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Open Lands of Orland Park Garden Walk Showcases Residential Landscapes

Also, vendors sought for garden bazaar at civic center.

Open Lands of Orland Park will hold its June 22nd Open Lands Garden Walk & Bazaar to help preserve open space in the Village of Orland Park. And, the village invites amateur residential gardeners to enter its separate, annual garden contest.
Open Lands of Orland Park will hold its June 22nd Open Lands Garden Walk & Bazaar to help preserve open space in the Village of Orland Park. And, the village invites amateur residential gardeners to enter its separate, annual garden contest.
The Village of Orland Park is home to an array of colorful, carefully maintained residential gardens. Open Lands of Orland Park will showcase some of these gardens on its annual Garden Walk, a fundraiser to help preserve open space in the village.

Attendees are invited to visit some of Orland Park's best residential gardens on Sunday, June 22 from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. The Garden Walk and Bazaar begins at the Orland Park Civic Center, 14750 South Ravinia Avenue, where garden and craft vendors sell their wares at the bazaar.

Advance tickets to tour the gardens are $15 each and are available at the Village Hall, 14700 S. Ravinia Ave.; Recreation Administration, 14600 S. Ravinia Ave.; and at the village's Sportsplex, 11351 West 159th St. Tickets purchased the day of are $20 each. There is no charge to visit the bazaar.

Garden and craft vendors may rent space at the bazaar for $25 each. Vendor applications are available on the village's website atorlandpark.org and at Recreation Administration, 14600 South Ravinia Avenue.

"The Open Lands Commission was created to preserve open space within the village," said Orland Park Mayor Dan McLaughlin, who initiated the group. "Over the last several years, they've done a great job actively seeking and buying nearly 300 acres of open space in the village that will forever remain open space," the mayor explained. McLaughlin added, "The Open Lands Garden Walk is one of the largest fundraisers that helps with this effort."

"There are so many beautiful residential gardens in Orland Park," said Trustee Kathy Fenton, the Village Board liaison to the commission. "The Open Lands Garden Walk is a great way to see some breath taking residential gardens and to help Open Lands' fundraising efforts at the same time," she added.

An avid gardener whose home has been featured on the walk, McLaughlin said, "This event is always very well attended as gardeners and those who don't garden want to see the fruits of everyone's labor. We know that people work very hard on their gardens and are happy to be able to showcase them and help preserve open space at the same time."

"The Garden Walk is a beautiful way to spend a Sunday," Fenton said. "People come to the Civic Center to see the different vendors, enjoy refreshments and then see some of Orland Park's most beautiful gardens. It's a great event," she added.

The Open Lands Garden Walk and Bazaar is sponsored by the Orland Park Prairie Newspaper, Speer Financial, Spaceco, Inc., Crowley Sheppard Asphalt and Coach's Corner.

For more information, call the village's Recreation Department at 708-403-PARK.

Residential Gardens Sought for Garden Contest

Separate from the Open Lands Garden Walk, the Village of Orland Park Garden Contest recognizes carefully created gardens maintained by their owners. Village residents of single family homes are invited to participate in this annual contest open to amateur gardeners.

More than 150 homeowners have entered the village's contest since it was created in 1999. Landscape architects, contractors and professional gardeners are not eligible to participate.

Traditional and unusual gardens and those with special features are welcome to enter. Judging will be based on originality, creativity and overall maintenance, as well as the use of native landscaping, color, texture, and the variety and combination of plants and flowers used.

"The village's garden contest — which is separate from the June 22 Open Lands Garden Walk — is a great way for the village to recognize the hard work so many residents put into their gardens," said Orland Park Mayor Dan McLaughlin, an avid gardener himself.

"When you drive through the village's subdivisions, you can see the results of hours of labor that people put into their gardens. We want to recognize what these residents do to beautify their homes, their neighborhoods and the Orland Park community," the mayor said.
Awards will be presented for first, second, and third place winners, as well as honorable mention awards for special garden features.

Applications for the Village of Orland Park Garden Contest are available at Recreation Administration, 14600 South Ravinia Avenue and at the Frederick T. Owens Village Hall, 14700 South Ravinia Avenue, or on the village's website at orlandpark.org

The deadline for entries for the garden contest is June 29, 2014. Judging will take place in July/August and awards will be presented at a Village of Orland Park Board of Trustees meeting in September. Contestants need not be home at the time of judging. For more information call 708-403-7275.

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