Imagine picking out a book at the Gulfport Public Library and walking out into a garden full of flowers, local art displays, benches and memorial bricks. Within two years, that dream could be a reality if the community comes together with fundraising efforts and planning. The Gulfport City Council planted the first "seed" in the community garden by approving the use of $25,000 of Library specific Special Revenue Funds to be used for breaking ground on the garden.
During Tuesday night's Regular Council Meeting, Phyllis Plotnick and other members of the Circle of Friends of the Gulfport Library asked the council to dedicate enough money to start the project. The council unanimously agreed.
The Library Specific Special Revenue Fund presently has a balance of $86,483. $25,000 of that will be used towards creating a community reading garden attached to the Gulfport Public Library.
Gulfport resident Christopher "Toffer" Ross is the architect working on the project and says the total cost of the proposed Reading Garden will be between $40,000 and $45,000. However, the $25,000 appropriation will help organizers put up a fence and begin setting pavers, bricks or a walkway near the atrium of the library.
Phyllis Plotnick, Chair of the Circle of Friends of the Gulfport Library, is hopeful they can start this as early as February.
About the Reading Garden:
The plan is to create a 1500 square foot Reading Garden west of the library's atrium. The garden will be a place for outside reading, studying, writing and meditation. It will also serve as a spot for poetry and book readings as well as social gatherings and celebrations.
The Circle of Friends of the Gulfport Library have already received in kind donations for the project including:
- Design work from Christopher Ross, ASLA
- Offers from local artists to contribute to the garden
- Estimates on the fense and paving from several vendors
For more information:
The Circle of Friends of the Gulfport Library currently meets on the 2nd and 4th Thursday at 10:15 in the Friends Room at the library. The public is welcome to attend. The time is subject to change, so you are encouraged to call the library at 893-1074 to confirm.