On Thursday May 19, the Howard Hughes Corporation teamed up with the Blue School in an effort to beautify the Titanic Memorial Park and sponsored over 50 fresh flowers for the fourth graders to plant.
The initiative to add color and spruce up the park started last year, and being such a success, the Howard Hughes Corporation were excited to sponsor its second annual planting session. Fourth graders from the Blue School were more than ready to pull up their sleeves and get to work.
“Last year we invited the Blue School to help us plant flowers and they did such a great job. The children have so much enthusiasm, and it’s a chance for them to get their hands dirty. How often do you get that opportunity in Lower Manhattan?” asked Phillip St. Pierre of the Howard Hughes Corporation, General Manager for the South Street Seaport.
The children were eager to get planting and once allowed they carefully worked together to remove the flowers from their pots and place them in the freshly dug holes. After they placed a flower in the ground, the children helped each other cover the empty space surrounding the plants with dirt and gently padded it down.
“We are taking care of the flowers and making sure they have a good place to live – like a home,” said Bianca, fourth grader at the Blue School.
The fourth graders from the Blue School were all hard at work but enjoyed themselves while planting the flowers and were proud to see the color it added to the park.
“I think it’s very very fun and beautiful. It’s great getting to help our community, and just helping out in general,” said Vivian, fourth grader at the Blue School.
The Howard Hughes Corporation is always looking for ways to help the community and are happy to see the children take on the task at hand with such a joy but also seeing how much the care about and respect this area.
“The sense of pride that comes with doing something themselves, that they can walk by every day and say ‘I did that’ and have a sense of ownership of it, that is very rewarding to us,” said St. Pierre and added: “We are all about building strong communities here and this is just one piece of that.”
The Howard Hughes Corporation also work with FiDi Families to create programs where kids can get hands on experience with building or just discovering and exploring. They also do language seminars, reading seminars, and host a tutoring program.
After the planting session the students sat down to draw some of the flowers and plants, while they talked about what it meant to the community. The children got to see their finished work and were excited to have taken part in a project to make their neighborhood more beautiful.
“It was actually pretty fun even though it’s a lot of hard work. It’s good to know that you’re helping plants grow and making the city better. It’s going to look like a rainbow,” said Vivian.
-by Eva Troester