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Published on March 3rd, 2012 | by Newt Rayburn


Gaining Ground Events in Oxford, Mississippi March 1-22, 2012

March 1–22, 2012


Spring is right around the corner and 2012 is shaping up to be an exciting year for sustainable activities and events in Oxford. The Oxford Community Garden has just begun a new season, our local organic farms have full greenhouses, and we’re working hard to bring Oxford a new Farmers’ Market where you can buy all sorts of local and organic produce. Thanks to everyone who attended our monthly meeting in February and we hope to see more of you at our upcoming meeting in March.


Saturday, March 3 – 8 am

Community Garden: New gardener orientation

New plot-holders at the Oxford Community Garden should come Saturday morning to learn their way around the garden and begin to work their plots. We’re already more than a week into the planting time for many cool season crops, and Saturday will be a great opportunity to get some beds planted and to get to know your fellow gardeners. There are a few plots remaining if you haven’t signed up.


Sunday, March 4 – 2 pm

Local Voice Garden: Contour design demonstration for hillside gardens

The good folks who publish your Local Voice newspaper are developing a hillside garden and Gaining Ground is going to help! We are laying out contours along the hillside as the first step in designing a series of terraces. You can join us and learn how to mark contours on a hillside for water-wise gardens using simple tools available to any novice gardener. We will demonstrate how to use an A-frame level as well as a water level. Check out our Facebook page for location and details.


Wednesday, March 7 – 7 pm

Environmental Film Series: Gasland

Overby Center Auditorium

The environmental studies minor, along with the Media and Documentary Projects Center, and the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Mississippi will be screening the film Gasland, which examines the controversial issue of hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking.” Fracking is a growing practice in the natural gas industry in the United States, in which drillers fracture bedrock shale using water under massive pressure, allowing access to new natural gas resources. A number of incidents of groundwater contamination and earthquakes have been attributed to fracking. Come see Gasland and learn more about the practice.


Sunday, March 11 – 2 pm

Local Voice Garden: Garden installation workday

We return to the Local Voice Garden a week after our contour demonstration to begin installation of the terraces. We’d like as many people as possible to come out and participate. The Local Voice brings you all sorts of useful information about events and culture in Oxford for free. Now is your chance to show your support and give something back! Check out our Facebook page for location and details. The Local Voice office is located at the corner of North Lamar and Molly Barr, right besides Three Way Grocery.


Monday, March 19 – 6 pm

Gaining Ground Monthly Meeting @ The Powerhouse

We will be back at the Powerhouse again for our monthly meeting. Topics will include the Farmers’ Market, Green Week, Oxford Smart Business Alliance, workshops and lectures, collective workdays, and more. Join us and become a Gaining Ground member, if you haven’t already.


Tuesday, March 20 – 6 pm (First Day of Spring!)

Oxford Board of Aldermen Meeting: Farmers’ Market

The Oxford Board of Aldermen has been considering approval of a new Farmers’ Market to be located on University Avenue by the Oxford Community Garden. The Farmers’ Market is scheduled to come up at the meeting on March 20, where it is expected to receive a final up or down vote. We encourage you to contact your aldermen and express you support for the new Farmers’ Market. You can find information about the board, as well as a map of the city showing which alderman represents your ward, on their Web site.


Note: There may be a special meeting convened sooner than 3/20 to discuss and vote on the Farmers’ Market.  Please call your aldermen NOW in case the meeting takes place sooner than expected.


Wednesday, March 21 – 7 pm

Environmental Speaker Series:  Sandra Steingraber

Overby Center Auditorium

The University of Mississippi Office of Sustainability brings Sandra Steingraber to Ole Miss to speak about “Environmental Human Rights from Silent Spring to Fracking Shale.”  Sandra Steingraber is an environmental activist, biologist, author, and outspoken cancer survivor who has been named ‘Woman of the Year’ by Ms. Magazine and heralded as “the new Rachel Carson” by the Sierra Club.  Check out the Campus Office of Sustainability at for more information.


CSA shares in Lafayette County

Yokna Bottoms Farm and Old Thyme Farm are still accepting memberships for their 2012 CSA shares, so sign up now to receive fresh organic produce and meat throughout the growing seasons.  Check out their websites for details.




Thanks to everyone involved in putting on these events and thanks to all of you who participate. For more information you can check out our Facebook page or shoot us an e-mail at You can also call chapter president Trey McCain at (662) 315-7068.  See you soon!

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About the Author

Newt Rayburn founded THE LOCAL VOICE in March of 2006. Previously, Newt was Editor of PROFANE EXISTENCE in Minneapolis, and Art Director for Ole Miss' LIVING BLUES magazine. Newt won a National Magazine Award in 1999 for his SOUTHERN MUSIC ISSUE with THE OXFORD AMERICAN. A seventh-generation Lafayette County, Mississippian, Newt Rayburn's alter ego—Neuter Cooter—lead the Mississippi band THE COOTERS to Rocknoll Glory across the USA from 1993-2018. Newt is a family man who also is a publisher, photographer, writer, musician, landlord, and Civil War enthusiast.

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