info 04.13.15

Flowers, Light,
Water, and Sky

Fifty years ago, in early May, 1965, Lady Bird Johnson visited New York for the then-annual Salute to Spring ceremony. She was also here to receive the city's Gold Medal of Honor, awarded at at the New York Public Library.

The medal was in recognition of her national efforts which these days we would identify as environmentalist. It was rainy for much of the visit, but as usual, Lady Bird had a resolutely sunny, expansive sense of what was possible. She said,

"We want to see landscaped streets at every turn, flower boxes on windowsills and masses of flowers where masses pass. We want to see more historic buildings, churches and monuments aglow with light. We want to hear more fountains splashing with water. We want more parks and plazas opens to the sky with benches where we can enjoy the vistas."

One of the quietest, but most cheering things following September 11th was the creation of The Daffodil Project led by New Yorkers for Parks. A touchingly generous offer from Dutch bulb supplier, Hans van Waardenburg, who sent a million bulbs in the aftermath of the attacks, helped launch the project.

Five million daffodils now bloom annually in over 2,000 sites around the borough, thanks to the project and the 100,000 school kids, civic groups and other volunteers who have done the planting. Add your touch with free bulbs, which are available in the fall. The annual Daffodil Breakfast takes place on Wednesday, April 22, 8-9:30am, at Bryant Park Grill, honoring groups and individuals who have made a significant impact on NYC parks.

Meanwhile, enjoy the bursts of bright yellow, the color of remembrance.


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