Just like last season’s Championship Plaza and this season’s The Treehouse, the Oakland A’s have announced yet another new improvement to the Oakland Coliseum: The Farm.
No, don’t worry, there won’t be a petting zoo, a herd of cows, or a John Deere tractor, but the Farm will be a unique and special new attraction for fans. Located at the south end of the East Side Club near the right field flag poles, it will feature an assortment of produce and flowers planted in large redwood planters along with picnic tables and benches so fans can watch and enjoy the game.
Rooted in Oakland. Literally.— Oakland Athletics ⚾️ (@Athletics) March 13, 2018
We're happy to announce the Farm, a unique garden on the south end of the Eastside Club near the right field flagpoles, debuting this season. Dozens of large planters will grow an assortment of produce and flowers, surrounded by picnic benches. pic.twitter.com/RykNxbYhlT
So what makes the Farm different from other gardens, pools, and special features at stadiums around the league? This garden is legitimately “Rooted In Oakland,” and not simply because of its location. To make the Farm happen, the A’s have partnered with Acta Non Verba, an East Oakland nonprofit whose mission is to create safe outdoor areas for people in the community to enjoy.
Acta Non Verba will then be able to sell the produce grown in the Farm. The money will go to students as long-term investments toward their college educations. The upkeep of the Farm will be in the hands of volunteer students of all ages as part of Acta Non Verba’s after-school volunteer program.
The Farm is not just another feature for the stadium — it’s helping Oakland community youths’ hopes for a better education and a brighter future. It will be a place where local children along with adult fans can not only enjoy the game but learn more about urban agriculture, play, relax and expand their horizons.
Kelly Carlisle, the founder and executive director of Acta Non Verba, says she is honored to partner with the Athletics and proud to be able to bring more attention to the nonprofit’s philanthropic work. Acta Non Verba is — like the A’s — also “Rooted in Oakland.”
A’s team president Dave Kaval echoed Carlisle’s sentiments, saying:
“We are thrilled to partner with Acta Non Verba to convert an unused space on the concourse into a unique, interactive gathering place for our fans. Acta Non Verba does wonderful work in Oakland, and this is a dynamic way for us to engage with youth and their families in our community while investing in their futures. This fun space brings a whole new meaning to ‘Rooted in Oakland.’”
Not only will the Farm teach fans about urban agriculture and support children’s educations, it will also educate them about Minor League Baseball by highlighting the A’s MiLB affiliates: the Nashville Sounds, Midland RockHounds, Stockton Ports, Beloit Snappers, and Vermont Lake Monsters. Each team in the A’s farm system will be represented by a scarecrow dressed in the team’s uniform and placed in planters around the Farm, and the area will feature in-game segments on the minor league teams’ accomplishments and prospect updates provided by NBC Sports California.
More importantly, however, celebrity chef Nikki Shaw will host a regular segment teaching kids about healthy living and eating as well as sustainability. The Farm will then not only be a boost to the Oakland community and to the Coliseum, but it will in fact be educating all its visitors on the importance of nutrition as well as saving the planet.
The Farm will be open to approximately 100 fans at a time, but the beautiful new space will also be available for groups of fans to book for pregame events.
The Farm is a wonderful new feature for the stadium promoting education, fun, baseball, and the importance of sustainability to the health of our planet. Plus, by working with an Oakland nonprofit that is also “Rooted in Oakland,” the Farm is yet another way to show A’s fans that the team is committed to the community.