Friday, July 26, 2013

memorable moments at minter gardens....

We were so sorry to hear that our local show garden will be closing this fall.
For good!

It has been a favorite destination of ours through the years...
and we have so many memories connected with gardens.

We went a few days ago...

...and the three grands from next door joined us for a walk-about in the gardens. 

They too have many good memories of the gardens... they have been there with us many times over the years.

It seems we took a photo at the very same spot on a July visit in 2008.

They always seem to find ways to amuse themselves in a garden...
and rolled down the hills on that long ago summer day.

Things haven't changed a whole lot over the years.

Now they amused themselves by running through sprinklers.

 I have many photos of the lovely 'church in the wildwood' in my files.
Now I have one of kids frolicking on the lawns where the wedding parties usually pose.

I told them it would likely be their last visit to the gardens...

...and so they had their last dance.

Emme and Spencer have fond memories of getting lost in the maze which was once a garden feature...
and of visiting Snow White at the gardens long ago.

Ryder joined me for a garden tour in 2009...
and took a break on a park bench.

This week he sat on the same bench...
for the last time.

Back then he found a dwarf in a wee cottage.

This week...
he found he same cottage...
with the dwarf standing guard.

We had a wee surprise as we strolled the paths the other day.
A gardener warned us of a bear...
that had gone up a nearby tree.

We looked up...
and there he was high above us.

That is the first time we have encountered a bear in the gardens.
And the last...
I'm sure.

So many memories!

As we left the gardens...
the grands visited the phone booth.  
They were most intrigued with the phone...
and that one would put in coins to make a phone call.
It had never occurred to me that phone booths are almost a thing of the past.
This one will likely not be around much longer either.

Sometime this fall I will do a 'tribute to Minter Gardens' post...
going back through my photos from the past three decades.
But let me just leave you with one of my most touching memories today...
and that would be my visit to the vintage car show at the gardens in July, 2000.

My dad had a few of his cars at the show...
and we as a family all went to enjoy the day.
My mom was there.
Little did we know that it would be her last outing.

Here she is on that day...
pictured with two of her grandsons.
Several days later she was gone.
That was thirteen years ago...

She loved flowers and gardens...
and so it was most appropriate that her last outing was to Minter Gardens.
And that is a memory of Minter Gardens that I will always treasure.

Oh, the memories!


  1. 13 years precious that you have that photo of your mom. Only God knows the days we have. It is so wonderful she had such a lovely last day on earth.
    I'm going to have to pull out some of my oldie goldie minter garden photos for one recap before it is too late. Thanks for sharing yours.

  2. Wow, that is a post filled with many memories for your family. I was waiting for your bear story...and here it is. He looks like he has totally absorbed himself in posing for you.
    And there,s your mom with her grandson. Judy, your mom would be so proud of you and your family especially how you have carried on your rich heritage of faith and hospitality to all your friends and family.

  3. A final memory of your mom in a lovely setting us pure gold. What a blessing.

    I am curious as to why it is curtains on that great garden. I enjoyed visiting it. Wish it could be rescued and made a permanent public garden.

    1. Though the garden is a wonderful place...the Minter's made their dream come seems it is not proving to be profitable. Unlike most gardens which are operated by a society, Minter Gardens is privately owned...and the owners need to realize some profits on their investment in order to continue. What will happen to the property remains to be seen.

  4. Sorry the gardens are closing, but so glad you have so many lovely pictures to remind you of happy times there! Precious photo of your mom...glad you have that, too! My mom did not like to pose for photos, so one regret I have is not having more pictures of her.

  5. Love this post Judy. Love all the photos of years past compared to today. I especially was touched by your dear mom enjoying her grands and the gardens. The last dance shot is fabulous!!

  6. This is one of those posts that is happy and sad at the same time. I can't imagine those beautiful gardens closing. How special that you and the grandchildren had time together there, before they closed.

    My favorite picture is the one of your mother at the car show. I am sure you look at that many times. What precious memories!

  7. What a lovely post! I wonder why the gardens are closing. SO very beautiful! I was touched by the picture of your mom. I always wonder about the 'last' of things. I took my mother out to lunch today. She recognized an old friend as she was leaving. Mother was so happy to see her she cried. Only what seems like a FEW years ago both the lady and my mother were so active in their Sunday School class. I am treasuring MY days as I notice how quickly time slips away from all of us. You, my dear, have the gift of 'capturing' the moments right here!

  8. Judy, I can't wait to visit the gardens on Monday. But, I hope Mr. Bear has moved on elsewhere! You have enjoyed the gardens for a long time and it's such a shame it's closing. It's so nice that you have wonderful photos and memories of your visits there. See you on Monday!!

  9. Thank you for introducing me to the gardens - I'll always remember my first visit there with you a few years ago. I was sad to hear on CBC that the gardens are closing - what a loss to your area. I hope you and Pamela have a lovely visit there on Monday! I've missed you by a week!

  10. Thank you for posting! A reminder to me to take my last farewell walk through those beautiful gardens. What a great picture and memory of your mom at the gardens:)

  11. What a great place, filled with great memories for you. So glad you have captured them in pictures. Have a great day!

  12. This made me smile...and tear up a little. Time goes by so fast...and memories are so special. And - my kids have fantastic grandparents!

  13. I am so sorry to hear that the gardens are closing. I've always loved the gardens where flowers are planted in the shape of clocks and flags and other decorative items. Especially since I am the sort who rejoices if something actually comes up, never mind if it makes a pattern!

    I do something will happen in the intervening months to make the Powers that Be change their mind and keep the park as it is. Maybe input from citizens would help change their mind? A petition signed by users, perhaps? Or letters from users telling what the park means to them?

    Even sending them a copy of your beautiful photo essay might help save the park. Good luck with this. We are currently involved with trying to save some green space from development here. xoxox

    1. I think they have heard all the lamenting in the community...and remain firm in their decision. It seems that visits to the garden have declined over the past few years...and operating costs continue. So...short of a miracle...the gardens will be closing in October.

  14. Oh great memories for sure! May God comfort you on this day as I'm sure you'd like nothing more than a visit with your mom. Sweet photo.

  15. Oh no! I am so sorry to hear this beautiful garden is closing, Judy! I've enjoyed all the tours of it that you have taken us on through your blog, and I will miss seeing it in the future. It was nice to see how your grandchildren have grown up on each visit over the years. Is there a chance a new owner will open the gardens next year or is the land being sold for other purposes?

    Your bear encounter reminded me of mine! Who knew we had to check tree tops for bears! Lol!

  16. I hate it when things change, when great places in our history close their doors or go under financially or the original entrepreneur retires/dies and the children don't want to keep up the business. That has happened here, too, to a favorite restaurant and a wonderful local grocery store chain with a bakery that was excellent! It happened with the family beach cottage, too, still too great a loss to even talk about. I guess something in us wants the wonderful things never to change or go away, including the people in our lives.

  17. We have many precious and special memories of Minter Gardens as well. Do you suppose someone will buy the acres and carry on with the gorgeous trails, walkways and gardens? Mr, Minter had a great vision for this gravel pit, however I guess profit did not meet his dreams.

  18. I too am sad that Minter Gardens is closing. We have a wedding to attend there beginning of August but that will probably be our last time there! It is a beautiful place with memories for us too ! Your photos are lovely, Judy! and to see the bear ??? perfect timing on your part -- smile -- or is it on HIS ??

  19. Sweet photos from beginning to end. Why are they closing? Do you know? What will happen to them?

  20. What precious memories you carry with you Judy and I've enjoyed how you've matched past memories with newly made ones. And a wonderful picture of your Mom.
    We've also spent lovely afternoons at the Gardens and will need to go at least once more. I think we are all hoping that someone will buy it and keep it going. It's put Chilliwack on the map in a beautiful way.

  21. That was beautiful! If this was just a teaser for the fall tribute to Minter Gardens…wow, I can hardly wait!

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