Town of Millet wins National Outstanding Achievement Award for community gardens

Millet has won the 2021 National Community of Gardener’s Outstanding Achievement Award.

Gardening at the cemetery. Submitted/ Millet in Bloom.

Gardening at the cemetery. Submitted/ Millet in Bloom.

The Town of Millet’s community gardening efforts are being recognized on a national scale.

On Oct. 7, 2021 during the national Communities in Bloom virtual awards ceremony broadcast, it was announced that the Town of Millet had won the “National Outstanding Achievement Award- Community Gardener’s Award”.

Millet’s Community in Bloom was also the recipient of the “Hope is Growing Social Media campaign- Small Communities Award”.

The objective for the Community of Gardeners Award was to recognize broad community involvement in gardening and horticulture projects. The Millet community was recognized for their dedication to demonstrating excellence in gardening among Town administration, businesses and residents.

“We have a wonderful group of people in Millet! Our Millet in Bloom volunteers are totally dedicated to our town, putting in hours of work throughout the year,” says Millet in Bloom Chair Marlene Alberts-Wadsworth.

Millet Community in Bloom initiatives that led to them being selected as one of the national finalists for this award included:

• The theme for 2021 has been the year of hope and in the spring Millet in Bloom planted 50 yellow hope tulips (symbolic of hope) and encouraged residents and businesses to plant their own yellow flowers, many of which participated.

• One of Millet in Bloom’s largest accomplishments in 2021 was the implementation of a community garden. The community garden was very well received by the community with plots for local residents to pay for and maintain as well as free plots for children and individuals with disabilities. There was also a volunteer maintained plot for the Millet Community Foodbank. Water was donated weekly by the Town of Millet and the Millet Fire Department.

• The community garden is also home to the newly created Jenny Winkler Memorial Garden, created to honour the late Millet high school student.

• Millet in Bloom held their annual Garden of the Week competition where 14 gardeners were nominated by their neighbour. In this local competition, six gardens were chosen out of the nominations to win Garden of the Week.

• The Millet & District Museum and Archive’s summer children’s programs focused on gardening in 2021. Children learned to plant, week, water, and harvest as well as the seed cycle, composting, protecting pollinators, and skills like drying and using herbs, making jam, and making pickles (cucumbers donated from a local resident’s garden.

In addition to all these initiatives, Millet in Bloom volunteers maintained 30 garden beds, 20 planters, and 50 hanging baskets around the community all season long.

“Being my first year as Chair of Millet in Bloom, I was completely overwhelmed,” says Alberts-Wadsworth on Millet’s win. “I didn’t expect to win, once again, one national award, let alone two! As a group we are absolutely thrilled!”

“These wins underscore the vital role that Millet in Bloom plays in putting the Town of Millet in the national spotlight.”

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Submitted/ Millet in Bloom.

Submitted/ Millet in Bloom.

Children watering plants as part of a children’s program partnered with Millet in Bloom. Submitted/ Millet in Bloom.

Children watering plants as part of a children’s program partnered with Millet in Bloom. Submitted/ Millet in Bloom.