News from the institute

June 13 KEEPING WATCH event will focus on urban farming

Is “urban agriculture” possible in a city like Charlotte? Can backyard chickens and rooftop gardens solve urban hunger?

The public will get a chance to consider those questions – and sip martinis crafted from local ingredients – at the June 13 KEEPING WATCH Clean Martini Screens. The event, free and open to the public, will be 6-9 p.m. at UNC Charlotte Center City.

The evening includes a showing of Growing Cities, a documentary detailing the urban farming successes across the United States. Short clips from agricultural eco-artist Jean Paul Ganem will also be part of the event.

Mary Newsom of the UNC Charlotte Urban Institute and PlanCharlotte.org will moderate a panel discussion about bringing food production back to the heart of the city. Panelists will be:

Clean Martini Screens presents eco-film screenings and clean martinis made by local distilleries from local products, compliments of Slow Food Charlotte, as well as light, locally sourced hors d’oeuvres. Clean Martini Screens are programmed in conjunction with Sustain Me Baby, an exhibition in the Projective Eye Gallery at UNC Charlotte Center City.

The film event is part of KEEPING WATCH, a three-year initiative of the UNC Charlotte Urban Institute in partnership with the UNC Charlotte College of Arts + Architecture, designed to engage the public in issues about the region’s natural environment. With the help of area historians, writers, artists and scientists, KEEPING WATCH is exploring the region’s reliance on plastics for 2014, the health of its creeks for 2015, and air and trees for 2016.

For more information go to http://www.keepingwatch.org