First Lady Jane Beshear's Communications Office
First Lady Beshear visits Governor’s Garden site in Florence, donates produce to Parish Kitchen

Press Release Date:  Tuesday, August 10, 2010  
Contact Information:  Elizabeth Roach

FLORENCE, Ky. – Today First Lady Jane Beshear joined students from the Campbell County High School FFA Chapter and Jonathan Miller, secretary of the Finance and Administration Cabinet, to harvest vegetables at the Governor’s Garden, located on the grounds of a public rest area off of Interstate 75 in Florence, Ky.

“I am thrilled to announce the expansion of the Governor’s Garden to Florence,” said Mrs. Beshear. “We hope that the garden will help Kentuckians recognize the health benefits of locally grown produce. Providing a portion of the yield to Parish Kitchen will allow the needy, who are rarely able to taste fresh vegetables, to have access to nutritious meals.”

The Governor’s Garden is a part of the Beshear administration’s Green Team initiative, which strives to promote sustainability, energy efficiency and environmental preservation.

Mrs. Beshear personally delivered some of the vegetables picked today to Parish Kitchen, where she also helped serve lunch.  Most of the produce grown in the Florence Governor’s Garden will be donated to Parish Kitchen, a free meal program in Covington that serves an average of 200 meals daily, 365 days a year, to guests who are homeless or living in poverty.

“It is our privilege and pleasure to welcome First Lady Jane Beshear to Parish Kitchen,” said Molly Navin, operations director of the Parish Kitchen. “We are committed to serving our guests only what we would serve our families - a good, healthy meal. The Governor’s Garden is truly a gift for which we are deeply grateful, and we are elated to be working with Governor and Mrs. Beshear to alleviate hunger in our community and to reach out to those who are disenfranchised by poverty, disabilities and loneliness.”

The Parish Kitchen has served a full, free meal daily to the hungry for 35 years. The kitchen is supported almost entirely by private donations from churches, organizations, businesses and individuals.

Mrs. Beshear created the first Governor’s Garden in July 2009, on the grounds of Berry Hill Mansion in Frankfort.  In addition to the garden in Florence, the Governor’s Garden initiative has expanded to five other locations throughout the state in 2010: Hazard, Florence, Paducah, Bowling Green, Louisville (on the grounds of the Kentucky Exposition Center) and Lexington at the Kentucky Horse Park.

“As a former educator, Mrs. Beshear likes to lead by example,” said Jonathan Miller, secretary of the Finance and Administration Cabinet, “and through the Governor’s Garden initiative, she will travel to all corners of the state teaching Kentuckians how to live more sustainable, environmentally friendly lifestyles.”

For more information about the Governor’s Garden and the Green Team, visit

For more information on the Parish Kitchen and information to make a donation, contact Molly Navin at 859-581-7745 or email