Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful (KADB) partnered with the art departments of Darton State College and Albany State University to paint a garden scene mural at the Adult Day Care Center of AARC. In December , KADB’s @Lowe’s Community Improvement Grant allowed KADB to install ceiling fans, pavers, flower beds and three raised garden boxes at AARC. The art students were elated to see the smiles on the AARC clients faces as they viewed the mural.
Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful sponsored an elementary school Arbor Day Celebration with 450 students enjoying a Tree Education presentation by Dr. Kay Kirkman, Chairman of the City Tree Board. Partners included the City Tree Board, two DAR Chapters, The Woman’s Club & Master Gardeners. Our mission was through education and hands-on involvement to instill a vision of conservation, preservation and a knowledge-base for our students regarding the important role that trees play in our everyday lives. The students planted two large Live Oaks.
Keep Albany-Dougherty Beautiful celebrated Arbor Day as 33 volunteers planted 30, 15-gallon new trees in downtown Albany on Saturday, Feb. 21, as well as 13 Chinese Elms, 14 Crape Myrtles and three Eastern Redbuds, which now visually enhance the downtown urban canopy. Job Corps students, citizens at large, City Tree Board members, a County Commissioner and a City Commissioner participated in the event.
Creating Beauty in the Circle City
In 2014, thanks to a generous grant from the KAB/Lowe’s Community Partners Grant Program, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful (KIB) created the Westminster Pocket Park on the Near Eastside of Indianapolis. Partnering with our local Lowe’s store and 17 Lowe’s Heroes, KIB was able to create an amazing community asset.
The vision for the Westminster Pocket Park is to become a vibrant community gathering place, an outdoor sanctuary for clients of all ages. Features such as sculpted benches and art will encourage community members as well as residents of the Westminster Neighborhood Services Adult Services Center to linger—enjoying the beauty of nature and learning about the benefits of native plants to the environment. Due to the large number of seniors living in the surrounding community, the Westminster Pocket Park is a “senior-friendly” greenspace where residents of all ages can gather and interact in a safe space.
In the fall of 2014, KIB hosted a check presentation event to commemorate the space and kick off the Lowe’s volunteer day. Volunteers quickly got to work, prepping the site for the functional art, and helping to plant thousands of native grasses. All of this work will provide accessible greenspace and help bring neighbors together, serving as a green destination to revitalize a neighborhood where vacant lots are plentiful and greenspace scarce.
Now that this space is complete, all that’s left is for the plants to bloom next spring, hopefully in time for the completion of the adjacent Adult Services Center, and then we will start to see increased use of the space by the community!
When the local power company “trimmed” the pine trees in the front yard of Haltom City Hall, we saw it as an opportunity to create a demonstration landscape using Texas native perennials and hardscaping. Getting the grant for $5,000 from the KAB/Lowe’s Community Partners Grant program made it possible. Work began in mid-September and was finished the last week of November. Come spring, the low-water plants will contrast beautifully with the whites, browns and beige colors of the various stones. Thanks, KAB and Lowe’s.
The Pine Bluff/Jefferson County Clean & Beautiful Commission was very honored to have received the KAB/Lowe’s Community Partners Grant for $20,000 to implement the “Safety is Beautiful” project focusing on two large, heavily-trafficked areas in Pine Bluff: 8th Street medians in front of the Convention Center and the main Post Office and also on Harding Avenue.
With the grant award, Clean & Beautiful was able to install four new walkways, trim back hedges, shrubs, and trees, and put in new landscaping for beds that were in disrepair. Even with the crazy and unpredictable weather of Arkansas, we were able to put in the four walkways; replace old, torn, and warped metal edging with stone pavers; level out the brick walks in the turnaround areas; remove dead trees and debris; plant over 1,000 daffodil bulbs, 250 irises, 250 or more day lilies, 10 to 20 azaleas, over 100 hosta, 25 ferns, 20 pencil hollies, 40 boxwood, two large crepe myrtles, 40 ornamental grasses, and the list goes on. These beds were in need of major revitalization and the efforts that Lowe’s afforded us to make were invaluable to the safety of motorists, pedestrians, and surrounding communities who use these areas everyday.
We had around 450 volunteers in total and were able to build new community bridges of communications with organizations who have never been able to work together. We had volunteers of all ages and backgrounds. Our youngest volunteer was Gabriella Ogles, age 4, who is pictured here. Her favorite thing to do was dig holes to plant the bulbs and small plants, although as seen here, she really wanted to be like the big people in helping carry the mulch! She was a true reminder of what these projects help to instill in our community and its youth, when presented with the opportunities! We are thrilled with the success and improvements that this grant was able to make in our community!
Thank you for the $10,000 KAB/Lowe’s Community Partners Grant awarded to Keep Pike County Beautiful in McComb, MS! Without it we could not have built our above-ground, organic garden at St. Andrew’s Mission in McComb, which serves Southwest Mississippi through its Food Pantry, Men’s Shelter and Soup Kitchen.
The Garden has also been a teaching model for the Jr. Garden Club, called the Busy Bees, who helped to do the initial planting of our fall/winter crop and helped with the first harvest. Thanks to the Boy Scouts for helping to build it. We are hoping that the Garden will be a model for more to come!
Keep Las Vegas Beautiful (KLVB) team members along with Lowe’s Heroes volunteer employees, teachers and students successfully installed Outdoor Garden Classrooms at three local elementary schools, thanks to a $20,000 KAB/Lowe’s Community Partners Grant awarded to KLVB .
KLVB selected schools in need of garden projects which are qualified Title One schools with at least 90% of the students receiving free or reduced-price lunches. Schools selected for the KLVB Outdoor Garden Classrooms are also located within City of Las Vegas’ Neighborhood Risk Assessment Program areas. This program is a coordinated approach to identifying targeted neighborhoods that can be revitalized based on a strategic and collective focus of resources and programs.
Each school received up to five 8’ x 4’ raised beds with soil, seeds, automatic drip irrigation and a year of maintenance. In addition, the schools will get weekly visits from a local farmer, who will teach students and teachers how to take care of the garden, plant and harvest, as well as a free curricula for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math lessons concurrent with Nevada State Standards, Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards along with free teacher training. The program also organizes visits from local chefs to demonstrate how to cook food from the garden, teaches students how to organize and run a farmers’ market, and offers a Junior Master Gardener’s program.