BIGLER – Walker Gardens of the quaint village of Bigler will again open to the public. The gardens feature thousands of spring flowers, swans gliding over ponds and waterfalls, which are all interconnected by pathways.
The gardens incorporate vistas with elegant replicas of Greek ruins, a log cabin of the Civil War era, a rustic stump fence and two picturesque outhouses from days gone by and tucked away along the blooming garden paths.
The seed of Ray’s passion for gardening was planted many years ago when, as a 13- year-old boy, he developed rheumatic fever. The nurse who took care of him was fond of flowers.
“We must have sent for every seed catalog in America,” Ray explained. “I couldn’t do anything except look at those catalogs and learn about the different varieties of flowers.”
That was in 1925 before the Internet, television and smartphones. From that budding time and interest, a life-long fervor for flowers and gardening blossomed. Ray is now 102 years old and still enjoys his flowers; maybe, this is the key to his longevity.
At the garden’s opening, there will be entertainment from the 14th Street Jazz Band with Fran Zapsky. A Brass Quintet from the Pennsylvania Centre Orchestra will add to the visit to Walker Gardens.
Local artists from the Susquehanna River Arts Center will paint pictures of the gardens, where viewers may enjoy watching them at work. Artist Steve Albert will be in the gardens to draw caricatures for visitors to purchase.
Food may also be purchased from the Bigler United Methodist Charge at Walker Gardens.
All proceeds from the opening will benefit Bigler charities, including the Bigler YMCA and Bigler United Methodist Charge of Churches at Dale, Bigler and Shiloh, as well as scouting and fire police organizations.
Opening dates will be Mother’s Day, May 11, and May 18 from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Price is $3 for adults, $2 for anyone 12 – 18 years old; and $1 for any child under 12 years old.
Walker Gardens is located seven miles west of Philipsburg and 10 miles east of Clearfield off of U.S. Route 322. You will follow the directional signs at the traffic light and the Bigler intersection on U.S. Route 322.