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AARP#039;s annual Day of Service helps memorial garden grow

BURLINGTON - The rain fell sporadically, but it didn't even faze the AARP members - they just kept on planting.

The Lawrence County chapter of the AARP had its annual Day of Service Thursday at the Sybene Senior Center in Burlington. Volunteers gathered to plant flowers and beautify the memorial garden

located at the center.

"I think it's great," said AARP member Juanita Meadows. "I do my yard work at home and I enjoy it."

Meadows said that she spends a lot of time at the center. She attends exercise classes five days a week, and feels that the fellowship she shares with others at the center is great.

The memorial garden was created as a way to honor the memory of those people who had participated at the center. The idea for the garden was initiated on the tenth anniversary of the center, said Marilyn Grant Howard, director of senior services. The theme of the garden is angels and cherubs.

Howard explained that people are on the grounds of the center often. People often walk their dogs there and families enjoy the area, she said.

There have even been couples married in the garden.

"This center means a lot to people," said AARP member Kathy Moore. "It helps the center and it looks good, it can brighten their day."

As Moore sits on the ground weeding a plot to make room for the new flowers, she explains that she and her husband got involved in the project last year. Moore said that she volunteers frequently and likes to help.

"That's all the reward we want, is to see the seniors enjoy it," said Emerson Moore. He said that the AARP uses the center for its meetings, and they thought it was only fitting for them to choose to decorate the garden for their day of service.

The group also did the beautification project last year, and had eight or nine members volunteer to participate. This year, they took on the project again, and had about 19 members

mulching, weeding, pruning and planting.

"We're really glad that we've had the extra help this year," Howard said.

For more information about the memorial garden, or to make a donation, contact the Sybene Senior Center.