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HomeNewsSensory garden for Huntsville's Riverside Park a "slam dunk" project

Sensory garden for Huntsville’s Riverside Park a “slam dunk” project

The Rotary Club of North Muskoka has been given the thumbs up to build a sensory garden in Riverside Park in Huntsville.

The idea was first pitched in May 2022 by Andrew Zanier and Cara Schiedel to the town’s Accessory Advisory Council. The proposed layout will see a wheelchair-accessible path built starting on the east side of the existing garden and trees at Main St. E going to the turnaround loop. There will be raised garden boxes at wheelchair height along the trail, too. As well, there will also be a barefoot sensory path, made of different textures, that will run for a few feet from the end of the turnaround loop. 

“The sensory garden engages all five senses of the user, allowing a focus that keeps them in the moment, taking them out of the hustle and bustle of everyday busy life, even if only briefly,” writes Tarmo Uukkivi, director of operations and protective services, in a Feb. 27 report to council.

Coun. Scott Morrison called the idea during the Feb. 27 council meeting a “slam dunk for an underutilized park.”

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Uukkivi says the park has “very little in it” currently, so he welcomes the idea. He says the funding for the project will be handled completely by the Rotary Club of North Muskoka.

However, the agreement, which Uukkivi noted has not been finalized, could involve the town being responsible for the replacement of property if it gets damaged, stolen, or becomes too worn down.

“It’s another outside organization stepping up and coming forward with a fantastic idea,” says Mayor Nancy Alcock. 

Council was unanimously in favour of the idea.

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