On Saturday July 20, over 300 people visited Glen Villa to view the garden and walk Timelines, the 3km trail that opened for the first time.
The day was exhausting because of the heat and humidity but it was exhilarating to welcome so many people to the garden and to hear how much they enjoyed the experience. Many visitors commented on how well organized we were. For this, I have to thank the 24 volunteers who worked at the registration desk and at various spots around the garden.
Of all the volunteers, I want to send a particular thank you to John Hay. John made the signs that led people through the garden so easily. He worked at the registration desk all day long, coming early to set up and staying late to shut down. Along with Jacques Gosselin and Ken Kelso, his role in the day was essential.
Special thanks as well go to Catherine Walker and Gary Ross who volunteered to add music to the occasion. Catherine played the cello in the morning and Gary joined her on cello in the afternoon.
Before the gates opened at 9am, I took a quick ride through Timelines to make sure everything was looking good. I started at In Transit/En Route, where walkers encounter a series of questions.
In the Seigneurie field, planted this year for the first time in long narrow strips to reflect the system of land division used along the St. Lawrence River, the canola was in full bloom and the flax just beginning.
Graham Moodie snapped a photo of me in the gaitor. Graham helped in 2016 and 2017 when we opened the garden and returned this year for the third time, one of many volunteers who have done this. He spent the day walking through the garden, making sure other volunteers and visitors were okay, and on his rounds, he took the photos that follow.
I spent the day on a covered terrace near the house, talking to the visitors and enjoying their company.
We opened the garden as a fund-raiser for the Massawippi Foundation and on those grounds alone, it was a huge success, raising almost $10,000 to support the Foundation’s over-arching goal: A Green and Prosperous Massawippi Valley.
Thank you to the journalists and garden lovers who spread the news — your publicity was vital to the success of the day. And what a day it was — unusually hot and humid. But despite the weather, people came. So to each and everyone one of you, visitors and volunteers alike, bravo!
We look to welcoming you again in 2021.