LL-H early college students develop community garden | News, Sports, Jobs

Garrett Neese/Daily Mining Gazette
Lake Linden-Hubbell High School fifth-year senior Beau Hakala delivers a presentation on his senior project at Monday’s meeting of the Lake Linden-Hubbell Public Schools board Monday. Pictured from left are Secretary Lori Ambuehl, Superintendent Brad Codere and President Patricia Burton.

LAKE LINDEN — A student in Lake Linden High School’s early college program gave the board a presentation on his senior project Monday night.

Beau Hakala, a fifth-year student at Lake Linden, developed a community garden for his project.

The three-year program is a partnership with Gogebic Community College that began in 2015.

Hakala partnered with student Gabriel Poirier for the project. Seniors are required to complete a project of at least 15 volunteer hours benefiting the community before they graduate.

They talked with Poirier’s father, Lake Linden Clerk Bob Poirier, about any needs the village had. Their suggestions included cleaning up the village park or performing maintenance at village buildings. Bob Poirier suggested a community garden, which had been discussed but never made a reality.

“Once we had heard that there was an idea of a community garden, but one was never built, we decided to make constructing a community garden our senior project,” Hakala said.

The Village Council and Downtown Development Authority both approved of the project. The students researched community gardens online and spoke with people who manage other gardens in the area. They decided on four raised cedar beds, each 4 feet wide, 8 feet long and 2 feet high.

Using lumber donated by Houghton Building Supply, Hakala and Poirier built the beds in Lake Linden’s public works garage. A village end loader hauled the 250-pound beds to the garden’s home near the Lake Linden school baseball field.

Residents found out about the gardens through Lake Linden’s village newsletter. It opened last summer, with people planting tomatoes, cucumbers and other foods.

“We hope that the gardens will continue to be enjoyed by village residents and then they will give residents a place to grow fresh fruits and vegetables for years to come,” Hakala said.

The village is responsible for upkeep of the garden. It will also be overseen by the organizer of the village’s farmers’ market.

More beds are possible in the future, Hakala said. Other future plans include putting up fencing to prevent deer from eating the plants.

In other action, the board:

— Approved up to $2,500 in Margaret Jones Scholarships for the 2021-22 school year.

— Approved up to $3,000 in Irving Clouthier Scholarships for the 2021-22 school year.

— Approved the Copper Country Intermediate School District Great Start Readiness Program Agreement.

— Scheduled a scholarship committee meeting to award district scholarships.

Today’s breaking news and more in your inbox