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Sunnyslope to build community garden

PHOENIX — Dean Howard said he grew up with the Sunnyslope stigma.

“Obviously, some parts of Sunnyslope have deteriorated and there are some great parts of Sunnyslope.”

One of the best, Howard said, is Mountain View Park on Seventh Avenue north of Dunlap. That’s where the Sunnyslope Village Alliance hopes to grow neighborhood pride with the help of a community garden.

“The grass, the back of the mountain, the backdrop is just unbelievable,” he said.

Thanks to a $66,000 grant, the group will start developing plots in Mountain View Park next week. Howard said it plans to have cooking and gardening classes and hopes to get schoolchildren and local restaurants involved.

“Back when I was a kid, we used to come out here for Easter, for all the events throughout the year. That’s gone. It shouldn’t be,” he said. “There’s a way to spur that growth, that activity, that involvement.”

The Sunnyslope Village Alliance is holding a volunteer day of service and celebration on Sept. 6 to showcase the garden plots and kick off planting. You can get more information by calling (602) 944-0941 or emailing