KANSAS CITY, Mo. (October 22, 2021) – Hallmark is proud to announce that volunteers grew, harvested and donated more than 1,000 pounds of fresh organic produce from our Crown Garden in 2021. The produce was donated to Ronald McDonald House Charities of Kansas City (RMHC-KC), Jewish Family Services and Harvesters, which provided it to families in need. After the garden remained closed in 2020 due to the pandemic, volunteers reopened it this year, even though most of them continued to work from home and had to drive to Hallmark headquarters at Crown Center to care for the garden.
“We are so impressed by the commitment of our Hallmark volunteers to open this garden so we could continue to give back to Kansas City families,” said Amy Winterscheidt, Hallmark’s community involvement director. “In a non-pandemic year, the Crown Garden produces about 1,000 pounds of produce, so to exceed this number during a pandemic is entirely due to the passion our volunteers have for this work.”
The Crown Garden opened in 2011 with 25 volunteers as a way for Hallmark to support RMHC-KC and the families that stay there. The garden is about 100 feet by 80 feet with 16 raised beds, fruit trees, grapes and berries. This year, there are five teams with six to eight volunteers per team. Four of the teams consist of Hallmark employees and the fifth is made up of employees and volunteers from RMHC-KC. Because the pandemic required RMHC-KC to provide individually packaged meals from commercial kitchens, Hallmark also donated much of the produce this season to Jewish Family Services and Harvesters.
The Crown Garden provides organic seasonal fruits and vegetables:
- Spring – potatoes (red and white), onions, broccoli, radishes, lettuce (several varieties), spinach, peas, carrots, beets, and a variety of other greens
- Summer – tomatoes, zucchini, yellow squash, peppers (several varieties), beans (several varieties), carrots, melons, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, peaches
- Fall – tomatoes, peppers, squash until frost, broccoli, carrots, beans, cauliflower, beets, kale, Swiss chard and spinach
- Winter – volunteers plant garlic to be harvested the following spring
“We are grateful for the support Hallmark and the Crown Garden has provided to RMHC-KC over the last 10 years,” said RMHC-KC CEO Tami Greenberg. “A home-cooked meal can often help a family find comfort during a difficult time. We are excited our volunteer meal groups have returned and are using the fruits and vegetables that are carefully grown, cared for and harvested by volunteers who care deeply about their community. This makes this gift from Hallmark even more special to us and our families.”
The Hallmark Crown Garden is sponsored by the Hallmark Corporate Foundation. It is set to close for the 2021 season on October 23rd.
About Ronald McDonald House Charities of Kansas City
The mission of Ronald McDonald House Charities of Kansas City is to reduce the burden of childhood illness on children and their families. We do this by keeping families close to their sick children when they are receiving medical care at Kansas City-area hospitals. On any given night, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Kansas City serves 87 families. Annually, it provides lodging to 8,200 families and supports more than 40,000 visits from inpatients and their families at its Ronald McDonald Family Room within Children’s Mercy Hospital. By providing a comfortable place to stay, warm meals and other supportive services, RMHC-KC works to keep families together during a difficult time. Families staying at RMHC-KC will experience a safe, peaceful environment so they can focus on what’s most important: their child’s health.
Hallmark Cards, Inc.
For more than 100 years, family-owned Hallmark Cards, Inc. has been dedicated to creating a more emotionally connected world. Headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri and employing 27,000 worldwide, the approximately $3.5 billion company operates a diversified portfolio of businesses. The Hallmark Global business sells greeting cards, gift wrap and related products in more than 30 languages with distribution in nearly 100 countries and 100,000 rooftops worldwide, including a network of company-owned and independently-owned Hallmark Gold Crown stores in five countries. Crayola® offers a wide range of art materials and creative play toys designed to spark children’s creativity around the globe. Crown Media Family Networks operates three linear cable channels, Hallmark Channel, Hallmark Movies & Mysteries, and Hallmark Drama, and Hallmark Movies Now, a subscription video on-demand streaming service. The company also features Hallmark Publishing, a leading publisher of uplifting eBooks, audiobooks, and print editions. Crown Center is a real estate development company that manages the 85-acre hotel, office, entertainment and residential campus surrounding Hallmark’s headquarters. For more information, visit Hallmark.com. Connect on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn and YouTube.