By June Norvila
Mother Nature couldn’t have cooperated better than she did for the second Garden Tour and Tea hosted by the Bentley Library Society on Sunday, July 27. People attended from Rimbey, Sylvan Lake, Alix, Crestomere, Drayton Valley, Calgary, and the Bentley area.
The day started off quite warm, but cooled a little as the tour progressed. The tour was complete and all participants were inside the Bentley Community Hall enjoying the afternoon luncheon and listening to relaxing music when a small hail and rain storm struck Bentley.
People had registered at the community hall in the morning and were broken into three groups. The groups headed out at 11 a.m. Two rural and four urban garden areas were visited.
T & S Lily Gardens, owned by Tom and Sandy Turnbull, was one of the rural places visited. It highlighted hundreds of beautiful lilies in bloom and offered up a unique sense of humorous quotes and sayings on small signs. The Lily Gardens sell bulbs and a number of people will be back later in the season to purchase some.
The other rural area was the yard of Dorothy and Gordon Sherwood on RR 41-4. From the road nothing could be seen, but once you got into their park-like yard the view was magnificent and the flowers, plants and different kinds of trees and shrubs most interesting. They have even planted a Kiwi tree now to see what it will do.
In the town of Bentley itself, the institutional Centennial Garden area of the Bentley Care Centre was visited. What had started out as a centennial project has continued to grow much to the enjoyment of residents, families and staff. There is a large patio area surrounded with planters filled with beautiful blooms, as well as a lily garden with 25 different lilies, a memorial tree, a planter growing test tube potatoes, saskatoon bushes, and many other parts to their garden. Recreation Director Donna Park is the inspiration behind it all.
Gardener Linda Howard was proud to share her yard with admirers. She makes full use of every little space in her whole yard, and includes vegetables and a waterfall.
Niel Rietema enjoyed letting people see his established yard full of flowers from bulbs from Holland, his vegetables, the huge vines covering a lot of his garage and the adjoining archway, and his little Dutch boy fishing in the pond in his front yard.
Joyce McKay had agreed to let people see her yard again. Her yard was on the tour last year, but after being named Best All Around Yard in the Ag Society fair competition last year was added to the list again this year. She had just started a rose arbor last year and it has taken off.
For the afternoon luncheon back at the hall, tomato, cucumber, and egg salad sandwiches were served followed by a light lemon cake topped with whipped cream, strawberries, and blueberries. There was a delightful punch and English tea. In the morning muffins, cookies, coffee, and juice had been supplied.
Michelle Ostrikoff provided enjoyable live piano musical interludes. Vegetables for the sandwiches had been donated by Pik ‘n Pak Produce. Barb Carson drove the community van, which was one tour group in itself.
Before people left, presentations of certificates and gifts were made to the gardeners who had shared with everyone, and door prizes were drawn for. The major door prize was a hand made picture frame, donated by Friendly Freddy’s (Fred Peterson), with a beautiful pansy photo donated by Bonnie Hoskin, mounted in it.
Winners of the door prizes were Sharon Faszer from Alix, Treva Felzien from Bentley, young Ferron French-Scott from Crestomere, Linda Howard from Bentley, and Gayle Fraszer.
The work of volunteers, including the three young ladies Meagan and Emma Ostrikoff and Shayla Schneider, Mark Vander Laan who helped put away tables and chairs, library society members, and many others made the luncheon a success.
Bentley museum changes to summer hours
The Bentley Museum has had a slight change in their public viewing hours for this summer.
They are open Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Sundays from 2-5 p.m.
The museum is normally closed on Thursdays this summer but there is one exception. They will be open on parade day, Thursday, August 7, from after the parade until 5 p.m.
Admission is always free. Memberships are available.
The museum houses hundreds of artifacts, most of them local, and many travelers have been able to look up ancestors and relatives in the archives and through their pictures and news articles.
Phil Walton from Bentley has been hired as the summer employee this year and would be glad to show anyone around and answer any questions he can.