Volunteers spent a beautiful Tuesday morning cutting all the flowers in LocoLanding Adventure Park’s gardens and turning them into 160 fresh flower bouquets that were delivered to students at Out’ma School on Penticton Indian Band land.
It’s become an annual tradition to cut the flowers that grow all around the large park on Riverside Drive and create fresh flower bouquets to give out.
“It’s a beautiful way to end our season here at LocoLanding. Our gardener Ken does such a great job with our gardens. The bouquets are a great way to thank the community.”
This year, there were 14 volunteers making bouquets from the sunflowers, dahlias and carnations that grow throughout the park.
The dahlias visitors can enjoy during the summer are actually cared for over the winter at Stirling’s parents’ home and then planted in spring.
The group expected to make upwards of 160 bouquets with any extras going to seniors’ homes in Penticton.
“We started last year for Every Child Matters and we are so excited to deliver the bouquets to the students again,” Stirling said on Tuesday.
Out’ma Sqilx’w Cultural School serves students from Junior Kindergarten to grade eight and has around 90 students at 28 staff.
“The students can take the flowers home to their families, to their grammas, moms and aunties,” said Stirling. “Last year seeing the students’ faces and seeing them carefully choose which bouquet they wanted, it was just beautiful.”
“This is the second year we’ve brought the bouquets to Out’ma to show our love and respect,” she said.
Stirling and a strong contingent of volunteers and friends have come together to cut and make fresh flower bouquets for six years now. The vases are milkshake jars from one of Stirling’s other business Cherry on Top Shake Shop.
One volunteer commented that it’s one of their favourite experiences and they love that each bouquet is hand-made and unique.
“We get to use our creative side,” one volunteer said.
It all started in 2014 when Stirling’s best friend Tracey Badger asked to cut some fresh flowers from LocoLanding for her mother.
“My father had passed away and I wanted to do something for my mom on their wedding anniversary. Diana and I got to talking and I said ‘we should do something for the seniors in our community.’”
Next thing they knew, they came up with the idea of cutting all the flowers at the end of the LocoLanding season and giving bouquets to local seniors and places like hospices.
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