A Labor Of Love

By: Claire Tribble

The wonderfully talented Athens-Limestone Beautification Board has been very busy in the past few weeks. They have gone above and beyond to beautify our wonderful city. From the gorgeous pots that line the Downtown Square, to the Clinton Street Triangle, to the cemeteries and even a breathtaking tree at the Donnell House Festival of Trees, they have been working diligently to perfect everything and leave a little pop of color and cheer throughout. This crew of talented, hardworking ladies deserve a big pat on the back!

In September, the Beautification Board along with Athens Public Works emptied the pots around the Downtown Square. Sam McMeans and his crew graciously brought a mini excavator and pulled all of the shrubs and existing plants out of each pot at 4:30 in the morning. They loaded each of the shrubs and their giant root balls onto a Beautification Board member’s trailer and came to help her unload them. And they didn’t stop there — again they came back at 4:30 a.m. to help us empty rock and soil into each of the 22 pots. This project would not have been possible without their help, and we cannot thank them enough!

Not only did Athens City Public Works show out, but the Athens Walmart was AMAZING. The store manager, Chase Mobley, awarded the Athens-Limestone Beautification Board a grant for $2,000! This grant was a blessing for sure! It allowed the ALBB to fill all the pots with fresh, high-quality soil and the winter pansies! Our crew of hard-working ladies planted each pot with care and a little love. As everything dies back this time of year, it’s wonderful to be able to look over and see the bold colors that the pansies bring. We cannot thank Mr. Mobley and the Athens Walmart for the support and smiles that they have helped bring to Athens.

Last week, the Board was able to decorate a tree for the Donnell House Festival of Trees. This is their big fundraiser of the year, and ALBB decorated a breathtakingly beautiful tree! Ms. Barbara Newman was the genius behind the design, and it was nothing short of amazing. The tree, which is decorated in all white, is really something to see. Her talent and artistic eye enveloped the “White lights and Christmas delights” theme. So, if you get a chance, stop in and see this beautiful tree and the many others that fill the Donnell House. Your tour also supports the Donnell House, a historic monument right here in Athens. You may even find inspiration for your own tree (or an additional tree!).

After decorating the Donnell House tree, the ladies met at the Old Town Cemetery to hang the Christmas wreaths at the historic cemetery. They placed each wreath with care to honor some of Athens’ first citizens. They also placed wreaths at the Athens City Cemetery and the Thatch-Mann Cemetery. Their thought and care that went into the decorating of the wreaths for each one should be acknowledged and appreciated by all of us!

So as you travel through Athens and see these touches, remember that the Athens-Limestone Beautification Board volunteered their time and hard work to help beautify our wonderful city! Enjoy those bright pops of bold color as you shop and eat downtown this winter and know that each pansy was planted with care and love. And send these wonderful ladies a “Thank you” if you can.

By: Claire Tribble – Executive Director, Keep Athens-Limestone Beautiful