As we move into the holiday season and the end of 2022, the Friends of the Lake Lure Flowering Bridge has much to be excited about and thankful for.
Coming Soon – A Winter Wonderland: Whether you are visiting as part of a vacation or live close by, you’ll experience the everchanging splendor of the gardens as each season offers a unique experience. Surrounded by our beautiful mountains and water, and together with the gardens and Bridge, we feature something special throughout the year. Our spring blooms, fairy gardens, and pumpkin people are some of our most popular features. Make plans to visit beginning November 17 and continuing until early January when the Bridge and gardens will be transformed into a Winter Wonderland.
Reflecting on 2022: Now is a great time to acknowledge what a remarkable year it has been. We are thrilled with the outpouring of support we’ve received for our plans to build an Education Center. We hope to break ground soon and look forward to the increased education and outreach opportunities the new building will present.
The media attention this year has been astounding. We were mentioned in Southern Living and The Laurel of Asheville magazines, covered by TV stations in both Charlotte and Raleigh, and featured on Ingles Open Road and WSPA’s Zip Trip Summer Series. We believe the media coverage has helped bring more visitors to the Bridge and Lake Lure, positively impacting our community.
We installed a Rainbow Bridge near our River’s Edge Dog Garden. This pet tribute has been tremendously popular, providing a place where families can honor their pets who have passed away.
We have expanded some of our walkways and added more seating throughout the gardens. There is no end of opportunities for visitors to get up close to our beautiful blooms or find a lovely bench to relax and enjoy the serenity of the gardens.
We’ve also enhanced our digital access. Thanks to a grant made possible by Rutherford County Tourism (TDA), we were able to completely redesign our website to become more informative and user friendly. Check out everything it offers at www.lakelurefloweringbridge.org.
It takes a lot of different skills and abilities to keep our gardens beautiful and thriving. Our group of volunteers brings a wealth of talent, diversity, and experience to what we do at the Bridge and behind the scenes. Please email us at email@example.com if you’d like more information about volunteering.
In addition to our volunteers, as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, we depend on donations and grant funding. We conducted two very successful fundraisers this year. In spring, we installed more than 50 new pathfinder bricks along our walkways that include personal sentiments or memorials. Our fall fundraiser, Another Bear Affair, auctioned 40 one-of-a-kind, hand-painted bears. Whether through a general donation or in response to our annual drive or one of these fundraisers, we thank you.
Looking Toward 2023: Reflecting on our wonderful year is certainly gratifying. We are excited for our future and expect 2023 to be an even bigger year. Next year marks our tenth anniversary and we’ve got some celebrating to do!
Our Education Center project is well underway. We were recent recipients of two very generous grants, and these monies will be applied to this building. We anticipate completing the Education Center and celebrating our tenth anniversary with much fun and many activities. We hope you’ll join us.
Thank you for a spectacular year at the LLFB! Maybe you visited, maybe you donated, or maybe you attended one of our classes. We appreciate your support of our beautiful Bridge and gardens, and we hope to see you again soon. Continue to watch our website and follow us on Facebook and Instagram for up-to-date information, or subscribe to our monthly newsletter via our website.
Flowering Bridge by the Numbers:
- More than 116,000 visitors in 2022 as of September 30
- 45 creative and dedicated volunteers
- 2000 plants and shrubs planted throughout the gardens
- >$80,000 raised for our new Education Center as of September 30
- Who’s following us? 7,759 on Facebook, 1,770 on Instagram, 610 Newsletter subscribers
Photo Credits: Alice Garrard