By: Susan Erler | Category: Lawn & Garden | Issue: June 2010
Committee members are busy preparing for Safenet Services’ 15th annual Garden and Pond Tour on June 5. (L to R): Cari Bohannan, Tammy Thomas and Carrie Higgins.
They say that imitation is the greatest form of flattery. If that is indeed true, then the Claremore-area homeowners who have graciously decided to open their doors and their gardens to help a very worthy cause should feel extremely flattered! As guests tour each of the locations during the 15th Annual Garden and Pond Tour, scheduled for Saturday, June 5 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., the goal will be to re-create in their own backyards the masterpieces they are viewing. And it is possible with a little help from tour sponsors. The tour will benefit Safenet Services, Inc., a local non-profit agency.
Four area residents and two local businesses are featured this year. Each offers a unique landscape design and feel. Tammy Thomas, chairperson of the event, says that this year is sure to be the best ever. “We are so excited about the sites on this year’s tour. We have a variety, including the gardens at the Master Gardeners Teaching Garden, located on the campus of Rogers State University. The mixture of different areas will give guests a greater array of ideas. We want everyone to go home excited about their own backyard possibilities!”
One of the best parts of the tour is the attention they are paying to the smallest details. For instance, how many times have you marveled at the beauty of a flower or plant, but had no clue of the plant name or where you can find it yourself? Not at this tour! The night before, local Master Gardeners will painstakingly label every plant, tree and flower in the flowerbeds and landscapes of the participating homes and businesses.
The Master Gardeners Association of Rogers County is a nonprofit association operating under the supervision of the OSU Cooperative Extension Service. Through its volunteer organization, Master Gardeners assist the Rogers County Extension Service by providing horticultural information to the public through various programs like the Garden Tour. Be sure to bring along a camera and a notepad so you can capture the beauty and names of those that you want to incorporate into your own residence.
Addresses featured on the tour are the homes of: Bill and Ann Harmon, 9835 E. Shadowlake Lane; Ava Purkey, 3152 Allan’s Point Drive in Talala; Earl and Regina Wilson, 19455 E. Acorn Road; and Darrell and Donna Hazel, 2306 Ridgeview Lane. Businesses involved are: Master Gardeners Teaching Garden, located on the campus of RSU, and Shepherd’s Cross, located at 16792 E. 450 Rd. in Claremore.
Another fun feature of the tour is the Annual Garden Party Luncheon. Visitors are encouraged to stop and take a break during the tour to refresh and replenish their energy. The St. Paul Episcopal Church is again hosting the luncheon. The cost is only $7 and includes lunch, a beverage and dessert. All proceeds benefit the domestic abuse shelter. A special “thank you” goes out to the St. Paul Episcopal Women who make this possible.
One more fun addition to the tour is sure to bring out the shopper in each of us, and remember, it is for a good cause! Each home will have a retailer set up who will be selling a wide variety of garden, plant and outdoor items. Windsocks, garden stakes and so much more will get you started on the path to your perfect outdoor escape.
Safenet Services is a domestic violence and sexual assault prevention and intervention agency serving Mayes and Rogers Counties. It is a United Way agency and is approved by the Office of the Attorney General. They have provided shelter since 1991 to over 2,500 women and children. They offer free programs for victims and survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault, including the shelter, individual and group counseling, the Batterers Intervention Program, victim advocacy, the Protective Order office, transportation and parenting education. But, they need your support to keep up their work. Help them help others by attending this fun and informative event.
Tickets for the event are $10 and can be purchased at the Safenet offices, located at 2235 N. Hwy. 88, or you can contact them for additional information at (918) 341-1424. Tickets will also be sold at each individual home the day of the event, so no matter what house you begin at, you can purchase your ticket for the whole tour.