Earlier this year, the Greenhouse Club at Lucile Erwin Middle School received a $3300 grant from the Colorado Garden Foundation. The club was represented by Suzanne Penner and Denise Lucchesi. The grant was received at the awards ceremony during the Colorado Home and Garden Show. The Club will use the funds to rebuild the greenhouses, which are about 17 years old and have been heavily damaged by the sun and hail.
The Lucile Erwin Greenhouse Club started in 2016 as a Wildcat Pride class. When Mrs. Lucchesi discovered the greenhouses, she saw an opportunity for students to have a different experience outside of the classroom. Through the project, students learn what it takes to run a business. They plan what seeds to grow by using information from the previous year’s sales.
They also learn how to plant and water the seeds and when to transplant the seedlings. After several months of nurturing the plants, students organize a sale which helps to fund the next year’s Greenhouse Club. They develop and create advertising, which in the past was aimed at staff and parents. This year, they expanded their outreach beyond the school community. They plan on increasing their market to include more of the Loveland area.
The Greenhouse Club was changed to an after-school club when the Wildcat Pride classes changed. Mrs. Lucchesi and her husband, Jim, who is a volunteer for the club, ran it until this year, as she is retiring from teaching. The Greenhouse Club will be run by Suzanne Penner, Rachel Woods and Eric Schulte and will continue to operate as an after-school club.