


Well our fears were completely unfounded. What an abundance of potatoes, cabbage, onions, gourds, beans and all tasting so delicious and fresh! To say we were delighted is an understatement, and we certainly couldn’t have done it without the help of our amazing volunteers who come and join us in the garden, building and planting, every week. We were so glad to be able to showcase all the hard work that has gone one.

Once Sharon had given a list of what would be ready, Joan and Jacqui set to work making delicious treats for the day. There was fresh baked bread, it wouldn’t be a harvest festival without it, unusual but delicious concoctions like Joan’s chocolate and beetroot cake. Yum! Vegan friendly treats like blueberry cake and roasted vegetable tartlets. As well as the buffet we provided, guests brought their own treats they had made from things they had grown themselves. It was a real community experience, everyone banding together.


Perhaps the best part of the day was the early autumn warmth which helped encourage visitors to the garden. By the end of the Festival we had around 50 guests of all ages come and join us. Some regular volunteers, some who had just wanted to see what was going on in the Community Garden and some who came just to toast marshmallows but stayed for the amazing crafts that Sharon had organised.


There are many reasons that Thurso Community Development Trust wanted to build a garden for the community, to encourage people to be more aware of food choices, help people who would like to grow their own fruit and veg and help the community reduce their carbon footprint. This is very important to us and in Thurso Grow’s thoughts with every decision we make. Perhaps on of the greatest things for us however is that burgeoning community that is sprouting up around The Garden and how it has grown over the summer. We cannot wait to nurture and care for this community over the winter with more amazing events on throughout this year.

On 2nd November from 1pm – 4pm we will be holding a Samhain event, a Celtic fire festival to celebrate the beginning of winter. We will have food cooked on our new cob oven, bush crafts by Amara Bush Crafts, face painting and other winter crafts. Come and join us for this free event at Thurso Community Garden.

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