Gardens, signs get attention from volunteers

Welcome city improvements

A new bed was installed at the Route 60 “Welcome” sign by Revitalize Dunkirk members. Left to right: Charlie Clark, Mary and Steve Rees, Judy and Al Hollander, Jim Enser. Not pictured is Patti Clark.

Members of Revitalize Dunkirk’s Beautification Committee recently built raised flower beds to neaten and improve the appearance of two “Welcome to Dunkirk” signs at the city limits, one on Brigham Road and another at the corner of Route 60 and Doughty Street.

Before beginning, Revitalize Dunkirk work crews salvaged flowers and shrubs previously planted there by other community members and incorporated them later into the newly completed beds.

Revitalize Dunkirk acknowledges and thanks Ken Drummond of Comfort Pest Control for providing shrubs for the Brigham Road site, and the Boy Scouts for petunias planted at the Doughty Street sign. A 2018 grant from Keep Western NY Beautiful and store credit from Wal-Mart paid for the rest of the materials.

The raised bed installations are part of a new project, Adopt-a-Garden, developed this year by Revitalize Dunkirk in cooperation with city officials and employees.

Adopt-a-Garden provides a formal process whereby volunteers may apply to maintain one of 10 approved ornamental planting sites on city property for the entire season. Applicants must complete a short form briefly describing their plans, sign an agreement to abide by a list of common sense rules for activities at the site, and receive approval from city officials before beginning work.

Garden adopters are responsible for all maintenance necessary to make and keep their chosen sites looking good, including watering, weeding and dead-heading spent flowers. Revitalize Dunkirk’s Beautification Committee members, along with a few gardening friends, have adopted nine of the 10 sites approved by city officials for 2018 but hope to open the project to the general public in 2019.

Adopt-a-Garden application forms and rules are available from Matthew Bourke in the city of Dunkirk’s Department of Development office, 342 Central Ave. Anyone interested in this or other civic volunteer gardening opportunities is encouraged to contact Revitalize Dunkirk Beautification Committee Chair Mary Rees:, 366-0505.

Revitalize Dunkirk, Inc., is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to bringing ideas for improved urban living to community members and elected officials and meets the third Thursday of each month at 6:30 p.m. in the Fredonia Tech Incubator, 214 Central Ave., Dunkirk. The next meeting is Thursday. Everyone interested in sharing community improvement ideas is welcome.

For more information on Revitalize Dunkirk’s community projects and activities, visit or