South Madison

Since 2008, Slow Food-UW has encouraged students to trek down South Park Street to meet local farmers, interact with community members, and visit the restaurants and businesses along the way. This campus-community partnership promotes a “two-way street” of learning between UW-Madison and South Madison.

This branch began at the South Madison Farmers’ Market when we asked market manager Robert Pierce, “What can Slow Food-UW do to help you?” Robert immediately asked us to engage with youth and teach them how to cook. From there, we sought to aid preexisting organizations and community-led efforts in promoting “good, clean, and fair” food through cooking, gardening, and other food-based programming. We have expanded our reach over the years and now work with the Boys and Girls Club, Odyssey Program, Wisconsin Institute for Discovery, and Goodman Library.

Our South Madison programs aim to empower individuals and communities to reclaim their relationship with food. We emphasize that food is a right for all, and work to address barriers to food that includes and surpasses access. Some of these barriers may involve knowledge of healthy foods, cooking skills, or comfort with novel foods. Each of our programs actively work to promote a local food system that is both inclusive and just.

If you’re interested in learning more about the urban agricultural initiatives in the diverse communities just south of campus, join our efforts and shoot us an email at

Badger Rock Garden Class

Badger Rock Middle School is a charter school located in South Madison. The Badger Rock garden class is one of many progressive environmental based programs that promotes hands-on learning in the garden and kitchen. The garden class is run by Sarah Karlson, among many other wonderful staff, that engages students through activities in their greenhouse, garden and even bee keeping! They grow a variety of herbs, fruits, and vegetables. In the kitchen, students prepare a variety of dishes varying from homemade pasta to sushi. Slow Food interns have the opportunity to aid the teaching staff in helping out with the garden class by showing the kids proper cooking methods, teaching students how to run and benefit from a garden, and making connections with students. For this position, access to a car is not required but highly recommended, however, if you are interested in the position please do not be deterred by this information.

Snacks on the Move

Get Movin’ is a fitness class geared towards elders as a part of an Alzheimer’s prevention program within the Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center. Each week, interns prepare a healthy snack, educate participants on its nutritional benefits, and participate in the exercise class alongside members. Get Movin’ meets at the UW South Madison Partnership Office and on Zoom every Tuesday and Thursday.

Snacks with Scientists

The Snacks with Scientists team coordinates activities for groups of kids at local community centers. The WID (Wisconsin Institute for Discovery) connects Slow Food interns and provides resources to foster connections with children at local community centers. Interns teach science-related activities that are fun and interactive. After the activity, the interns also provide the kids with a healthy snack. Overall, we encourage the kids to be curious about science and food they are consuming!

Lincoln Elementary

South Madison has developed a 5 week curriculum to teach elementary students about food and nutrition. This project is in collaboration with REAP Food Group, a local grassroots organization committed to local food education, that has helped provided us with resources. Each week there is a different topic that is introduced to the kids, along with an activity to apply their knowledge, and sharing of a snack related to the lesson.

South Madison Program Co-Directors

Julia Rosendahl and Alexandria Bostley

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