Turn a 30-year-old Organic Farm in Maryland into a Food Education Hub, Not Soccer Fields
  • Petitioned Isiah Leggett

This petition was delivered to:

Montgomery County Executive
Isiah Leggett
Montgomery County Board of Education
Montgomery County Board of Education
Board of Education
Superintendent Joshua Starr
State Board of Education
Maryland State Board of Education
Director of Public Affairs, Governor's Office
Rick Abbruzzese
Maryland Governor

Turn a 30-year-old Organic Farm in Maryland into a Food Education Hub, Not Soccer Fields

    1. Petition by

      Montgomery Countryside Alliance

Update: 12/15/11: Progress! The Montgomery Board of Education granted Nick's Organic Farm a lease extension, allowing the farm to stay where it is until August of 2012. Initially, the BOE said that Nick Maravell must vacate the farmland by January 1, 2012. Nick Maravell and his supporters will keep pushing until Nick's Organic Farm is allowed to stay indefinitely. 

Update 11/1/11: Partial Victory! A Food Policy Council to advocate for a just and healthy food system in Montgomery County is moving forward. The advisory board has been established, and the council has secured $38,000 in funding.

BUT: We are still fighting to Save Nick’s Organic Farm so it can continue to produce GMO-free seed, be a model for urban agriculture, and host a hub for agricultural education. We are continuing to build individual and organizational support to save this educational gem, but we only have two months to protect this farm! Thanks for your support!

Nick's Organic Farm has leased County land held for an eventual middle school in Montgomery County Maryland for the past 30 years. Farmers from all over the region rely on Nick's certified organic feed and seed for their organic operations.

On March 7, 2011, Nick and the community at large were given 2-weeks notice that the land would become Soccer Fields. There have still been no public hearings on this decision.

Many environmental, agriculture and local food organizations have banded together to ask Montgomery County's Executive, Ike Leggett, to form a Food Policy Council that will use Nick's Organic Farm as an anchor for agricultural and food education.

A Food Policy Council would fit perfectly with the County's current efforts to strengthen the local food system; including the Food Innovation Hub, and of course the nationally renowned Agricultural Reserve.

We have to act quickly, the County is moving ahead on soccer field construction on this site. Please join the organizations calling for a Food Education center at Brickyard Farm by signing the petition to Executive Leggett. The public should have a voice in the future of the Brickyard property...and the health of their local food system.

For more info as this issue evolves- visit the Brickyard Blog

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 25,000 signatures
    2. Join the call-in day on 11/16!

      Nick's Organic Farm's supporters are holding a public rally and petition delivery on Wednesday, 11/16. Out-of-towners can voice their support for this historic farm by joining Wednesday's call-in day! Just follow these simple instructions:

    3. Join Wednesday's Call-in Day to Save Nick's Organic Farm!

      A 31-year-old organic farm in Maryland's Montgomery County may not be around for much longer unless we act w. Earlier this year, County officials voted to turn Nick's Organic Farm, the County's only organic seed farm, into two private soccer fields....

    4. Only 2 Months to Save Nick's Organic Farm

      Unless the County Executive and Board of Education reverse their decision, farmer Nick Maravell will need to vacate his farmland in January. Will you voice your support for the conservation of this 31-year-old organic farm?

    5. Future of Nick's Organic Farm Hangs in the Balance

      Here's the latest on what's happening with Nick's Organic Farm, Montgomery County's *only* organic seed farm.

    6. Update: Nick's Farm License Extension Recused

      The County is saying that it will not consider Nick Maravell's request to extend his farming lease. Now is an imperative time for us all to express support for Nick's Organic Farm!

    7. Reached 20,000 signatures
    8. Dance to Support Nick's Organic Farm

      In the Montgomery County area? The coalition working to save Nick's Organic Farm is holding a dance on Friday, September 9th. Find more information here:

    9. Reached 17,500 signatures
    10. Please Submit Email Comments Too

      You can also submit a public comment via email by sending a note to this address: BrickyardRoad.SoccerFieldRFP@montgomerycountymd.gov. Please submit comments by TOMORROW, 9/1!

    11. Public Comment Period Ends 9/1!

      The County is accepting public comments on the proposed soccer fields only until September 1, 2011. Voice your support for Nick's Organic Farm now, before it's too late!

    12. Nick's Organic Farm Holds Fundraiser

      More than 100 people recently attended a fundraising event for the campaign to save Nick's Organic Farm. To learn more about the event and the role Nick's Organic Farm serves in the community, check out this article:

    13. Public Comment Period Closes 9/1

      The County is accepting comments on the proposed soccer fields until 9/1. Voice your support for Nick's Organic Farm now--before it's too late!

    14. Learn More About Nick's Organic Farm

      Want to learn more about the history of Nick's Organic Farm? Check out the farm's Web site here:

    15. Plenty of Soccer Fields

      Montgomery County already boasts more than 50 soccer fields. There's only one Nick's Organic Farm. Help save this invaluable source of organic seed and sustainable food education!

    16. Nick's Organic Farm on Patch.com

      Nick's Organic Farm got a shout-out on the Potomac Patch.com as one of last week's top stories

    17. Nick's Organic Farm on Patch.com

      New story on Patch.com: "Nick's Organic Farm Wages Campaign to Save Farm on Facebook"

    18. Reached 12,500 signatures
    19. 5 Community Members Meet with County Executive

      Five community members recently met with the County Executive, Ike Leggett. Find out more about how their meeting went at the Brickyard Coalition's Web site:

    20. Nick Maravell on "The Power Hour with Joyce Riley"

      Listen to Nick Maravell's interview on the radio show "The Power Hour with Joyce Riley" by copying and pasting this link into your browser: http://www.meenen.com/2011-07-13_nick_maravell_interview.mp3

    21. New Story on Nick's Organic Farm

      Care2 recently covered the plight of Nick's Organic Farm, which Montgomery County officials are threatening to turn into private soccer fields. Check out the piece here:

    22. 25,000 Signatures by 9/1

      Montgomery County is accepting public comments on the proposed soccer fields until September 1st. We've already got more than 11,000 signatures, and the momentum is going strong. Let's get to 25K before the 9/1 deadline for comments!

    23. Public Comment Period on Soccer Fields

      Montgomery County is accepting comments until September 1st on the proposal to build soccer fields on the site of Nick's Organic Farm. Make your voice heard about the need to save this invaluable organic seed farm!

    24. Reached 10,000 signatures
    25. Learn More About the Campaign

      Want to learn more about the campaign to save Nick's Organic Farm? Check out the campaign's Web site for background info and the latest news.


    Reasons for signing

    • Teresa Bruneau SAN DIEGO, CA
      • over 2 years ago

      land used for economic fuel and can be used as an educational tool for the Montgomery Board of EDUCATION... versus land used for playing a game... seems like a 'NO-BRAINER'

    • Michael Meehan BALTIMORE, MD
      • over 2 years ago

      I support Proactive change that makes sense. Too often are important sites turned into useless urban areas. Turning this site into a soccer field is the equivalent of turning it into a parking garage... Which very well could be the next step of this particular development. Maintain the organic fields and help fight useless development as well as GMO food groups.

    • Claire Rupnow MADISON, WI
      • over 2 years ago

      Soccer fields? Really? Does this world need more food awareness or mown fields-which there are already millions of-for kids to plod around on and chemical marker lines? I'm a soccer player, and I think that food awareness is more important than just one more measly field. There are a ton already!

      • over 2 years ago

      Enough soccer fields but real food no fake crap. No modifided foods either

    • Lisa Palomo SUPERIOR, AZ
      • over 2 years ago

      We need more organic healthy farming we have depleted enough it is time to revive replenish and grow!!!!!


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