The Preston County Master Gardeners have received top honors for their efforts to construct and maintain Arthurdale Heritageâ€™s Eleanor Roosevelt Memorial Garden. Master Gardeners Becky Friend, Mildred Lindley, Russ Sanders, and Barb Sanders were awarded the West Virginia Master Gardener Award of Excellence for Outstanding Volunteer Project. The award, given by West Virginia Universityâ€™s Extension Service, recognizes volunteers who dedicate a significant amount of time and creative effort in gardening and landscaping projects.
â€œThis award is a huge honor for our group. Our project was selected over projects in larger counties in Monongalia and Kanawha Counties,â€ said award recipient Becky Friend.
AHI President Sarah Barnes said, â€œArthurdale Heritage is very fortunate to have a dedicated group of volunteers like the master gardeners. Their dedication and vision has helped turn what was once an abandoned building foundation into a beautiful garden.â€
The garden, built on the site of the former Finks Co-op General Store, was completed in the summer of 2009. The project was funded with a Green Thumbs/Healthy Joints Grant from the West Virginia University Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center, Center for Excellence in Disabilities and a donation from Arthurdale Heritage, Inc. It features raised flower beds, decorative metal benches, and inspiring quotes from Eleanor Roosevelt.