The Parade Path…a Journey Back in Time
The Redding Parade Path is a public garden, run by local volunteers and supported by donors, begun in 2003 on the periphery of Redding’s historic Town Green.
Three centuries ago, Redding’s founding fathers organized their local militia on what is now Redding Town Green. A Parade Ground, as it was known, was at the center of practically every colonial town. A portion of the original ten acre lot is still used as a town gathering place. The Parade Path was created on the neglected periphery of this space in 2003 in an effort to highlight this piece of Redding’s rich history.
Over the past 20 years, the garden has matured into a botanical walk into the past, with native and introduced plantings progressing back from the 1900s to the Revolutionary Era. Each variety of plant is identified by a botanical label which also gives the date of introduction of that plant to this part of New England. The Parade Path is used by the Redding schools for history and botany tours as well as a site for the yearly Mark Twain Library Story Walk. It is much used and admired at every summer Concert on the Green, It is recognized in the Garden Conservancy Open Days scheme as a public and historic garden. Although not a Redding Garden Club project, the Club was recognized by the Federated Garden Clubs of America for their contributions to the Parade Path. The many donated trees, benches and other named gifts in the garden honor those dedicated and selfless residents of Redding who have worked tirelessly to preserve the uniqueness of our town. There are also many personal dedications. Now that the length of the stone Path is complete, end to end (from Redding Town Hall to the Redding Police Station) it is consistently utilized as a walking path or a place of contemplation, every day of the year.
The Parade Path is a community-building project to create and maintain a garden on a previously neglected space for the benefit of the local residents; to provide a shared public place for memorial donations for dedicated and loved community members; to respect and highlight the history of the town green; and to create a botanical and historical resource of 400 years of ornamental and native plants available as an educational inspiration to schools, colleges, garden clubs and master gardener programs. We practice and promote integrated pest management, use of organic gardening methods and materials and conservation of water use.
The 100 original contributors to the Parade Path showed both generosity and pioneering spirit in their willingness to support a project that was still a seed. Recently the organizers asked for their renewed support and for support from new donors.
The Parade Path received a generous donation from Meadow Ridge Life Care Retirement Community in the form of a supporting grant for $2500. The plaque recognizing this donation has been placed on one of three native boulders installed in the lawn near the group of apple trees. In spring 2008 renewal of support and new gifts were received including a gift from a Benefactor of $5000 towards ongoing maintenance and addition of new plant material.
Donations payable to “The Parade Path” can be mailed to: Parade Path, P.O. Box 1028, 100 Hill Road, Redding, CT 06875.
Please consider becoming an annual Parade Path supporter or joining a team of volunteers to maintain this resource for the enjoyment of the community.
Annual Supporter: ___$25-$50
Guardian of Liberty Named Gift Opportunities and Wish List:
Gifts of $1,000 or more will be personalized on the path. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss a specific donation.
Weeping Cherry ___$350
Lilacs, Rose of Sharon, Forsythia ___$450
Staghorn Sumac, Witch Hazel, Summer Sweet ___$500
Mountain Laurels ___$500
Native Specimens ___$1000
Garden Steward: Irrigation system ___$1000
Beautification grant: soil, tree trimming, mulching, etc. ___$1500
Path Bench ___$3000
Harvest table ___$5000+
Benefactor: complete walking path in front of garden
Upcoming Events and Activities at the Parade Path
Please come any day for a self guided walk. Please help maintain the garden by removing dandelions or other obvious weeds from the beds and gravel paths. Volunteer work sessions are held throughout the year for stone wall repair work plus weeding, mulching and planting spring and fall annuals and new herbs and bulbs. Please call or email to discuss good dates when you could join us. You will need to bring work gloves and your choice of tool or leaf bag for weeds, depending on your choice of activity.
Etched Redding 1767 pilsner glasses are available for sale in Town Hall Selectman’s Office. Please call first to make sure there is enough in supply! 203-938-2002 (ext. 1).
Parade Path Coordinator
Parade Path Donations
P.O. Box 1028, 100 Hill Road
Redding, CT 06897