Will they return next year?
The program that began more than 10 years ago to plant flowers annually in 27 large sidewalk planters in downtown Decatur is in a financial bind this year.
Rev. Dan York, pastor of Grace Fellowship Church and the man who volunteered to oversee the project and keep the flowers looking good from May through October, reports that, for the first time, the project is short $1,200 to $1,500 in donations. Overall, the planter project costs $3,000 a year.
York said he must have that money by the end of the first full week of December or he will not be able to get a 10 percent discount for the flowers he orders by paying $1,500 upfront.
"At this time, we don't have the money to do this. Unless the money comes in within the next week, I won't be able to place the order," he said.
Any individual, business, organization, group, etc. wishing to donate can send money to the Downtown Flower Fund at the Decatur Chamber of Commerce, 125 E. Monroe St.
York added, "If there is another contractor who would like to take this project over, I am certainly willing to let him or her donate time and talents to get the planters planted and maintained. I took this project on years ago as a community service and will continue to do so as long as we can have a program that I can be proud of doing."
York noted that, for more than a decade, he has been very active in "designing, ordering, picking up, and seeing to it that the downtown planters are filled with flowers. I have donated all my labor and expertise for this entire period [and was helped in the past four years by] scout troops, church youth groups, and concerned individuals of various ages. It is becoming more of a community project each year, for which I am very grateful."
The pastor added, "Downtown merchants have helped in supporting one or more of the planters with $100 donations per planter and merchants have watered the planters during the entire growing season. Again, I say a big 'Thank You.'"
Anyone interested may call York, (260) 704-2610 or reach him at email@example.com.