Bridge of Flowers in Shelburne Falls | Connecting Point | Sept. 10, 2018

Bridge of Flowers in Shelburne Falls | Connecting Point | Sept. 10, 2018


>>>BUILT AS A TROLLEY BRIDGE IN
1908, THE BRIDGE THAT SPANS THE DEERFIELD RIVER BETWEEN
SHELBURNE FALLS AND BUCK LAND WAS CONVERTED TO THE BRIDGE OF
FLOWERS IN 1929, AFTER THE RAILWAY WENT OUT OF BUSINESS. IN 1983 IT WAS RENOVATED AT A
COST OF HALF A MILLION DOLLARS AND UNDER THE EXPERTISE OF A
LOCAL HORTICULTURALIST AND SEVERAL VOLUNTEERS. THE BRIDGE OF FLOWERS BLOOMS
ANNUALLY FROM APRIL TO OCTOBER, AND DAVE FRASER VISITED THE BRIM
AND BRINGS US THIS STORY.>>IN 1909, THE SHELBURNE FALLS
AND COLRAIN STREET RAILWAY WANTED TO SAVE A LOT OF LABOR
AND HAVE A WAY TO GET ACROSS THE DEERFIELD RIVER TO THE BUCKLAND
RAIL YARD. THEY CONTRACTED THE LAY COMPANY
OF SPRINGFIELD TO BUILD THE CONCRETE BRIDGE THAT HAS NOW
BECOME THE BRIDGE OF FLOWERS. IT HAS BEEN A FLOWER GARDEN NOW
FOR OVER 85 YEARS.>>PEOPLE PROPOSE ON THE BRIDGE,
THEY GET MARRIED ON THE BRIDGE. IT’S SUCH A DELIGHTFUL LOVELY
PLACE. I’VE LIVED IN SHELBURNE FALLS
FOR FIVE YEARS. AND I MOVED HERE FROM BROOKLYN,
NEW YORK. MY SHOP IS ACTUALLY LOCATED
RIGHT ACROSS THE RIVER FROM THE BRIDGE. SO IN THE SUMMERTIME AND THE
SPRING AND THE FALL ACTUALLY, THE WINDOWS ARE OPEN IN MY SHOP
AND I CAN HEAR PEOPLE EXCLAIMING IN DELIGHT ALL THE BEAUTIFUL
THINGS THAT THEY SEE.>>THERE’S A BIG EXPECTATION FOR
BLOOMS. SO I’M TRYING TO DELIVER THE
WHOLE SEASON, AND IT’S A PUZZLE, IT’S A BALANCING ACT, IT’S PART
SCIENCE, PART ART. I GARDEN DIFFERENTLY THAN YOU
MIGHT IN A HOME GARDEN BECAUSE MY PARAMETERS ARE MUCH MORE
DIFFERENT, IT’S VERY NARROW. BUT THAT BECOMES NOT A PROBLEM
BUT IT’S MY CHALLENGE, IT’S WHAT I GET TO WORK WITH. SO THE GARDEN IS VERY UP CLOSE,
UP FRONT AND PERSONAL. PEOPLE ARE JUST FEET AWAY FROM
WHAT I’M DOING. SO THERE’S SORT OF A CERTAIN
KIND OF SCRUTINY AS I WATCH PEOPLE TRAVEL THROUGH THE
GARDEN. BUT AT THE SAME TIME, THERE’S
THE CLOSEUP, AND THEN THERE’S THE WIDE EXPANSE. SO AT ANY POINT I’M REALLY
TRYING TO WORK WITH BOTH OF THOSE ELEMENTS.>>THE BRIDGE OF FLOWERS IS THE
CENTER PIECE FOR THE VILLAGE. AND THOSE OF US THAT LIVE HERE,
WE TRY TO WALK ACROSS IT SEVERAL TIMES A WEEK BECAUSE IT’S WAISES
CHANGING. —
IT’S ALWAYS CHANGING. AND I HAVE A BOOK STORE AT THE
END OF THE BRIDGE, AND MY BUSINESS IMMEDIATELY STARTS
HAVING A LOT MORE PEOPLE COMING IN BECAUSE ONCE THE BRIDGE IS
OPEN IT’S JUST AMAZING HOW MANY PEOPLE, SOME ARE PEOPLE WHO LIVE
CLOSE BY, SOME ARE PEOPLE WHO COME FROM A GREAT DISTANCE AND
MAKE AN ANNUAL VISIT.>>I FEEL LIKE MY WORK IS
INFORMED BY NATURE. MIGHT SOUND LIKE A CLICHE, BUT I
FEEL VERY PRIVILEGED TO BE ABLE TO HAVE BEEN HERE FOR 18 YEARS
PLAYING WITH PLANTS AND MAKING IT A SHOW STOPPER FROM APRIL
THROUGH OCTOBER.

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