Submitted by Tony Barton, Christ Church Warden
If, only 8 or 9 years ago, you had found your way behind Christ Church in Lion’s Head over a misshapen patch of gravel, the lids of the septic system and a hazardous grass bank, you would have been standing on a lawn. At your back would be the windows of the lower hall and facing you a tangle of wooded wilderness and debris.
Today, a series of makeovers has created an area, linked to the lower hall, that has become a real asset to the church and, hopefully, the community.
Leading the way, with a donation of the wilderness land by owner Harold Forbes, were Gloria and Ken Charlton, who dreamed of creating a Christ Church sponsored Community Memorial Scattering Garden out of the tangle. After 7 years of negotiating legal issues and of labour, the area is now beautifully landscaped with pathways and flower beds which have already been the site of several scattering ceremonies and of quiet enjoyment on memorial benches.
But, still, the difficulty of access, the unused lawn and a hall used mainly as a holding room for redundant medical aids and other ‘stuff’, remained. No longer: in the last year there have been other changes. First the grass bank is being converted by Tony Barton into a demonstration site for native shrubs and plants. Second, a delightful stone pathway has been created from the main church driveway to the Scattering Garden and an imposing set of stone steps to the lower lawn installed. Thirdly, the lower hall has been cleared of the unwanted material, and the paneled walls been decorated with numerous pictures of the wildlife of the Bruce Peninsula by up-and-coming photographer/birder Kiah Jasper supplemented by a map and scenes of the Bruce by Tony, all set out by Anne James. Large tables and chairs are also available and the old, decommissioned kitchen is now in use as a storeroom for the Spirit Singers.
All of this has been accomplished with a dedicated crew of volunteer labourers from the church congregation and the community.
So, as an informal celebration, Christ church is hosting a Family and Community Garden Party there on Saturday, August 17 from 2 -5pm, and everyone in the community and area is invited to attend. A programme of fun challenges, games and interesting events is planned, and free hot dogs, popcorn and lemonade refreshments will be offered to participants. Guests are invited to explore the Scattering Gardens, which are also open at any time for people wishing to sit and enjoy its peaceful beauty.