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Vankleek Hill Creating Centre art teacher Stephanie Pete (left) and music teacher Alice Rodger are hosting an outdoor plant sale on May 22 to raise money for the centre's arts program. Photo by Reid Masson

Vankleek Hill Creating Centre hosting outdoor plant sale on May 22

The Vankleek Hill Creating Centre is hosting an outdoor plant sale on May 22 to raise funds for the centre’s arts program. But you won’t have to wait until then to stock up your garden.

The event is being organized by Stephanie Pete, who runs the art program at the Creating Centre, and Alice Rodger, who operates the music program. Both are avid gardeners and have been getting plants ready for buyers to take to their new homes for the summer.

“The Creating Centre is an amazing place,” Rodger enthused. “Another thing we really want to promote in doing this is to let people know that community support is always needed, and there are so many things to learn.”

“There are so many courses given in everything creative – you name it. It’s a wonderful place to learn anything in arts, crafts and music.”

The sale will take place outdoors in the Creating Centre’s garden, and all Ontario COVID-19 protocols in place at the time will be observed. The garden will be set up so visitors will enter at one end and leave through the other. Ontario’s current lockdown is scheduled to end on May 20 and the organizers are optimistic the event will be able to proceed as planned.

Prices are still being finalized for plants at the May 22 sale, but prospective gardeners can pay $3 to pre-order tomatoes and most other plants. Buyers can opt to pay a bit more to upgrade to more mature plants at the time of pickup. Pre-orders can be made by contacting Pete or Rodger through their respective Facebook pages, or by calling Rodger at 613-676-4482.

The variety of plants is diverse Rodger noted. Multiple types of tomatoes are available, as well as pumpkins (both giant and regular), marigolds, herbs, squash, zucchini, peas – just about anything one could imagine.

“Stephanie and I both love gardening,” said Rodger, adding the pair have a tremendous variety of plant available. “It just literally blossomed – it’s kind of gone crazy.”

Proceeds from the sale will go towards art programs at the centre, including the purchase of a new computer.

“We also want to send out a message to encourage the community to come out and start gardening themselves,” Rodger emphasized. “It’s a great time to garden – we can’t do anything else.”

Reid Masson

Reid Masson is a graduate of Algonquin College's Journalism Program. He has over 20 years of experience as a staff writer and editor for various newspapers across Canada, including The Ottawa Citizen and Brockville Recorder and Times.

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