Lexington, MA is an amazing town with very powerful people. We were met with a potluck, which had so much food that we were able to pack it all and eat the leftovers for most of the week. At the potluck we met many people who are involved in various forms of environmental activism in the community. We learned about the Lexington Global Warming Action Coalition (LexGWAC) and the Interfaith Garden. The garden was started by different places of worship with the common goal of feeding the hungry in mind.
Fran Ludwig organized the welcome potluck as well as the climate café, which was on Friday. At the café, two members of the community presented: Jonathan Kenny, a chemistry professor at Tufts University, and Mark Sandeen, who is the head of Sustainable Lexington.
At the end of the climate café, Team Massachusetts showed a video that was based on an opinion editorial that Bill McKibben wrote. Interestingly enough, Bill McKibben grew up in Lexington, and also interestingly enough, Fran Ludwig was once his middle school science teacher. While my climate summer team was at the Lexington Farmers’ Market, more than five people boasted about how Lexington is Bill’s hometown.
At the market, my team met Janet Kern, one of the founders and goat keepers of LexFarm. The goal of LexFarm is to farm and, by farming, serve as an educational resource for the community. LexFarm keeps six goats in order to rebuild the soil that has been replaced with stones and rocks form a previous attempt at providing parking for cars. The goats forage the wild weeds and the manure is mixed with hay to create compost, which is then layered on the ground. Ellen Frye, a member of LexFarm, explained to me that the purpose of the goats is to help sequester carbon and trap it in the soil.
My team had the honor of attending a screening of The Island President. The film follows Mohamed Nasheed who is the former president of the island nation of Maldives and his struggles in making sure the climate document at Copenhagen 2009 was a strong one. Thanks to Marla, Craig, Vanessa, and 350.org, we had dinner with Nasheed that night. Later that week, my team attended the 350MA kick-off event and was inspired with all of the activists that were in the room.
Team Mass’s week in Lexington was an amazing start to the summer. We are glad to have been in Lexington and thank everyone who made it an amazing week for us.