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News Release - ‘LONGEST PAPER RIVER IN THE WORLD’ TO BE INSTALLED BY PUBLIC OCT 16th

Friends of the Garden / News Release,
by Jeanne Duffey, September 30, 2010

‘LONGEST PAPER RIVER IN THE WORLD’ TO BE INSTALLED BY PUBLIC
OCTOBER 16 AT NATHANAEL GREENE/CLOSE MEMORIAL PARK


Springfield’s Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park will soon be the site of what could possibly be the longest paper river in the world.

On Saturday, October 16, environmental paper artist Shirah Miriam “Mimi” Aumann invites area families, adults, teens and children to create “River of Life: Bread of Life,” a community-based collaborative environmental art installation, from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. in the 114-acre public park and arboretum located at 2400 S. Scenic Ave. across from Horton Smith Golf Course.

The free all-day event, supported by Friends of the Garden, will be held during the grand opening week of the Springfield-Greene County Botanical Center, October 11-17.

Although visitors may participate at their convenience on a come-and-go basis, Aumann urges attendance at the ceremonial official “first pour” at 9 a.m. by Botanical Center Coordinator Katie Steinhoff and Friends of the Garden President George Deatz. The Central High School Green Team has volunteered to assist at the event. Want to help, for details visit: http://www.swmogardens.com/fogcalendar/ ... p;eID=1880

In the past few weeks, Aumann has worked with area schools and organizations to collect paper, to be shredded, pulped and pigmented blue with non-toxic color.

“The organic winter wheat seeds, known as the bread of life, will be embedded into the recycled paper pulp at the last minute to prevent pre-mature germination,” said Aumann. Participants will pour the blue pulp from pitchers and buckets to form a meandering, river-like path from the rain garden toward Lake Drummond. Instructional signs and “mile markers” will be placed along the “river,” noting the length at certain points, which is expected to be approximately 500 feet long.

“As the papers break down and bio-degrade back to the earth, the seeds will germinate and produce a lovely winter wheat river, gently blowing in the breezes and evolving with the seasons,” explained Aumann. “And the public can return again and again to the park to see the results of their volunteer work.”

Envisioned by Aumann as “a collaboration with the community and mother nature, the strong message of the installation is on the issues and concerns of the day in which we live and how these affect all generations. It’s about recycling and the preservation and conservation of the quality of our waterways.”

A Branson West resident and fiber artist and one of 600 volunteer members of Friends of the Garden, Aumann has taught hand-papermaking for years. The organization, which helped raise funds to build the Botanical Center, creates and maintains 22 gardens and has plans to add 23 more.

Tax-deductible $25 annual memberships and contributions to the Friends of the Garden Growth and Maintenance Fund can be sent to P.O. Box 8566, Springfield MO 65801. The web site is www.Friendsofthegarden.org.

More details on the grand opening events the week of October 11-17 visit: http://friendsofthegarden.org/pblog/ind ... 922-182659

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