Library and Garden District


Library & Garden District Initiative Steering Committee


 Initiated by The Locals, the Library & Garden District Initiative aims to establish the neighborhood surrounding the library as a “Food Innovation District.” A food innovation district is a geographic concentration of food-oriented businesses, services, and community activities that promote a positive environment for local healthy food entrepreneurs, spur regional food system development, and increase access to local healthy food.


The Library & Garden District in Conway encompasses the area spanning from Meadowlake Road on the north and Hairston Street on the south sides and from Donaghey Avenue on the west and Washington Avenue on the east sides.

*Please Note:  Boundaries are set for research purposes and are not intended to exclude anyone from participating. You do not have to live within the boundaries of the district to get involved with the initiative.


  • Held the last Thursday of the month from 6pm-8pm at the Library.
  • 6-7pm - project updates
  • 7-8pm - work groups

Work Groups:


The focus of this group is to document relevant area data, gather and share best practices and success stories from other communities, identify local resources and opportunities, and investigate potential funding sources for the district initiative.

Subcommittee Members: Sarah Donaghy, Sandra Leyva, Zack McCannon, Joyce Hardin

Possible Activities (neither exhaustive nor obligatory, pulled from ideas generated at meetings held 1/25, 1/31, & 2/22):

  • Mapping – assets, stakeholders, food overlay, food pantries
  • Hendrix Capstone Project - Environmental Studies - Food Donations Research
  • UCA - Community needs assessment
  • Land Bank or Tax Foreclosure to find land that we can use for the initiative
  • Planned Unit Development zoning
  • Small Business Administration counseling
  • Grants and funding for improvements and projects
  • Financial resources – what is needed and what is possible at various levels


The focus of this group is to capitalize on existing assets with new or revitalized programs, to encourage and/or lead the establishment of new gardening and farming efforts in the district, and to increase availability of and access to local food and related business development opportunities.

Subcommittee Members: Sean Ott, Kim Doughty, Sarah Lane, Sandra Leyva

Possible Activities (neither exhaustive nor obligatory, pulled from ideas generated at meetings held 1/25, 1/31, & 2/22):


  • Community workdays to share labor (UFP, Bell Urban Farm, Hendrix Garden, ILS)
  • Food recovery and donation
  • Community Composting
  • Hendrix Garden – summer care


  • Garden Tool library at the library (1 year)
  • Community Garden with Individually Managed Plots, start with land at the library (1 year)
  • Learning Kitchen at the library (5 year)
  • Critical Mass bike rides, chicken tour, bee tour, garden tour (1 year)
  • Food trucks at the library during open mic nights (1 year)
  • Food Park (5 year)
  • Possible locations for new gardens or farms – empty lots on Tyler St. and Clifton St., land near Donaghey and Meadowlake, alongside the railroad, Gatlin Park,
  • Community access commercial kitchen or commercial kitchen food truck
  • Farmers Markets - help increase visibility for Downtown FM, establish year round FM, multiple FMs with different schedules
  • Cafe/Coffee Shop near the library
  • Vermiculture


The focus of this group is to advocate for and promote the district, to recruit new members within the district, and to develop new local and regional partners.

Subcommittee Members: Zack McCannon, Wendy Gant, Jill Acree

Possible Activities (neither exhaustive nor obligatory, pulled from ideas generated at meetings held 1/25, 1/31, & 2/22):

  • Infrastructure – Roundabout art, Bike lanes, Street lights, Sidewalks, Signage, Park, Pedestrian bridge over the railroad tracks on Davis St.
  • Possible Members & Partners – Residents and Businesses, Corner Pantry on Donaghey, Backpack Program, Conway School District, Conway Farm to School, Heifer International, New South CSA, City of Conway, Thompson Realty, Shelly and Statler Strange, Lowes, The Ride, Inside Yoga, Independent Living Services, Lot on Tyler (across from ILS group home—owned by someone at UCA), Design school (Little Rock?)/design or landscaping students, nutrition students, Conway Development Corporation, Conway Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Board/Conway Advocates for Bicycling, Arkansas Community Foundation Faulkner County Affiliate
  • Facebook, email updates, social media posts, etc.
  • Reach out to the library and garden district community members and individuals who live in the neighborhood
  • Door to door, flyers,

To get involved or get more information please contact Zack McCannon at [email protected]

To see the notes from the initial assessment meetings please visit



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