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"Pearl Jam concert helps kids' gardens grow"

  • Subject: [cg] "Pearl Jam concert helps kids' gardens grow"
  • From: "Lisa Rose Starner" lisa.rose@mixedgreens.org
  • Date: Tue, 23 May 2006 20:04:44 -0400
  • Thread-index: AcZ+xakl1/j6MYvTTJyVbu6lvAG7Xw==

"Pearl Jam concert helps kids' gardens grow"

Friday, May 19, 2006
By Troy Reimink
The Grand Rapids Press

Pearl Jam to kids: Keep on rocking in the Green world.

The band, playing tonight at Van Andel Arena, surprised local nonprofit
Mixed Greens with a big gift -- a dollar for every ticket sold. With about
10,000 tickets sold so far, the local organization, which teaches organic
fruit and vegetable gardening at local public schools, stands to reap a
hefty windfall. "It was pretty unexpected," said Lisa Rose Starner, Mixed
Greens executive director. She was contacted earlier this month by people
associated with the band and informed of the donation.

On its North American tour, which started last week, the rock band is giving
a dollar from each ticket sale to a charity or nonprofit organization in
every city it plays.  Recipients so far include Toronto's White Ribbon
Campaign, an organization of men working to end violence against women;
Albany's Grand Street Community Arts, which is trying to build an arts
center in the city; and Advocacy for Patients with Chronic Illness in
Hartford, a patients' rights service.

"We decided we wanted to put one dollar from every ticket sale into the city
that we're going to, into a foundation or local organization that we thought
was pretty cool," said Mike McCready, one of Pearl Jam's guitarists.  "We
thought that was a super-cool thing, to have kids learn how to do things
organically."

The 3-year-old Mixed Greens -- slogan: "Growing kids who grow gardens" --
runs gardens and after-school and summer programs in Grand Rapids at
Harrison Park and East Leonard elementary schools and Madison Middle School;
and in Wyoming at Taft, Parkview and Rogers Lane elementary schools. "We
just happened to be a perfect fit for the band's giving parameters," Starner
said. "There's a lot of demand for making kids healthy."

She said the money from Pearl Jam -- to be donated through its charity
establishment, the Vitalogy Foundation -- will help with staffing and
getting Mixed Greens gardens into more schools.

In each city, the foundation looks for organizations dedicated to youth, the
arts, education, the environment, healthy eating and community health, said
Sarah Seiler of Vandenberg Communications, a New York firm hired by the band
to handle publicity for the tour and to research charitable opportunities.

"Mixed Greens really helps to foster all of that," Seiler said.

The band is known for participating in political causes, notably the Vote
For Change Tour, which sought to rally support for John Kerry in the 2004
presidential election. Disillusioned with that experience, the band turned
its focus toward grassroots organizations. "We will speak our minds, but we
also learned we need to focus locally on how our lives are, then act
globally out of your local actions," McCready said. "Like, what are the
problems in my direct vicinity, and how can I have a positive effect on
them?"

Send e-mail to the author: treimink@grpress.com
C2006 Grand Rapids Press
C 2006 Michigan Live. All Rights Reserved.


______________________________


Lisa Rose Starner, MPA
Executive Director
Mixed Greens, Inc.
1444 Lake DR SE
Grand Rapids MI 49506
www.mixedgreens.org

~Growing Kids Who Grow Gardens~



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