Pilot Community Garden Proposal - 1971

BACG History Post #3

In June 1971, Cliffside Country Club sold its 45-acre property in the South End of Burlington to the City of Burlington. Federal and state funds paid most of the $230,000 cost. The City’s share was under $25,000. The Burlington Fire Department burned the Country Club building in July 1971 to pave the way for the new park.

Cliffside Community Garden proposal - Gardens for All

Garden Way Research eyed the public land as a site for a pilot community garden project. Sky Thurber presented the proposal to Burlington Parks Superintendent Sidney Baker and the Parks Commissioners in September, 1971. The proposal was questioned at first by some commissioners. Commissioner C. Lyman Calahan noted that the plan for a community garden showed promise. He asked what the difference was between considering a garden vs. a softball or Little League Field.

After the University of Vermont declined the first option to develop a community garden at the new park, the Parks Commission accepted the Garden Way Research proposal in November, 1971. A site near the Flynn Avenue entrance to Cliffside was plowed in preparation for the spring 1972 opening. Cliffside would become Oakledge Park later that year.