Sep 29, 2023
Visit Greater Parkersburg Convention Site
The Greater Parkersburg Convention and Visitors Bureau is hosting an event to celebrate the opening of Exhibition Flower Beds dedicated to supporting native plant pollinators. The event will take place at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 4 at Plants at the Point, a Collaborative Community Garden operated by the CVB and located adjacent to the Welcome Center in downtown Parkersburg. The project was funded with a $2,000 gift from the Rotary Club of Parkersburg.
According to Mark Lewis, President & CEO of the Greater Parkersburg CVB, the community is coming together in a big way to support native pollinators of all kinds. “I encourage everyone to join us for this celebration of the work to help save honey bees, native bees, butterflies, hummingbirds and other important North American pollinators,” said Lewis.
The plants for the beds were purchased from a local nursery, Native Roots Inc., which specializes in native wildflowers. The three exhibition beds were prepared and planted as a collaborative effort with assistance from the Wood County Master Gardeners Association, West Virginia University Agricultural and Natural Resources Extension Agent JJ Barrett, members of the Rotary Club of Parkersburg, the owners of Native Roots, and staff from the CVB. Assistance with the signage was provided by WVUP.
Pollinators are responsible for assisting over 80% of the world’s flowering plants to reproduce and are critically important for the health of ecosystems. Without pollinators our sources of food would be greatly diminished, stated Lewis who cited a Cornell University study indicating one-third of all the food we eat is the direct result of animal pollinators.
Lewis added, “These perennial flower beds will not only add beauty to the community gardens and enhance the experience of our tourism visitors but will provide the setting for educational presentations on the importance of native pollinators to the food chain on which we depend. Planting pollinator friendly plants is an important step that we can all take to help bees make a comeback.”
The raised beds that make up the garden were in disrepair when the CVB purchased the building in March of 2022. Rather than dismantle them, the Visitors Bureau decided to renovate them as part of its mission to create a vibrant community space in downtown Parkersburg. The Community Garden consists of 48 raised beds of varying sizes, which are available to the public to rent out for the growing season each year.
The mission of the Greater Parkersburg CVB is to generate economic growth for the Greater Parkersburg area through effective sales and marketing to the leisure, sports, group tour and meeting and conference markets.