Being that it was one of the first days of summer, it was already sweltering by 10am when we arrived at the small town of Kernersville, NC. As we made our way south from the center of town we came upon the Paul J. Ciener Botanical Garden. Upon pulling in, we knew this place was special. When GRO1000 asked us to pick a community garden to help promote to the locals and be able to show off our Mobile Library in a new city, we jumped at the opportunity. We never expected to find a secret garden hidden in North Carolina. We were greeted by a friendly staff who quickly gave us a lay of the land. We decided to set up by taking over their over sized parking lot. We set up our tables and benches and even broke out our nifty new tent (it was hot). After a quick sun shower the sun was out, and we were open for reading.
We didn’t know what to expect from such a small town. We had just had an amazing show in Raleigh and it was a Monday afternoon. At around 12 pm we started getting people who had skipped out of work, or decided to take a ‘long lunch’. The people that came were so enthusiastic. Our tables quickly became a community gathering place for everyone who came. Sketchbooks were shared, names were exchanged and a quiet happiness found it self in that garden.
'There is nothing like reading in a garden!’ One visitor said. And they were right. We had never shown at a place quiet like this. It became a setting we will forever long for. Towards the end of the day we started to pull books with garden-esq tags. We found books about bees, flowers, gardens and much more. The trip opened our eyes to all these amazing books we never thought to pull.
The most amazing part was that even though it was about 90+ degrees out side, people stayed for hours to look through the sketchbooks. Even after we finally had to close and get on the road, we kept seeing our community lingering around the gardens.
During the show, Sara and I, both made sure to take a moment to Meander ourselves. Taking time to reflect on this summer day, in this small town on this BIG Summer Tour.
This post was written as part of a partnership with Scott’s Miracle-gro and it’s GRO1000 Grant Program.