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Grand Rapids residents ask city to follow through on pesticide-free parks commitment

This dispatch was added by one of our Nonprofit Neighbors. It does not represent the editorial voice of The Rapidian or Community Media Center.

Over 130 individuals and growing have signed a petition created by a Grand Rapids resident to ask the City to recommit to natural lawn care at 6th St and Canal parks.  

The City announced in April of 2021 that they will stop using synthetic pesticides and fertilizers at Sixth St and Canal Parks in an effort to protect the Grand River. However, the City changed its mind after only a few months, despite soil tests having been done and a plans having been made.   

“Transitioning turfgrass away from chemicals takes three to five years for optimal results,” explained Midwest Grows Green’s Ryan Anderson. "By discontinuing this project early on, the City gave our plan no chance to succeed.”

Natalie Hockamier, a longtime resident of Grand Rapids and member of Growing Green Grand Rapids, strongly believes Grand Rapids residents and businesses want safe and healthy parks. She inititated the petition, and is volunteering at an upcoming  'Ground War' Documentary Screening event September 9.  The documentary follows a filmmaker's investigation into the death of his father and the links to the golf industry and chemical lobbying. It will be held outdoors at Canal Park, courtesy of City Built Brewing, and is open to all.  The movie will be followed by a panel discussion on the progress of pesticide-free parks in Grand Rapids.




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