Month: November 2013

Find Us at Mill City Winter Market

Our Garden Program will be participating in the Mill City Winter Market! We will have a variety of youth interns’ handmade goods available. If you are interested in checking out our garden goodies for sale, please visit us at the market on Saturday, November 23 and Saturday, December 14 from 10am-1pm inside the Mill City Museum!

Great youth-made items for holiday entertaining will be available such as:
Hand-printed fruit and veggie holiday greeting cards (single or sets)
Salsa Verde
Green Tomato Chutney
Ground Cherry Jam
Herb infused vinegars
Packaged dried herbs (assortment of herbs available)

Unable to make the market but wish to purchase some of our products? We will also be hosting an Urban Roots Holiday Product Sale on Tuesday, December 10 from 3:30-6:30pm at the Urban Roots office. Feel free to contact Summer, Garden Program Manager for more details on either event.

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Youth: Get Paid EMT Training!

Paid Youth Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) Certification and Firefighter Awareness Program

Application deadline extended until 11/22/2013

Have you heard about this great opportunity for St. Paul residents aged 18-24? Get paid training and certification in EMT! People working in this field can earn $40,000-$50,000 annually.

The Saint Paul Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Academy is an intensive Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) certification and firefighter awareness program.


1) 240-hour program

2) Must be youth ages 18-24 and residents of Saint Paul

3) Admitted participants are paid an hourly wage for training, which lasts 10-14 weeks

Upon graduating from the EMS Academy, alumni earn National EMT certification, 9 college credits through Inver Hills Community College, and valuable job competency training.

The EMS Academy is a collaboration of the Saint Paul Department of Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity (HREEO), the Saint Paul Fire Department (SPFD), Saint Paul Parks and Recreation Youth Job Corps (YJC), Saint Paul Public Schools (SPPS) Hubbs Center, and Community Action Partnership of Ramsey and Washington Counties (CAPRW).
 Learn more at and

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Hub Harvest Dinner Success

Last week’s East Side Food & Wellness Hub Harvest Dinner was a great success. We had 80 community members in attendance!

Attendees enjoyed a delicious three course dinner with great local food, including lots of produce from the Urban Roots gardens. Many people learned about the Hub for the first time and became interested in becoming a member. We also received some great feedback from flip charts and lots of surveys that Gardening Matters will use to support the program next year. The food, face painting, feedback and presentations combined to make it a wonderful time. It was great to see community members enjoying good food, having fun socializing and spending time together!

Thank you to everyone who volunteered and helped make the event a success, especially Allina Health for the Neighborhood Health Connection Healthy Activity Grant that provided funds to make this event possible.

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Hub Hosts Fall Harvest Dinner

The East Side Food & Wellness Hub is excited for the opportunity to bring together Hub members and community members for our Fall Harvest Dinner!

The event will be held at First Covenant Church on Tuesday, November 12th from 5:30-7:30pm. A multi-course dinner will be served by local chefs and Urban Roots’ youth interns and will include food from many cultures. Dinner and activities will be a great chance for everyone to meet some of their fellow community members, gardeners and food lovers. You will also have the opportunity to learn about resources available to East Siders including the Hub and the new Twin Cities Mobile Market.

Thanks to a great response from community members, this event’s registration is now closed. Please continue to follow the Urban Roots blog for exciting events in the future!

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Career Profile: Food Stylist

What does a food stylist do?
A food stylist is a creative professional who prepares food for photographs or television. They will often work closely with chefs, editors and photographers. Food stylists usually prepare dishes and use styling techniques so food looks great and lasts for the length of the photo shoot. In some cases, the food stylist might also be the food photographer as well. Many food stylists work as freelancers, but some companies also hire in-house food stylists.

What type of schooling do you need to become a food stylist?
Although it’s not necessary, many food stylists have a culinary arts degree from a culinary institute or trade school. An associate’s or bachelor’s degree in culinary arts can also be helpful. Studying art, photography and/or business may also assist in becoming a food stylist. Working or interning under an accomplished food stylist is a good way to learn some tricks of the trade.

What types of skills are best suited to becoming a food stylist?
Understanding of both art and science: Preparing food for photographing requires many different skills. Food styling is both an art and a science. Food stylists need to truly understand the properties of the foods they cook for photo shoots in order to know how far in advance they need to be made. This includes knowing what color an item would appear if it were freshly baked or how to alter chemical compounds of the food so it looks its best and lasts longer.
Interpersonal skills: Food stylists, especially freelance stylists, are constantly meeting and working with new people including photographers, art directors and clients who are paying for the photos or filmed food.
Attention to detail: Food stylists must arrange the food just right so it looks the most appetizing and beautiful. This requires an eye for aesthetics and an attention to detail.

What is the job outlook for food stylists?
In general, the amount of money a food stylist will get paid will vary, depending on several things. Food stylists in larger cities will usually be more in demand, for instance, and can therefore command a higher fee. Since many food stylists work as freelancers and the Bureau of Labor Statistics does not collect data for this particular profession, calculating the average salary of a food stylist can be difficult. Individuals who work in special food services are the closest type of professionals to food stylists. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, these professionals made an average salary of $40,890 in 2010.

It is difficult to project the long-term career outlook for food stylists for a number of reasons – mainly due to the fact that their profession is fairly small in size. Nonetheless, over the past few decades, the food stylist profession has grown slowly with the needs of various media outlets.

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Why November 14th is the Day to Give

Every day Urban Roots is changing the way local youth think about food, the environment and their role in the community. We employ more than 45 local teens annually through our Garden Corps, Nutrition Corps and Conservation Corps youth internships and teach more than 1,400 children and parents about healthy eating, gardening and environmental stewardship.

Give to the Max Day is November 14 and Urban Roots has the opportunity to receive up to $500 through a matching grant from Youthprise! Every donation you make gives us a chance to win even more money through’s “golden ticket” $1,000 random giveaways, matching gifts and drawings for participating groups to receive extra donations.

Throughout the 24 hours of November 14th, we will collect online gifts to support our work to build vibrant and healthy communities through food, conservation and youth development. Here’s the really exciting part: At the end of Give to the Max Day, one donation from across Minnesota will be randomly selected for a $10,000 Super-sized Golden Ticket!

“Urban Roots has really taught me important skills that will help me in my future. They make our [youth interns] growth a priority and really work with us to better ourselves. At my other job, no one invests in me or my future. I love being a part of such a great organization!”
–Nancy, age 16, third-year Urban Roots Youth Intern

Won’t you support Urban Roots and Give to the Max? Thank you!

You can also follow our work via Facebook and Twitter.

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