This Week: Sacramento working on ordinance to allow urban farms

Cities around the country have embraced urban farms to combat blight and make more fresh fruits and vegetables available in neighborhoods with few grocery stores.

The city of Sacramento has been working on its own ordinance to allow urban farming. It will go to the City Council for publication Tuesday, and will be up for a vote March 24.

As proposed by the city’s staff, the ordinance would allow urban farms on vacant land in residential, commercial, industrial and manufacturing zones throughout the city. It also would allow urban farm stands, although in residential neighborhoods stand hours would be restricted to Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Some of the city’s leading chefs joined the push for the ordinance, which also would create a citywide agricultural incentive zone where landowners could receive property tax breaks in return for converting vacant lots to minifarms.

In justifying the tax incentives, which could add up to $6,127 an acre each year, city staff members cited a New York City study that found community gardens boosted the values of nearby properties.

Mary Lynne Vellinga

Auburn park safety to be discussed at meeting

A community meeting will be held this evening to discuss the safety of parks in the city of Auburn. The meeting, sponsored by the city, Auburn Police Department and the Auburn Recreation District, is intended to let the public know what is occurring in their parks and what local agencies are doing to help make the parks safer, according to a Police Department news release. Topics will include background information on parks in the area, with an emphasis on Overlook Park, including the skate park, Recreation Park, the School Preserve Park and Railhead Park. The meeting will begin at 6 p.m. in the City Hall Council Chambers, 1225 Lincoln Way, Auburn.

Info: John Ruffcorn, Auburn Police Department, (530) 823-4237, jruffcorn@auburn.ca.gov, or Kahl Muscott, Auburn Recreation District, (530) 885-0611, ext. 102, kmuscott@auburnrec.com.

Shaving heads to raise funds for cancer research

Keaton Raphael Memorial’s St. Baldrick’s Head Shaving Campaign reaches de Vere’s Irish Pub today at 1521 L St. in Sacramento. From 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., donators can get their head shaved to benefit cancer research.

Info: www.getbald.com or (888) 899-2253

California Agriculture Day celebration Wednesday

California Agriculture Day will be celebrated from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday on the west steps of the state Capitol. The outdoor event will feature tractors, livestock, flowers, food samples, charros and more. This year’s theme is “California Agriculture: Breaking New Ground.”

Info: www.cdfa.ca.gov/agday/

Equitable school culture topic of district gathering

Students, their families and community members in the San Juan Unified School District are invited to a Thursday session on “Restoring Equitable School Culture and Climate” on campuses. The meeting at 6:30 p.m. in Arden Middle School’s multipurpose room, 1640 Watt Ave., Sacramento, is part of a continuing effort by the district’s Equity Focus Group, a panel of parents, teachers and administrators, to discuss school culture and remedy disparities among ethnic groups.

Info: www.sanjuan.edu/equity

Disney archivist to appear at Old Sacramento shop

Stage Nine will host a book signing and autograph session this weekend with Dave Smith, creator of the Disney Archives and author of several books. Smith, who joined Disney in 1970, documented all the items in Walt Disney’s personal office. He will appear from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the shop, 200 K St. in Old Sacramento.

Info: www.stagenine.com/

Benefit show for the Mustard Seed School

Performers Majickat, Joe Kye and Adrian Bellue are scheduled to play Saturday at The Mustard Seed Benefit Show in Sacramento. Admission for the fundraiser, to benefit the Mustard Seed School, will include a barbecue dinner. The event will begin at 6:30 p.m. at Old Ironsides, 1901 10th St.

Info: http://theoldironsides.com/calendar/