BETHEL — Western Mountains Senior College To Your Health will sponsor two programs aimed to help one learn more about “Good Food: Buying and Growing Locally.” The programs will be held at the Bethel Congregational Church, Church Street.

Barbara Murphy, extension educator, University of Maine Cooperative Extension, Oxford County Office, will present “10 Steps for Growing Your Healthy Food” from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Wednesday, April 14. The program is expected to be helpful to new as well as seasoned gardeners. Murphy said, “Successful vegetable gardening isn’t necessarily easy or intuitive. Come and learn some tried and true techniques that will help you achieve a bountiful harvest.”

A follow-up program will be held from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Thursday, April 22.

Cynthia Flores of Middle Intervale Farms will bring the benefits of her 10 years gardening experience to the program. She will discuss community supported agriculture, what it is, how it works and who can participate; who will take part in the 2010 farmers markets, when they will open and the locations; and the process for obtaining senior farm shares, sponsored by the State of Maine and the Maine Department of Agriculture.

Carole Duplessis, Maine master florist, Pooh Corner Farms, will discuss the container gardening method of growing vegetables for those who do not have the time or space for a full garden. Duplessis has a bachelor of science degree in plant and soil science from the University of Vermont. She has been in business for 25 years growing seasonal plants, bedding plants, hanging baskets, herbs and vegetables.

Jackie Cressy, Maine master gardener, will talk about the philosophy of buying locally and healthy. She will also cover what to look out for in the grocery stores, food co-ops, and many additional resources. She said she “loves real food – reading about it, growing it, preparing it and sharing it.” Cressy has a masters degree in environmental studies and serves on the Bethel Conservation Commission.

All programs are sponsored as a community service by WMSC To Your Health with the collaboration of the Bethel Family Health Center and SAD 44 Continuing Education. The programs are open to the public and admission is free.

For more information, call Rosabelle Tifft at 824-2053.

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