October 1, 2012
In the past 45 years many staff have expressed their desire for a more useable space for students, staff and the community, and within the past 3 years, a group of concerned and interested individuals have come together to volunteer their time to revitalize and beautify these Courtyards.
It has been, and will be, a long process to reach our goal of revitalizing these courtyard gardens, but with the help of generous donations of funds, materials and labor we hope to accomplish this soon. We have moved tons of rock, re-used and repositioned many concrete pavers, hauled in many yards of topsoil and planted many trees, shrubs and perennials. Benches, landscape timber, a toolshed and a water fountain have been donated, and now many tulips and daffodils bloom in amongst the beginning stages of these gardens.
I would like to acknowledge all those many people who helped to prepare the Legacy Courtyard Gardens for the Heather Laxdal Gazebo Dedication. The Gazebo was donated by Tracy and Curtis Loucks of Loucks Medi-Centre in memory of Tracy's sister Heather. We hope that the Gazebo becomes a symbol to our staff, students and the community of the dedication and committment that Heather had for the YRHS, and that it will also become a source of inspiration to others to become leaders and positive role models.
When you look around you will see evidence of the positive message of giving back to your school and community that Heather and her family have begun. When we hired Gross Construction to frame and pour the concrete...they donated all of their labour. When we hired Chad Hicks to assemble the Gazebo...he strived for perfection, added missing parts and donated a portion of his labor...and when we went to Youngs Plant World to purchase some mulch and greener, Donna donated the mulch and 3 mugo pines to add to the spirit of giving.
It took countless hours of work to erradicate and torch the weeds, level ground and haul in and landscape the area with potted plants and fall arrangements.
I would like to thank the following key people for their hours of work: Kevin East, Jean Knoll, Carma-Lee Doupe, Dee Dee Walker, Sheila Tillman, and Diane Koch.
I would also like to thank:
- Lynn Brand who always brought us food after school so that we could work till 6:00 or 7:00 pm!
- Bonnie Trowell for her marvellous truck load of cut asparagus fern.
- Johnna and her parents for letting us raid their garden for the fall display and to Johnna for organizing the Dedication ceremony.
- The many staff who brought in their potted plants, and my neighbors for giving up theirs.
- Rusty Tamblyn and his spring class for laying a second row of pavers to the Gazebo.
- Dennis Nesseth for calling in the contractors.
- Jared Edwards for absorbing the cost of the concrete into his budget.
- The many staff who lent us their students.
- Rachel Brown and Mackenzie Bowman for unloading plants from my truck every morning for almost 2 weeks!
- My art students for moving rock and carrying plants.
- Kyle Auramenko and Zach Unrau for all their help.
- Murray Stewart and members of the choir for singing at the Dedication.
- And the maintanance staff who add our requests for help to their list of daily chores.
When I think of the many, many hours of volunteer labor from the committee, students and staff, I can safely say that to honour Heather Laxdal was truly a Labour of Love from many, many people.