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Archives for October 6, 2015

Updates proposed for Firestone Park in Columbiana

To celebrate the 80th anniversary of the Firestone Recreational Park in Columbiana, a non-profit organization is proposing a face lift.

Monday, The Restoration and Beautification Committee of Columbiana presented their plans to the public. The plans include a variety of improvements:

  • Restored and improved Mirror Lake
  • Historic walkways to replace brick gutters
  • Updated landscaping
  • Tot lots at all pavilions
  • New children’s playground
  • Dog Park
  • New Grand Entrance
  • Sand Volleyball, bocce, horseshoes, corn hole, or shuffle board at pavilions
  • Improved/new tennis, basketball and pickle ball courts
  • New surface for the oval track
  • New roundabouts, roadways, and parking for traffic control
  • Amphitheater

“The community has put a lot into the park but it’s just old enough now that we need to go back and look at the landscaping again and bring it up to date, and think about the traffic patterns and the safety. We are very concerned about safety and accessibility for people with disabilities,” said Pat Tingle, Co-President of  the Restoration and Beautification Committee of Columbiana.

Tingle says at this point the ideas are only being proposed. Implementation may take several years and require funding through donations, grants and a possible levy.

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Made in FredVA contest finalists selected

Posted: Tuesday, October 6, 2015 12:00 am

Made in FredVA contest finalists selected



The four finalists have been picked for the third-annual Made in FredVA business startup competition on Oct. 29 in Fredericksburg.

Dogwood Lawns, Repo-Rocks, Twila Co., and Up | FXBG will pitch their business ideas to a panel of local entrepreneurs beginning at 6 p.m. at the Inn at the Old Silk Mill, 1707 Princess Anne St.

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Tuesday, October 6, 2015 12:00 am.

| Tags:

Made In Fredva,


Dogwood Lawns,

Repo Rocks,

Twila Co.,

And Up | Fxbg,

The Old Silk Mill

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Local community things to know and do for the Pasadena area for October 6, 2015 – The Pasadena Star


Sierra Club to meet

Long-time Sierra Club member and geologist Bill Neill will present “The Geology of Southern California – the forces that shaped and continue to shape our landscape” at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Eaton Canyon Nature Center.

His presentation will provide an overview of the various sedimentary and volcanic rocks of our region’s coastal and mountain areas, and their influence on native plant communities.

Information concerning the Sierra Club Pasadena Group’s hikes, outings and conservation activities will be available at the meeting.

Newcomers are always welcome. The center is at 1750 N. Altadena Drive, Pasadena.

For information, contact the group membership chair, Elizabeth Pomeroy, at 626-791-7660.


Library Friends’ group holds book sale

The Friends of the South Pasadena Public Library is holding a ‘Very Special Blowout Book Sale’ from 3 to 7 p.m. Thursday on the El Centro Street side of Library Park.

Offered for the first time will be about 4,000 books donated by the estate of Stephen Rice, from science fiction, scary tales, mythology, natural history and other subjects, all for $1 each. The donation consisted of more than the 4,000 books.

The Friends Bookstore staff and volunteers sorted through the boxes and selected dozens of books for the Library for its circulating collection, as well as its developing the Ray Bradbury Conference Room Special Collection. These additions include 20 rare Ray Bradbury titles.

The park is near 1115 El Centro St. For more information, call 626-403-7340.


High school holds college fair

Don Bosco Technical Institute will host its ninth annual college fair for high school students and their parents from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the school, 1151 San Gabriel Blvd., Rosemead.

The event will include representatives from more than 80 universities and colleges nationwide, breakout sessions on financial aid, standardized testing and the Educational Opportunity Program. The event is free. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. with gourmet food trucks available until 8 p.m.

For more information or to register, go to or contact Assistant Principal Robert Currie at or 626-940-2013.


Water-wise garden to be unveiled

The Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District and Duarte will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony at 6 p.m. Thursday for the completion of a new water-wise landscape demonstration garden on the corner of Buena Vista Street and Village Road on the City of Hope campus.

After the ceremony, guests will be able to tour the garden area and enjoy light refreshments. Guests are encouraged to wear comfortable shoes.

The garden is part of Upper District’s Sustainable Landscape Demonstration Program, a community-based conservation program that provides grant funding to cities as a means to convert high-water use landscapes to low-impact, drought tolerant gardens.

For this project, Upper District partnered with the local water retailer, California American Water, who provided additional grant funding for the project. Additionally, the project was supported through the partnership of City of Hope, where the garden is located, and Burrtec Services.

The approximately 2,000 square foot demonstration project was constructed by EcoTech Services, Inc. and showcases a variety of California native plants, including sage, toyon, yucca and other colorful plants.

For more information on removing grass turf, drought tolerant landscaping ideas, and other water-saving tips, visit and

— From staff reports

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Brown lawn turns into labyrinth in healing garden

Local News

Dairy Mart on East Reynolds Road is robbed

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Planting natives is subject of Backyard Assn. meeting

Georgia’s native plants have withstood the test of time.

“Before the development of the nursery industry, dogwoods, redbuds and other native plants with nice flowers and foliage were the only choice for settlers to plant in their yards,” said Allen Summerlin, a Coweta County Master Gardener Extension Volunteer. “And today, we are still planting these native plants because they are adapted to our Georgia climate.”

Landscape Architect Nancy S. Beckemeyer of Penfield will discuss the many benefits of planting natives in Georgia gardens at the Oct. 13 meeting of the Coweta County Master Gardener Extension Volunteers. Her talk, “Landscape Design with Native Plants,” is free and open to the public.

Beckemeyer’s talk begins at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 13, at UGA Extension – Coweta County, 255 Pine Road, Newnan. Free. You need not register in advance to attend, but call 770-254-2620 or email to register for door prizes.

Beckemeyer is president of Autumn Ridge Inc., a landscape architecture firm. Her 30 years of experience includes projects ranging from large estates to intimate backyards, each design customized for her clients.   

A popular speaker for numerous groups including the UGA cooperative extension, Garden Clubs of Georgia, Southeast Greenhouse conference and the Southern Nursery Association, she is contributing author to the book, “Gardening Around Atlanta”; advisor for “Step-by-Step Landscaping” by Better Homes and Gardens.

Georgia Director of the International Society of Arboriculture Southern Chapter, Beckemeyer developed the Landscape Horticulture Certificate programs at Kennesaw University, Clayton State University and DeKalb Tech. She was the 2014 Delegate on the Executive Board of Georgia Arborist Association and was honored with the Dr. Kim Coder Award for leadership in the arboriculture Industry for meritorious contribution and service in arboriculture.

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Campus pollinator gardens: Pretty and problem-solving

The recent addition of specialized landscaping on the University of Colorado Boulder campus has solved some logistical matters. And pollinator species — from butterflies to bees — seem to be buzzing their approval.

The project, approved by the CU Student Government and administered by the CU Environmental Center in collaboration with CU-Boulder Facilities Management, was most recently expanded to an area near Colorado Avenue along 28th Street in Boulder. The landscaping includes such perennials as lavender, catmint and yarrow — plants that can tolerate rough roadside conditions and heavy heat with minimal water.

Most importantly, though, the plants benefit pollinators, which are in decline.

“The Environmental Center has worked to support CU-Boulder operational initiatives to reduce water use and continue pesticide-free practices,” said Marianne Moulton Martin, associate director of the E-Center. “This project supports these sustainability goals plus creates a habitat for pollinator species and educates the campus community about the importance of pollinators.”

Martin says educational signage is slated for installation this fall near the landscaping including at the first location, which was planted in the summer of 2014. The first garden is located along Broadway between Regent Drive and 18th Street in Boulder, a heavy pedestrian area.

“Pollinator species were immediately attracted to the Broadway landscape and many regular commuters along that stretch took notice of the streetscape improvement,” said Martin. “Once we get the interpretive signs installed, we hope more pedestrians will understand the purpose and notice the activity.”

The specialized landscaping across campus, which totals about 10,000 square feet of land, is pollinator-friendly because it incorporates a wide variety of plants that bloom from early spring to late fall; is arranged in dense clumps of species rather than many single species; includes native plants or those that are well-suited to the Front Range; and requires no chemical treatment.

Other pollinator species include hummingbirds and bats, according to the city of Boulder, which currently is celebrating Pollinator Appreciation Month.

Involved in the CU-Boulder project have been students from the E-Center as well as an Environmental Studies permaculture class last May. Campus landscape architect Richelle Reilly of Planning, Design and Construction designed the gardens in concert with Outdoor Services with support for the sourcing of neonicotinoid-free plants. Neonicotinoids are a relatively new class of systemic insecticides that potentially pose threats to pollinators.

The project is funded by Sustainable CU, an improvement initiative passed by students in 2005 that allocates a portion of student fees to campus projects that incorporate renewable energy, energy efficiency, recycling and waste reduction and other innovations that reduce CU-Boulder’s footprint on the environment.

CU-Boulder’s pollinator-friendly landscaping will be included in the optional sustainability tour during Family Weekend on campus Oct. 1-4. It also will be featured during the Western Apicultural Society conference in Boulder Oct. 1-3.

For more information about the pollinator gardens visit

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Design Recipes: Ways to extend outdoor entertaining into fall

Local News

Paso Robles Children’s Museum to unveil new outdoor play area

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Camp Oakhurst has new sensory garden thanks to local business

Thanks to the generosity of a local landscape design firm, Camp Oakhurst has a new “sensory garden” to support the therapeutic recreation program at this year-round residential camp for adults and children with disabilities. The garden, featuring an irrigation system and raised planting beds for herbs, flowers, and vegetables, was designed and constructed by William J. McDaid and his staff from Twin Resources, Eatontown.

McDaid’s crew spent approximately 3 weeks constructing the garden in a strategically placed visible plot on the 15-acre campus. The garden’s design enables participants to access the beds from a seated or standing position. Campers using wheelchairs are able to perform all activities related to a successful crop cycle including cultivating, planting, weeding, watering, and harvesting. The pavers surrounding the beds not only make the garden visually appealing but provide a firm, barrier free surface for wheelchair accessibility. All materials, including the pavers, benches, and trellises were donated by McDaid’s firm.

According to McDaid, this project represents his firm’s commitment to community service and innovative design. “It’s just nice to be able to make a difference in someone’s life.” explained McDaid. He added, “I have an amazing team who finds enjoyment in giving back to the community”. McDaid concluded, “My hope is that this project’s outcome will provide real benefits to the participants at Camp Oakhurst for years to come.”

Camp Director Charles Sutherland said that the garden offers many new programming options for Camp Oakhurst’s clients. “Having an accessible garden, where individuals of all abilities can become intimately involved with the growing process, is a real benefit for us”, Sutherland said. “By nature, gardening is such a therapeutic activity. For our campers to be able to touch and smell the soil and pick the vegetables is very stimulating”, Sutherland added. Eventually it is hoped, according to Sutherland, that produce from the garden will be integrated into therapeutic cooking activities.

Camp Oakhurst is owned and operated by New York Service for the Handicapped, a non-profit organization whose mission is to enhance the quality of life for children and adults with special needs, including autism and physical and intellectual disabilities, and provide respite for their families through a year-round camp experience. Clients live in barrier-free modern cabins, surrounded by tall trees, grass and fresh air, with all the counselors, support and adapted facilities it takes to make their stay a fun and memorable experience. Camp Oakhurst helps clients discover new abilities and new strengths, that helps foster more independence and self-confidence.

For more information on Camp Oakhurst’s unique and vital programs, please visit or call 732 531-0215.

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