Saturday’s Schenectady Gazette featured photos of “a relaxing day in the park” (August 20, 2016, C2), with a full gallery online of shots by Erica Miller, from Congress Park in Saratoga Springs. But, I am pleased to say, after three visits this week to Schenectady’s Central Park, that I only had to drive a couple miles from my Stockade home to find relaxation and beauty in a park, while avoiding racetrack traffic and parking problems. As usual, there were abundant, full arrays of roses in scores of beds, plus appreciative visitors, in the famed Central Park Rose Garden, as well as a refreshing waterfall and a charming stone bridge.
Nonetheless, I was a bit disappointed at first on arriving at our prize-winning Rose Garden last Sunday, as I had come specifically to capture a special image or two of the Garden’s central fountain and of the Robert Blood “Yuan” sculpture. As the image to the right suggests, that goal was somewhat frustrated by an unexplained “improvement project.”
. . above: Yuan sculpture at construction site Aug. 14., [R] gone Aug. 19 . .
Indeed, I learned later in the week that my visit coincided with the last day the Yuan sculpture could be found at its original location. Although the roses were again more than beautiful enough to make each trip worthwhile, I was curious about the construction and the fate of the Yuan sculpture (especially given the recent spate of sculpture thefts in the region). So, I left an inquiry at the Rose Garden’s website, which was quickly answered this morning by Sharon Gade of the Rose Garden Restoration Committee: They are building a pergola (“an archway in a garden or park consisting of a framework covered with trained climbing or trailing plants”), and will be relocating the Blood sculpture. Here are some details:
- “The pergola will enhance an existing thoroughfare through the garden and create a much needed place to display climbing roses. Additionally the pergola will provide an elegant and aesthetic garden backdrop to the adjoining hillside and become another beautiful place for wedding ceremonies and photo opportunities for visitors and family gatherings.” And,
- Once its new base is constructed, the sculpture “will be featured in the far front corner of the garden near the ‘crime victims’ area where we lost a large pine tree in the microburst that went through the park in late spring.”
. . above: Central Fountain, still lovely without Yuan or the pergola . .
The following Slideshow features more than a dozen images taken August 14 and 19, 2016.
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- 2009: “rose garden escape“, with many angles on the Yuan Sculpture, and close-ups of some lovely individual flowers
- 2010: “July ends gracefully at Central Park” has two dozen photos from the Garden. In August, the “former weed patch” was named the 3rd best public rose garden in the USA. See “Central Park Rose Garden honored“.
- 2011: “rose garden in June”
- 2014: “one more reason to visit Schenectady’s Rose Garden” – the remodeling of the pond and stone bridge, with a new waterfall and creek.
. . above and below: Robert Blood’s Variations on the Chinese Character “Yuan” [garden] at its original location . .