Parrsboro decides against Communities in Bloom

Andrew Wagstaff
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Despite success in 2013, council decided to sit this year out

PARRSBORO – After earning five blooms at the provincial level last year, Parrsboro has decided against continuing with Communities in Bloom in 2014.
Town council made the decision at its monthly session on Jan. 28.

Council met with Dr. David Howe, who co-chaired the 2013 Communities in Bloom (CIB) effort with Dawn McCully, at its Jan. 21 committee-of-the-whole meeting regarding Parrsboro’s future options in the community beautification program. Earning five blooms at the provincial level last year opened the door for the town to compete at the national level of the program this year, if it chose to, or it could also have competed provincially again.

Its decision was to do neither, but instead to “take the year off.”

“Taking into consideration the tremendous commitment required of a small group of volunteers, it was recommended that the town not enter the CIB competition this coming year,” said deputy mayor Lisa Ward.

The decision does not mean that beautification efforts will not continue in Parrsboro this year, however, according to Mayor Lois Smith.

“Our plan for this year is to focus on enhancing the work that has already been done,” said Smith, referring to work such as planting flowers and painting. “We just want to continue doing what we started, but maybe branch out more into the community.”

Taylor Redmond will continue in her role as the town’s project co-ordinator, which will encompass some of this work, according to the mayor. Volunteers are also encouraged to continue their efforts, such as Carolyn Henwood, who has put tremendous work into improving Gavin Park. Henwood has approached the town with the idea of building a pergola for the small park, which could be used as a backdrop for wedding pictures and other occasions.

Howe, who was in attendance at the meeting, said he was surprised by the decision, although he seemed to understand the reasoning behind it.

“I think there is a shortage of volunteers who want to do it,” he said. “Even if it did go ahead, I think it would have to be promoted by the town rather than how it was done last year, when a group of volunteers came to the town and said they wanted to do it.”

He admitted that he probably would not have continued on in his role as co-chairman, had the town decided to re-enter the program.

Twitter: @ADNandrew

Geographic location: Parrsboro, Gavin Park

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