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Westport Selects Team To Manage Wakeman Farm

WESTPORT, Conn. – Work started by the Westport-based nonprofit Green Village Initiative at the Wakeman Town Farm and Sustainability Center will be continued by a four-person team now that the town is overseeing the property.

For the past two years, the farm — located on Cross Highway — was managed by Green Village Initiative , which held a $1-a-year lease with the town. That lease was officially terminated Wednesday by the Board of Selectmen.  A transition team has been established to manage the farm.

"Basically, our job is to keep the farm going," said Liz Milwe, one of the four members of the transition team. "Right now, we are looking for people interested in getting involved with farming or the sustainability center to come forward as volunteers."

In addition to Milwe, the transition team includes Cathy Talmadge ; Elizabeth Beller, who sits on the Staples High School PTA executive board; and Public Works Director Stephen Edwards . Milwe and Talmadge, both members of the Representative Town Meeting, are former Green Village Initiative board members.

Although management has changed, Milwe said the transition team wants to operate the farm under the Green Village Initiative's mission of being a sustainable farm open to the community. The farm will still act as a Community Supported Agriculture pickup location, she said.

"We're going to be having meetings and getting input from community on what people would like see" at the farm, she said. "Anyone with comments, ideas and thoughts can contact me by email — we're very happy to hear them."

The team will also begin raising funds and seeking donations and sponsorships, Milwe said. To maintain the farm through the end of the year, the team set a budget of $20,000, she said.

Anyone interested in volunteering at the farm can contact Elizabeth Beller at elizbeller@gmail.com .

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