About the Community Garden



Calvary UMC 200 Turner Rd Middletown
Portsmouth UMC 2732 East Main Rd Portsmouth
St Paul's UMC 12 Marlborough St Newport

Every Wednesday - Mornings 10-11:30AM (all locations)
Evenings 5-6:30PM (St Paul's only)
Every Saturday - 10-11:30 AM (at the Garden~ Calvary UMC)

  The United Methodist Community Gardens is organized and sponsored by the three United Methodist Churches on Aquidneck Island. It is located on the grounds of the Calvary UMC and staffed by volunteers from the community and other local churches. There is no restriction as to religion, race or ethnicity.  The garden had been in existence since 1996 under the leadership of retired Bishop Dale White having as their primary goal supplying fresh vegetables to the needy.


In 2010 under the leadership of Linda Wood, the garden has supplied over 2,500 lbs of fresh vegetables to the Martin Luther King Center, Lucy’s Hearth, McKinney Shelter, Florence Gray Center, Edward King House and five soup kitchens in Newport County plus individual needs. In addition, 115 vases of cut flowers were delivered to local nursing homes and shut-ins.

 There are weekly programs for the John Clarke Nursing Facility, Child and Family Service and the Early Childhood Day Treatment Center.

 The community garden is funded solely by donations and has received grants from the van Buren Charitable Foundation, Aquidneck Land Trust, DEM Farm Viability Grant, Alice P. Mayer Fund and the NE Grassroots Environmental Fund.


 The construction of a High Tunnel Hoop House to plant and harvest winter crops with no heat or water is completed. This is a new concept of gardening that has been successful in Maine and this is the first time it has been tried in Rhode Island. We have been harvesting in October and November from the hoop house and it has been very successful.  Hopefully we will be able to feed our neighbors in need through the winter.


The greenhouse is 14’ by 96’.  It has 36 beds planted with salad greens, spinach, chard, beets, carrots, kale, radishes and turnip.


Students from Salve Regina University and the East Bay Met High School, in Newport, will be pioneering this project with us. They have been working since the end of September planting and harvesting in the greenhouse.

A new double sided sign will be added to the garden by the end of   November with the listed affiliated organizations on the bottom.

we are very excited about our mission, faithfully serving others, and putting up this sign will be another opportunity to bring the awareness to our neighbors of all the wonderful gifts that we give and receive from working in the Methodist Community Gardens.


 St. Paul’s UMC Soup Kitchen


For more than 20 years, PUMC has participated in one of the many Newport Soup Kitchens. Every other month, our congregation is asked to donate casseroles, salad makings, bread, desserts and drinks for us to serve in the St. Paul’s UMC Soup Kitchen, Usually we serve 70-80 people with many receiving seconds and even thirds. Over the years, we have made friends with many of our clients. In addition, we also bring gently used coats, mittens, and hats to people who might not have these essential items.



Brown Bag Sunday

Brown Bag Sunday is a combined project with the Sunday school and the Missions Committee. The Sunday school children decorate brown paper bags and distribute them to the congregation. The bags are returned full, on the Sunday prior to Thanksgiving. At that time, the Missions Committee sorts and distributes the food. This year, 11 families received our gifts of love to them at Thanksgiving plus 13 brown bags were given to Martin Luther King Center.  We also gave $35 gift card to go for the perishable items such as turkeys and fresh produce.  It is a thrill to see the faces of the recipients if you are lucky enough to be the one to deliver the goods.  Names and addresses are kept confidential.




Rope of Love

In October, our church participates in the Rope of Love project. One of our members contacts the local schools to determine how many coats are needed. Tags may be selected by members of the congregation, giving the size and sex of the child. Coats are returned and hung on our rope of love that is hung from the railings leading into our sanctuary. This year, 36 coats were distributed to needy children in Portsmouth.



Giving Tree

At Christmas, needy families receive wrapped gifts to brighten their holiday season.  On the first Sunday in Advent, a Christmas tree is set up decorated with brightly colored tags, listing the wishes of several needy families. Church members select a tag and purchase and wrap the requested gift and return it to church the middle of December, so that they can be delivered before Christmas.



Thanksgiving Dinner

Started in 2008, the church hosts a Thanksgiving dinner for anyone in the community. In addition to a sumptuous Thanksgiving dinner with all the trimmings, music is provided to enhance the day’s activities. Our church family receives many contributions from the community to assist with this project of providing Thanksgiving dinner for those who might otherwise be alone, or unable to make a dinner for themselves.



Red Cross

Red Cross Blood Drives are scheduled four times a year on Sundays at PUMC; thereby giving are worshippers the opportunity to give the gift of life after worship.



Flower Ministry

Each week during the summer, volunteers deliver flowers to those who are hospitalized or in a care center. These flowers are grown in the Community Garden and arranged by some of the garden’s volunteers. This ongoing ministry brightens the lives of those who receive these special deliveries.