Dinner by the farm at the YMCA

Jul 22, 2018

A cool breeze did not put a damper on the festivities at the Dartmouth YMCA's 9th annual Farm to Table Dinner, as more than 200 people gathered to support the organization at its largest fundraiser of the year.

“It’s a big night for us,” said Maia Shwartz, the YMCA’s director. Shwartz noted that this is the biggest attendance they’ve ever had at the event.

Proceeds from the event benefit the YMCA’s annual campaign, which supports programming including the Dartmouth YMCA's on-campus Sharing the Harvest Community Farm, subsidized tuition for summer camps, a diabetes prevention program, the Livestrong program, swimming lessons, and more.

In addition to dinner, the event featured silent auctions, drawings for prizes, and music by the band Group Therapy.

Set overlooking the Dartmouth YMCA's community farm, the success of the farm gave visitors and staff alike another reason to celebrate.

Rebecca McCullough, a member of the farm committee, wrote the initial grant for the farm back in 2005. She said the farm’s growth has been amazing. In its first year, the farm grew 5,000 pounds of produce, and in 2017, it produced over 94,000 pounds.

“It’s a great program,” McCullough said. “What’s really great is it’s all volunteers, and it’s also very educational.”

She explained that many school groups come on field trips to the farm, and children get to work a little bit on the farm and learn by doing.

The Sharing the Harvest project, through which the YMCA farm donates all of its produce, is a partnership with the United Way of Greater New Bedford, which transports and delivers all the produce and eggs.