Space to Celebrate Urban Birds, Art and Community Gardening

. May 25, 2012.

A Geniune Gift
It started with great, visionary minds and skilled hands; the land was cleared and planting began. Having a desire to enrich his beloved neighborhood near Manos Greek  Restaurant, Manos Paschalis offered his property at Jackson and 14th St. to Toledo Grows, Toledo Botanical Garden’s community garden outreach program. His goal was to bring the neighborhood together by building  a community garden. The garden was carefully designed to create a true communal synergy of neighbors, both residential and business, who garden together and want to enjoy a combination of nature and art. This gathering and learning space is ideal for relaxation and discovery, as well as lunchtime picnics.

Manos Community Garden
 The Lucas County Board of Developmental Disabilities Adult Division’s Wild Connections Group along with Helen Palochko worked to make a bird friendly haven, earning the space a National Wildlife Habitat Certification. Tolco Corporation’s nearby property serves as a study satellite area,  as the garden also serves as a Cornell University urban bird study site. Set in a circular rising sun pattern, the raised bed vegetable garden has a strong sculptural presence. The plots spread out like sun rays. A graduated brick and stone terrace was hand laid by Toledoan Brad Fields. Native plants draw birds, butterflies and pollinators. Giving their gracious consent and generous support, Gary Marck of IBC Inc, his family and partner Leo Deiger, allowed seven local artists, (who donated their time and talent), to paint the 200ft wall with unified nature/community themed murals. The pieces are an amazing mix of simplicity and detail, creating a gallery effect of individual paintings. Muralists include: Katie Davis, Courtney Billian, Merce Culp, Annette Fink, Samantha Dougherty, Jerry Gray and Har Simrit-Singh. Telephone poles will be converted to totems that will also function as  bird and bat houses. A grassy area offers a spot for kids to play and for artists to display their work during the summer Art Walks. For the students of Toledo School of the Arts (TSA), the garden serves as an outdoor biology lab.
For info and to reserve a gardening plot email csomun@bex.net.

Way Cool Party
On Friday, May 4th from 10:30am -1:30pm come to the garden and join the celebration of urban birds (it’s the biggest week in American Birding) and the kickoff of the community gardening season. Mayor Bell, Congresswoman Kaptur, Manos Paschalis and the artists will be honored for their support and contributions. Enjoy music by TSA, light refreshments, free urban bird guide packets and jugglers. Come learn how community gardens
revitalize and unify neighborhoods and how you can start one or become a volunteer.