Cities which are fun to visit usually make an all out effort to welcome and enchant visitors and residents with lots of flowers and neat landscaping during the warmer seasons. Many of our downtown businesses have not made floral displays a priority and we hope that this might become more the norm as the city of Dunkirk turns to tourism and waterfront entertainment for more of its revenues. We do highlight businesses and non-residential properties once a year, so here are the choices for 2012.
Monnies Club on Lake Shore Drive East is selected for Ward One. Sculpted beds of shrubs and flowers welcome guests to the Club. Neatness abounds with nicely mulched beds. Our second selection is the Clarion Hotel , Lake Shore Drive East, with new flower beds in front providing showy color. Beds of wigelia are blooming once again this year. The pond and waterfalls under the canopy are a sight to see with a large number of koi.
Second Ward recipients are two social service agencies which have created beauty for their clients and the community. Absolut Care at 447 Lake Shore Drive West has developed gardens around a nautical theme, reflecting their location close to Lake Erie. Custodian Cain has developed these gardens over many years, including bird sculptures and driftwood, and large dock-sized pilings supporting the Absolut Care sign and repeated throughout the grounds. There is a wooden pier with a small boy fishing, all surrounded by wave shaped flower beds filled with tall grasses, phlox, starburst, roses, sedum, black eyed Susans, daisies, lilies and geraniums. A large assortment of ornamental trees also adorn the property.
Also on Lake Shore Drive West is The Resource Center, a large, handsome facility surrounded by multicolored shrubbery. Close to the entrance is a circular garden at the base of the flag pole brimming with bright and fragrant annuals and a small plaque dedicating the garden to deceased friends at the center. Behind the building is a new greenhouse promising future projects and there one can find "the sensory garden". This grant-funded project as explained by staff member Jackie Simpson was started in 2010. Four raised wooden beds give easy access to those individuals in wheelchairs or with other disabilities. Other in-ground gardens feature plants with different textures and smells to stimulate the senses of the blind and delight others with various disabilities. Clients have helped plan, water and care for the gardens. Some of the vegetables were started with grow lights indoors , then moved to the new greenhouse, and have been used for cooking and baking projects at DayHab. Over the course of the summer, the gardens provide a nice area for participants to enjoy picnics and outdoor activates.
Third Ward business garden of the week goes to McGraw-Kowal Funeral Home at 736 Central Ave. An expansive front lawn is neatly manicured and kept a verdant green. A flower border in front of the brick home is bursting with red geraniums, silver artemisia and white alyssum giving a very attractive and well cared for entry. Holy Trinity Church also on Central Ave. is recognized for a thoughtfully placed bench facing a three-part trellis surrounded by pink and red roses and a white statue of St. Teresa of Little Flower. A border of impatiens in shades of pink and ornamental grasses are planted at the front entry.
The Fourth Ward has chosen the Kosciuszko Polish Home Association building surrounded by many small shrubs, neatly trimmed with an American flag at each shrub.The landscaping is well done and highlights bright geraniums at the base of the flagpole with a handsome stone edging.
Also selected is the Blessed Mary Angela church (St. Hedwig's) showcasing many shrubs and perennials, white and yellow daisies, in the landscape around the church. Roses are in abundance around the Rectory in many colors. Special care has been given to selecting a variety of lovely trees on the property, with a crimson red maple as a prime example.