By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN
BG Independent News
Some doctoring of the Healing Garden is planned for next year in Simpson Garden Park.
The Bowling Green Parks and Recreation Foundation recently donated $27,500 for concrete work at the Healing Garden to make it accessible to all. That work will be part of a complete redesign of the garden, Park Natural Resources Coordinator Chris Gajewicz told the city’s park and recreation board Tuesday evening.
The Healing Garden is located on the far east end of the Simpson Garden Park, with access from Wood County Hospital. In the past, the garden has had more of a medieval medicine garden feel, Gajewicz said.
But next spring, the garden will be replanted to have a more holistic philosophy.
“There will be more of a mind, body and spirit approach to it,” he said. “It will be less of a curiosity and more interactive.”
For example, the plantings will include some “interactive thyme,” that will generate a calming scent as people walk through or even recline in it.
“We want the garden to be less of a walk-by,” Gajewicz said.
Programming outside of gardening may include relaxation, Tai Chi, yoga and other forms of exercise that are low impact but would benefit from a garden surrounding. The area will promote peace and calm and will have a collection of healing plants and trees to provide shade in the otherwise open sunlight environment, according to Gajewicz.
In other business at the board meeting Tuesday evening, a letter from a soccer coach was read by Parks and Recreation Director Kristin Otley. The letter told of the impact the park and recreation’s D-League soccer program had on one family.
The coach said he was recently approached by a mother, who said her foster daughter had come from an exceptionally difficult background, was very shy and rarely spoke or showed emotion. The mother, who was visibly moved, said she wanted to get the girl involved in an activity and saw the notice about the soccer league. She didn’t know anything about soccer or the league, but signed up her daughter.
According to the letter, the mom saw a transformation in the girl. “She loved soccer and loved playing with the other kids, and was so excited to hear when it was a day of practice or games.”
“To think we can have this kind of positive influence over the child’s life is extremely humbling,” the coach wrote. “This is only one story, and although others might not be as intense, I know we are having a very positive impact on these children.”
Also at the meeting, it was reported that:
- Work on the nature center at Wintergarden Park should be complete by the end of this year.
- The Zombie Mud Run had 184 participants this year.
- The next park and recreation board meeting will be Dec. 5, at 7 p.m., in the Simpson Garden Park Building.