US (IA): Tipton schools breaks ground on greenhouse

 It’s been a long time coming, but dirt is finally moving at Tipton High School for a new greenhouse. A patch of the ripped-up parking lot on the north side of the high school will be a new 3,000 square-foot greenhouse by the time students start school in the fall.

Ground officially broke Tuesday morning with a brief ceremony featuring school officials, donors, and students. The project has been as much a community project as it has been a school one. Tuesday’s groundbreaking was no different, as much of the time was dedicated to hearing from those in the Tipton community who helped make the project possible.

That included Aaron Conaway, president of Total Seed Production. The local seed company has the naming rights of the greenhouse, to formally be called Total Seed Production Greenhouse. Total Seed is one of 78 donors who contributed more than $502,000 toward the project. The Tipton County Foundation gave a $150,000 grant for the greenhouse, in addition to the fundraising campaign.

“It was really breathtaking to get the city, the county to come together,” Conaway said. “The support we received was beyond our expectations.” Friends of Tipton Future Farmers of American and its president, Jeff Rodibaugh, led the fundraising effort. Rodibaugh said they expect more donations to roll in as the project progresses.

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