Spring Obsession Garden Extravaganza – March 9

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Brooke Pottery invites you to attend the 11th Annual Spring Obsession 9am – 4pm on Saturday, March 9, 2013. Spring Obsession is a celebration of garden, art and music in Lakeland’s historic Munn Park that happens just once a year. If your yard is brown, get Downtown! More than 60 local and regional nurseries, landscapers and garden vendors will bring their plants and garden decor to Munn Park, filling downtown with springtime color and energy. Lakeland jazz band Free Time adds to the festive mood with “an eclectic and entertaining blend of musical styles ranging from Miles Davis to Stevie Wonder and Bob Marley.” Throw in free activities for children and half a dozen Gardening Presentations, and you have an irresistible family-friendly event.
springobsession1How is Brooke Pottery connected to Spring Obsession? Brooke Pottery is both a partner of the event and a participant. Our shop’s founder, Gloria Brooke, was a primary founder of Spring Obsession. Margaret Stephens, a co-owner of Brooke Pottery, helps plan the event, and we contribute a garden-themed gift basket to the auction. The shop also sets up a booth in the park, with a sampling of our sun hats, garden gloves, bird houses and feeders and artful garden stakes. Did we mention that Spring Obsession’s mission is to raise funds form cultural enhancements in Lakeland? Here’s what Gloria had to say last year in an interview with Lakeland Local:

About the origins of Spring Obsession 11 years ago, Gloria recalls, “Marie MaGrath and I were talking and decided Lakeland should have a first class garden event like Selby Gardens in Sarasota – a large plant sale with music and garden and educational workshops. We had no funds, just an idea.” Brooke and McGrath quickly built a volunteer team that made the first year’s event a big success.

One of the goals of this year’s event is to raise money for cultural enhancements in Downtown Lakeland. Event proceeds have furnished park benches in Hollis Garden and supported local initiatives including Common Ground Park, Arts on the Park, BikeLakeland and Campfire Girls. Last year, funds were used to purchase the delightfully artful bike racks outside Polk Museum of Art. “This year we are supporting artistic bike racks for the libraries and the maintenance of Munn Park,” said Brooke.

About five years ago the committee decided to support the Green movement. They added rain barrels for sale and an installation workshop. Many of the vendors offer Earth-friendly clothing and garden maintenance products.
Spring Obsession vendors and presenters have become regulars each season. The Polk County Master Gardeners have presented educational information almost from the beginning of the event. Vendors are quick to rejoin to get a space in the next year’s event. Downtown businesses support Spring Obsession for all the good they do brightening the city.

“We are so thankful for all of our sponsors but particularly Magnify Credit Union and Publix Super Markets Charities,” said Brooke. “Our committee for this event has always been entirely volunteers, so all of the net profit goes to support our community. I think all of our sponsors appreciate that.”

Gardening Presentations
Held at the Wakeman’s Parkview Banquet Room – 105 N. Kentucky Avenue (next to Harry’s)

  • 9:00 “City of Lakeland Plant Introductions” by Bill Koen, Horticultural Specialist, City of Lakeland
  • 10:00 “Basic Orchid Culture – Give Them a Good Start” by Kay Stone, Ridge Orchid Society
  • 11:00 “Citrus Greening and Other Issues” by David B. Shibles, Urban Horticulturalist, Polk County Cooperative Extenstion Service
  • 12:00 “Butterfly Gardening in Central Florida” by Linda and Buck Cooper
  • 1:00 “Worm Farming” by Ginger Hansill
  • 2:00 “City of Lakeland Plant Introductions” by Bill Koen, Horticultural Specialist, City of Lakeland

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