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The Launch Event … what did you miss!

July 16, 2010
Well, if you didn’t make it to the launch of Growing Hearts and Minds  - you missed the downpour of rain for a start !!!  Yet as Dahlia Hedgecropper very wisely said  “It’s good for the gardens”
Yes it was very wet, but very wonderful. People ate cake, drank tea, chatted, laughed –  all huddled under the gazebo … at times it was a very cosy affair !
There were lots of smiling faces and considering the weather I was really happy with just how many people ventured out to find us in Northwood Park. During the lunchtime event, about 40 people came along. People came over and asked us what was happening.We explained what Growing Hearts and Minds is all about. People thought it was lovely and registered their interest for the project.

Photo of Dahlia Hedgecropper (c) Paul Nicklin.

We were very lucky to have our very own “Homegrown Darling of the Horticultural World” the expert gardening authoress and landscape designer Dahlia Hedgecropper, performing the ceremonial planting.

The planting marked the end of the Stepping Out project thanking Brighter Futures for their support and all the work by the participants, Dahlia then opened the Growing Hearts and Minds project,  to continue our work with Brighter Futures but also working much wider with the whole community.

Photos of Mr Diggit and his green fingered assistants giving it the thumbs up !  (c) Nicola Gater

All around us in the park we could see the lovely art work created by the participants in the Stepping Out project leading up to July.

  • About 40 canvas paintings ( covered in plastic …we anticiated the rain! )  hanging in an exhibition along the railings  - they looked amazing, blending in to the landscape and playing with nature.
  • Colourful ceramic tiles laid at the base of the tree
  • Wire butterflies in the topiary
  • The magical fake lake and bullrushes ….which looked amazing when the rain settled on top of it … with then koi carp under the water.
  • When the weather eased people sat on the chairs around the lake and made paper water lilies and  little willow and wire butterflies for the planting ceremony.
  • People shared their stories of the park , captured on video by Lisa, our visiting student from Germany.
  • The senior citzens opened the pavillion for us, so people could look at the old photos and use the loos – Thanks to Brenda and co… hope the dominoes game went well.
  • The big moment was when the rain faded and the planting ceremony took place with Dahlia Hedgecropper, her head gardener Mr Diggit and co – Derek Diggum and Kanea Diggit, accompanied by the jangling beats of the  Dancing Diggers.
  • Plus, at the end of it all everyone could take a little plant home to remember the day … sunflowers, lobelia, candy tufts and others

Thank you everyone.
A big thank you Councillor Kieran Clarke for braving the rain and to Dear Dear Dahlia Hedgecropper for gracing us with her presence…. I don’t think I can ever watch Gardeners World again with out giggling!

Quotes from some of those who came along ..
“Thank you for that, it was a really enjoyable hour and half” Sue
“That was fab. It looked great, everyone did really well, it looked ace” Zoe
“Well done everyone” Amanda

“It’s  diffferent. Thank you – I didn’t think I’d be taking a plant home with me today.” local lady walking her dog.

Here is to the future – and the beautiful things to come.
Growing Hearts and Minds will make sure we’ve all got  something to smile about .

Photo of a Stepping Out artist having a good ol’ laugh !  (c) Nicola Gater.

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