Editorial: Communities in luck

Those behind Castlegar's valuable Communities in Bloom program deserve all the credit they get

Organizers and participants of the popular Communities in Bloom program go to great lengths to explain that it’s much more than a gardener’s showcase.

While it’s true that there are few images more viewer-friendly or logo-likely than perfectly nourished and arranged flowers, the program has evolved into an effort promoting all that can be good in a community. Fabulous looking flora is just the icing on the cake.

What is basically sought out and assessed by globe-trotting Communities in Bloom judges, are the qualities and charcteristics that make life more worth living in a given town or city.

The focus of Communties in Bloom has apparently evolved to the point where all sorts of factors are considered in the careful judging:

• How does Castlegar rate in terms of tidyness as compared to… let’s say… Jasper, Alberta?

• How environmentally friendly is the local infrastructure of Castlegar compared to the arrangements on Fogo Island? The categories for comparison go on, then go on some more.

How does a visitor make fair and legitimate judgements between such vastly different communities? They do it with an incredibly detailed grid – a set of rigid criteria with relatively little ‘wiggle room’ for subjective considerations.

One thing is clear, and only takes a glance to notice: a Community in Bloom, like Castlegar, looks fantastic. We’re already winners, thanks so much to the many volunteers. We’ll see if there’s more to celebrate at awards time in September.

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