Spruce Up Week for Veterans Memorial Circle: May 15-22, 2021

Planting for this year’s beautification of Veterans Memorial Circle will be done over four sessions in a week’s time:

From Saturday May 15, 2021 to Saturday, May 22, 2021, with daylong sessions on these Saturdays, a morning session on Monday, May 17, and an evening session on Wednesday, May 19.

For the first three planting sessions – on May 15, May 17 and May 19 – we will be meeting at the city parking lot at the SE quadrant of the Main/Auburn roundabout.

For the fourth planting session – on May 22 – we will be meeting at the NE quadrant of the roundabout, in front of Greenwood Cemetery. (That Saturday is the opening day of North End City Market.)

What to do when you arrive

We (the organizers) will be providing tools, safety vests, and the plants. The only thing we need volunteers to bring is gloves.

Once you sign in, you will be assigned to a team. “Signing in” means presenting us with a signed copy of the City of Rockford’s hold harmless form, which you can download here, or taking a moment to sign a copy of this form when you arrive. If you are volunteering with a child or a teen younger than 18, we will need a form signed by their parent or guardian.

Teams will be planting in the following areas:

  • fronts of the monument walls
  • backs of the monument walls
  • end caps
  • north median strip
  • south median strip
  • entrance to the city parking lot
  • in front of the North End businesses on Main Street

Please note that the above list does not include the very center of the circle. For safety reasons, this area will be planted by a team of city workers – on their own time, when they will be able to provide their own traffic protection.

If you want to put a team together (such as with family members, co-workers, or fellow members of a community organization), please let us know in advance so that we can make sure you work in unison. Email project manager Ernie Redfern at ernie@rockfordveteranscircle.org or call/text Ernie at (312) 404-6452.

Other ways to help

If you aren’t available on these dates but still would like to help, please consider:

  • Adopting one of the 25 sidewalk flowerbeds on Auburn Street between the Rock River and Veterans Memorial Circle. Beautification of these 4- by 12-foot plots is also part of our project. For details, email Helen Redfern at helen@rockfordveteranscircle.org or call/text Helen at (708) 420-0800.
  • Helping us weed. For this maintenance activity, we will need helpers all through the summer. You can do this either on your own time or with teams that will be gathering regularly. For details on volunteering with weeding, email Ernie Redfern at ernie@rockfordveteranscircle.org or call/text Ernie at (312) 404-6452.
  • Donating to help us buy more plants. You can send us a check or contribute online. For details on both ways to donate, click here.
  • Spreading the word about our project. You can find us both on Facebook and on Instagram. We’d much appreciate you following us and sharing our posts.