My story on Community Haven’s plant nursery ran in today’s Sarasota Herald-Tribune. It’s actually Community Haven for Adults and Children with Disabilities (CHAC), and the story ran today because I said and tweeted it would run Saturday. So it goes…every time. If no one asks the dreaded question, When will it run?, then the story will run the following day. But if the question is asked, and even worse, if the question is answered, then I can count on a week’s worth of Groundhog Day mornings, which consist of me running to the driveway in my pink bathrobe before brushing my teeth or hair not to find my article in print. Even with Lucille Ball across the street, it’s not nearly as funny as Bill Murray being binged by the annoying insurance agent Ned Ryerson every morning. But back to real life as I know it, the old lady across the street looks exactly like an off-her-rocker Lucille Ball. She’s Lucy meets Kramer, and even though and possibly because she won’t so much as wave to me, she is my all-time favorite neighbor ever.
Anyway, it really doesn’t matter to me when an article is printed as long as it’s printed. But when I’ve said when it’s going to run, I check because the other person is checking. Three or four days in and I start thinking, do they think I’m some crazy woman who has no connection to the paper and there is no article? Who’s the crazy neighbor now? Lucille Ball or me?
Besides when, I also have no control over what prints. This time around, my favorite butterfly tidbit got cut from the final article. As the workers were about to move a load of parsley, about 75 swallowtail caterpillars were spotted under the leaves. Around 80% metamorphosized into butterflies. The experience was turned into an impromptu and ongoing lesson for the Selby preschoolers on the life cycle of butterflies.
The nursery specializes in butterfly plants and Florida native plants. This is a table full of newly propagated milkweed…just think of all the Monarchs and lessons!
The article turned out great regardless of timing or edits because CHAC really has something with their plant nursery – the potential for a profitable business that drives a social cause. It’s smart and it comes from a good place - to provide work and resources to people with disabilities. And here’s a general observation that I can’t make in a newspaper article: it felt like a happy place to be and work, disabled or not. Shop there, take a tour, hire the crew for landscaping, donate something, anything, just support their cause. They are providing programs, food, housing, support, and jobs to our community. And the more support we give, the quicker they’ll become another reliable, healthy, local food source. They’re already talking about starting a buyers club.
The nursery is located at 4405 DeSoto Road; the number is 941-302-1828.