Island School at Gathering Ground

This article first appeared in the Washington Island Observer

By Jessica Dennis

On Wednesday, May 29, students in grades 3-12 had the opportunity to give back to our community through a service learning day at Gathering Grounds with Russell and Alessandra Rolffs. Through a race in the vineyard, students picked up pruned pieces of the grapevines; saving the Gathering Ground team from countless hours of work.

In addition to cleaning up the grounds, all students planted blueberries; about 40 blueberry plants were planted. Grades 8-12 also had the opportunity to receive a lesson in grafting from Russell Rolffs and Casey Dahl. 8-12 grade students were able to assist in grafting pieces of grape cuttings onto the existing ‘trunks’ in the vineyard. The students were able to insert the cuttings, wrap them in rubber bands to keep the cuttings in place, and wrap parafilm around the cutting site to keep in the moisture. It was a rewarding day with beautiful weather!

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