A ribbon-cutting ceremony officially opened the Memory Grove in Fort Langley; below: Janel Doyle named a tree for her son. Dan Ferguson Langley Times

VIDEO: Fort Langley Memory Grove opens

A “feel-good project” that brought community together, organizer said

The new Fort Langley Memory Grove officially opened in Fort Langley in June with a ribbon-cutting, plaque unveiling and a fly-past.

Thirty trees have been arranged as a place to stop and relax on the Salmon River Trail between the Fort to Fort Trail and Billy Brown Road.

Each tree has its own name, many of them whimsical like “may contain nuts,” “bloomers” and “where pigs fly.”

“We wanted to give personalities to the trees so everyone who sponsored a tree was asked to select a name,” said Kurt Alberts, one of the organizers of the project.

Fort Langley resident Janel Doyle named one tree after her son, Linc, as a way of expressing in literal terms how her family has taken root in Fort Langley.

“He’s the most important thing in our life,” she said of her son.

“It gives him a legacy. No matter what happens in life, he’s got a place to come (visit) and he’ll always have the memories of being in Fort Langley.”

Three horse chestnuts, 14 red horse chestnuts, 11 grand firs and two western red cedars were planted by contractor Heidelberg Landscaping.

Members of the First Fort Langley Scout Group planted riparian shrubs, including Red Twig Dogwood, Twinberry, White Snowberry and Evergreen Huckleberry.

READ MORE: Work gets underway on Memory Grove

The project was inspired by the legacy left nearly a century ago by Dr. Benjamin Marr, who planted trees in front of the Marr House and the Fort Langley Cemetery on Glover Road that have grown to form a towering canopy over the road.

Marr planted 17 Horse Chestnuts on the west side, and seven Horse Chestnuts, alternated with Western Red Cedars, on the east side.

In the cemetery, more Western Red Cedars were planted to form the backdrop for the cenotaph, along with Rhododendrons.

Alberts said the inspiration to build on that legacy goes back to a meeting he had with Dr. Marr’s son, Bill Marr, a number of years ago.

Bill, who passed away at the age of 100 in February, was only four-years-old when his father planted the heritage trees.

“It was a feel-good project,” Alberts said, one that brought the community together.

Alberts said pulling off such an ambitious legacy project required a lot of volunteers and businesses to come together.

“It’s one thing to have an idea, but it’s one thing to actually make it happen,” Alberts said.

“The dollars are pretty significant.”

If it wasn’t for the success of the Grove fundraising gala on April 19, “We wouldn’t have been able to pull this off,” Alberts said.

READ MORE: Heritage grove to be planted near Bedford Landing

Alberts estimated the cost at about $50,000, not including the pro bono efforts of Mark van der Zalm, whose landscaping company donated staff and time.

Van der Zalm, who was MC at the opening, said the Grove would provide “a node on the trail where people can stop and rest for a moment.”

Township mayor Jack Jack Froese called it a “very special project” that will benefit future generations

“It’s great to see this grove come to life,” Froese said.

Alberts presented a community spirit award to Lee’s Market for their support of the project. Following the ribbon cutting, there was a fly-past by the Fraser Blues formation flying team.



dan.ferguson@langleytimes.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

Janel Doyle named a tree after her son. Dan Ferguson Langley Times

Kurt Alberts described it as a “feel-good project” at the official opening of the Memory Grove. Dan Ferguson Langley Times

Fly-past by Fraser Blues over Memory Grove. Dan Ferguson Langley Times

Township mayor Jack Froese spoke at the opening of the Memory Grove. Dan Ferguson Langley Times

A plaque was unveiled. Dan Ferguson Langley Times

Just Posted

‘It’s like a party in your mouth’

Langley creator’s Milkshake Burger makes its debut at the PNE

Grass fire closes Mufford overpass to traffic

Township fire crews using ladder truck to battle blaze

Chilliwack gymnast to compete in Pan American Championships

Canadian national teamer Zachary Clay travels to Peru in September for international competition.

Trinity Western University changes controversial covenant

Pledge forbidding sexual intimacy outside of marriage optional, but only for students

Pitt Meadows airport manager resigns

Guy Miller was just two months on the job

Average Canadian family spends 43% of income on taxes: study

Fraser Institute’s consumer report shows taxes accounting for larger chunk of income each year

RCMP to search for body after man drowns in B.C.’s Buntzen Lake

Officers and fire crews responded but the man from the Lower Mainland is believed to have drowned.

Police chiefs call for stricter controls on pill presses to fight opioids

Canada’s police chiefs are urging Ottawa to beef up its fight against the opioid scourge by closely vetting people who import pill presses

Hot, dry conditions forces drought rating to highest level on Vancouver Island

The province says Vancouver Island is under Stage 4 drought conditions

Victoria police say explicit calls continue to target women

Over 50 reports of unwanted, sexually explicit calls have come in

Get involved in the Great Canadian Bumble Bee Count

Environmental organization develops app to help with the nationwide count

Pesticides linked to bee deaths will be phased out in Canada, sources say

Neonicotinoids, or neonics, are a class of pesticides used by farmers and hobby gardeners alike

Wildfire smoke blankets B.C. and Alberta, prompting air quality advisories

About 25 new wildfires were sparked between Monday morning and midday Tuesday

Most Read