The Sustainability InstituteThe Sustainability Institute

By Katherine Richards

Equitable Development

Yesterday evening’s Upper Peninsula Initiative gathering focused on equitable development, a major focus in The Sustainability Institute’s, UPI’s parent organization, goal for the Upper Peninsula, as they work towards a more sustainable way of living.

Speakers included representatives
from Neighborhood House, The American Red Cross, and The Sustainability Institute.

Deborah LaRoche, the director of Neighborhood House shared the services and opportunities the agency has been able to bring to the Upper Peninsula through their admirable charitable work.


The local
American Red Cross branch came and talked about their free program, teaching residents to install smoke detectors in vulnerable homes around the neighborhood.

The Sustainability Institute also spoke about their revolutionary weatherization techniques used to reduce energy bills and environmental footprints with the Energy Conservation Corps. The program is designed to teach and train the next generation of industry leaders.

Guests enjoyed fried chicken, mac & cheese, cornbread and sweet tea from Martha Lou’s Kitchen, a New York Times acclaimed soul food restaurant located in the Charleston Upper Peninsula.

The Upper Peninsula Initiative is a public-private planning effort managed by the City of Charleston and the backbone organization, The Sustainability Institute.

For more information, please visit CharlestonUp.com or email info@charlestonUP.com.

Photos by Stan Foxworthy Foxworthy Studios.

Special thanks to our sponsor, Spectrum
Paint
, hosts, The Neighborhood House, and our awesome speakers and volunteers. We couldn’t do what we do without you!

By Katherine Richards

Materials

Tuesday evening’s Upper Peninsula Initiative gathering focused on materials, and local organizations that utilize them as sustainable resources. Perrin Woodworking hosted the event.

Dan and Katy Perrin, spoke about their local business, located in the Upper Peninsula. Their business, Perrin Woodworking, specializes in one-of-a-kind furniture pieces, personalized and designed using the finest materials Dan and Katy can get their hands on.

Drew Harrison, representing the Green Heart Project is no stranger to the UPI. He spoke at a gathering back in March, when he talked about the organization’s devotion to urban agriculture.

Last night, Harrison urged attendees to be mindful of wasteful disposal habits, and to instead, urge their communities to repurpose food and material waste.


Residents were able to get hands on experience with garden work, and learned how to construct raised beds — a technique frequently utilized by Green Heart.

Local materials were donated to help construct the garden raised beds thanks to

Carolina Lumber Sourcing, which representative Bill Watt shared a bit of his personal story, having a rich background in architectural restoration.

CLS takes great pride in being a premiere service provider for affordable, quality speciality lumber and flooring.

All Seasons Mulch is Charleston’s largest outdoor warehouse, with a wide selection of top quality mulch, gravel and other landscape terrain. The company also donated their resources, talents and time to the demonstration.

The audience was enthused to learn about the organization, their convenient retail location and revolutionary Bark Blower, designed to prevent erosion and conserve water.

Our garden inspired hors d’oeuvre were generously made and donated by Cru Catering, Charleston’s
#1
caterer for 16 years in a row, and a local UP business!

A lovely summer wheat beer was donated thank to our local UP brewery, Revelry Brewing. Special thanks to our sponsor, South State Bankour gracious hosts, Dan and Katy Perrin and our speakers and volunteers. We couldn’t do what we do without you!

The Upper Peninsula Initiative is a public-private planning effort managed by the City of Charleston and the backbone organization, The Sustainability Institute.

For more information, please visit CharlestonUp.com or email info@charlestonUP.com.

Photos by Stan Foxworthy Foxworthy Studios.

By Katherine Richards

CommUNITY

Last night was perhaps the craziest one on the Upper Peninsula events yet. St. Julian Devine Community Center hosted a fun, family-friendly UPI gathering focused on CommUNITY, a message resonating throughout Charleston following the attack on Emmanuel AME Church in 2015. 

The UPI event was in partnership with Charleston Promise Neighborhood,a local non-profit that has a mission to ensure all Charlestonians are engaged in their community, and to ensure every child is on track to graduate high school with the necessary abilities. CPN is located in the Upper Peninsula on upper Meeting Street.

The focus for the night was to bring together like-minded individuals on the Upper Peninsula, committed to uniting together in the face of tragedy. A message of unity is essential to the family oriented atmosphere Charleston is famous for.

Speakers of the night included Samantha Sammis, Sherrie Snipes-William, and Jay Bell.

Samantha Sammis is the Executive Director of Loving America Street, a group committed to demonstrating a love of Christ through community service. Loving America Street operates Laundry Matters, the only remaining laundry facilitator on the East Side.

Sherrie Snipes-William is the Executive Office of Charleston Promise Neighborhood, a long time ally of CharlestonUP. Charleston Promise Neighborhood’s mission is to ensure every child in the neighborhood has the supports they need to thrive.

The Sustainability Institute’s Energy Conservation Corps representative Jay Bell was also in attendance, updating residents on the status of the corps members and explaining SI’s ECC Program, how it benefits at ri
sk youth and veterans, and how the community benefits from their work.

A jump castle, arts and crafts with Enough Pie, basketball and snow cones kept the little future neighborhood leaders entertained.


A delicious variety of grilled chicken, ribs, burgers and hot dogs were available for everyone to enjoy.  A  local church helped to coordinate the selections, and had one of their members, a UP resident, prepare the meal.

This CommUNITY gathering was sponsored by BoomTown. A special thanks to Nina Magnesson, who does an awesome job representing the interests of this local online real estate company


Attendees were encouraged to participate in a survey to offer ideas for future projects and gatherings. The results are as follows.

The Upper Peninsula Initiative is a public-private planning effort managed by the City of Charleston and the backbone organization, The Sustainability Institute.

For more information, please visit CharlestonUp.com or email info@charlestonUP.com.

Photos by Stan Foxworthy Foxworthy Studios.

*UPI is a community centered, neighborhood oriented planning initiative, created with the needs of the areas it serves in mind. The results of any survey conducted do not use empirical methods of data collection, and are not necessarily reflective of the community at large.

By Katherine Richards

Art

Last night’s Upper Peninsula Gathering took place on 126 Williman Street, at the new downtown location of lowcountry’s own Fiery Ron’s Home Team BBQ. The topic of the night was art, so SI prepared accordingly. 

As guests enjoyed their delicious BBQ, donated by from HomeTeam, Cathryn Zommer of Enough Pie, and Fiorenzo Berardozzi with cone 10 studios took the stage.

Enough Pie is a catalyst for inclusive and inspiring community engagement in the Upper Peninsula, through dynamic partnerships, artistic collaborations and creative placemaking.

Berardozzi is one of cone 10 studios’ owners.
The studio houses a group of ceramicists using a gas-reduction kiln to minimize the effects on the environment.

Additionally, a representative from
The Spoleto Festival came and spoke last night. Spoleto’s prop warehouse is located in the Upper Peninsula. The representative talked briefly about their incentive to come to theUpper Peninsula for more space for all of their props, costumes and equipment, reiterating the importance of organizing with sustainable practices in the area. The Spoleto Festival, a staple of Upper  Peninsula living, is held annually, in
May.

Art is a very important part of life on the Upper Peninsula, and with so many great organizations, communities and cultures represented around the UP area, it is easy to understand why.

The Upper Peninsula Initiative is a public-private planning effort managed by the City of Charleston and the backbone organization, The Sustainability Institute.

For more information, please visit CharlestonUp.com or email info@charlestonUP.com.

Photos by Stan Foxworthy Foxworthy Studios.

*UPI is a community centered, neighborhood oriented program created with the needs of the areas it serves in mind. The results of any survey conducted do not use empirical m
ethods of data collection, and are not necessarily reflective of the community at large.

 

By Katherine Richards

Urban Agriculture

Revelry Brewing, a local brewery specializing in in-house made craft beer, hosted the Upper Peninsula Initiative’s gathering on urban agriculture. This UPI gathering brought together like minded individuals — devoted to creating a cleaner, greener, more sustainable future here on the peninsula.

Lindsey Barrow and Kate DeWitt of Lowcountry Street Grocery, the lowcountry’s mobile farmer’s market, spoke of their business’ mission to provide and sustain food access for impoverished communities on the peninsula. Their groceries ride around on an electric green school bus — the LSG bus. It has been renovated to store the fresh groceries until they find a home. Neat, right?


Guests were able to lend the big green bus a helping hand, suggesting potential bus stops for LSG.

Additional speakers included Germaine Jenkins from Fresh Future Farms and Drew Harrison with The Green Heart Project.

Fresh Future Farms provides the lowcountry with the cleanest, greenest eats around town — revitalizing unused greenspaces into green gardens ready for harvest. FFS is a nonprofit urban farm and grocery store, in response to addressing food, health and economic disparities on the peninsula.

The Green Heart Project embodies the mission of The Upper Peninsula Initiative, and delivers it directly to the hands of little ones. Its programs aim to instill the importance of sustainable development in students, through a local agricultural process.

The gathering on Tuesday welcomed about 90 guests — and yes, thanks to the gracious host, everyone had seconds.

Revelry gave a percentage of beer sales raises from the evening back to the initiative. Thanks!

A survey was conducted to help UPI decide which projects should be next on the to-do list.

The results of the survey are as follows:

The Upper Peninsula Initiative is a public-private planning effort managed by the City of Charleston and the backbone organization, The Sustainability Institute.

For more information, please visit CharlestonUp.com or email info@charlestonUP.com.

Photos by Stan Foxworthy Foxworthy Studios.

*UPI is a community centered, neighborhood oriented planning initiative, created with the needs of the areas it serves in mind. The results of any survey conducted do not use empirical methods of data collection, and are not necessarily reflective of the community at large.

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Equitable Development
Materials
CommUNITY
Art
Urban Agriculture