Kingfield’s bread and pizza oven serves as community hub

Kingfield neighbors gather in September at the pizza oven at 38th & Pleasant.
Kingfield neighbors gather in September at the pizza oven at 38th & Pleasant.

People who live in Kingfield have ample opportunities to meet their neighbors. They can tend community gardens, or visit the Sunday farmers market on Nicollet, or stroll through the neighborhood to hear musicians playing on porches. One newer addition to Kingfield is the outdoor bread and pizza oven, made with the help of Kingfield Neighborhood Association volunteers in the backyard of the Center for Performing Arts at 3754 Pleasant Ave.

Kingfield oven_1

Launched last year, the oven has become the focus for neighborhood gatherings the second weekend of each month until the snow flies (details are posted at kingfield.org). One popular pizza night in August featured an improv performance by six neighbors, including Theater of Public Policy members, Comedy Sportz cast members and Brave New Workshop alumni.

On another recent evening, Lisa Skrzeczkoski-Bzdusek sliced pizzas while Michael Huyck tended the oven and another volunteer rolled out dough provided by Butter Bakery Café. The night’s donations went to The Aliveness Project’s garden and food shelf, and Aliveness’ Dietitian and Wellness Program Director Arissa Anderson talked about the program with neighbors. Next year, she said, they’d like to further tailor the garden vegetables to serve as pizza ingredients.

Kingfield oven 3

The outdoor oven is one of several neighborhood projects on the property. A Boy Scout is recruiting volunteers to help build a woodshed for the oven. The Kingfield Pleasant Community Garden stands nearby, and Kingfield’s honeybee hives are overhead on the roof of the Center for Performing Arts.

The next get-together is a “pizza pARTy,” featuring performances by tenants of the Center for Performing Arts. The event is Friday Oct. 13, beginning at 5:30 p.m.

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