The Powell family and the staff at Garland Nursery love animals! There is a long history of animals at Garland Nursery. My great-grandmother, Corlie, had pet skunks named Fleur and Flower. Cats and dogs too numerous to mention have called the property their home. Numerous staff members have brought their pets out on visits. One former employee, Janet, now a nurse at the Lebanon hospital, started a wall of pets, mainly dogs. Photos with names (first and last) grace the door into our computer room. Some have gone onto animal heaven, while others are still here on earth. We welcome our customers pets, mainly dogs, to visit the nursery with their owners. Each one is given, with permission, a dog bone and a little scratch behind the ears. Many we know by name. I’m just hoping we know the owners by name, too!
For several years, we have had a fundraising event for charity. It has been during our Ladies Day Out. We have donated 10% of the product sales for that day to a selected charity. We have donated to Samaritan Health Services Contours program and The Old School (at the Farm Home). These causes that we have supported have had meaning to us. This year we are holding a Ladies Night Out and when we discussed who we would like to support, Safe Haven Humane Society quickly rose to the top of the list. As I wrote earlier, we all love animals. But there is an even more special reason to support Safe Haven. Erica adopted Heidi from Safe Haven many years ago. I think it was 15 years ago.
Erica purchased her first St. Bernard, whom she named Ally. Ally was a big, sweet dog. Thinking that Ally could use a sister, Erica visited Safe Haven. There she found a dog with whom she really fell in love, Heidi. Heidi is a Welsh Corgie/Border Collie mix. Erica had been hoping to adopt another dog by Thanksgiving, but someone else had a “hold” on Heidi. Erica kept calling to see if Heidi was available. Finally, when the other family decided against adopting Heidi, Safe Haven phoned Erica. Erica immediately rushed over to Safe Haven and adopted her. When Heidi first came to live with Erica, she was slightly traumatized and did what many dogs do when left alone. She chewed and chewed and chewed. A lot of love and a little bitter apple spray slowly corrected that habit. Heidi and Ally became sisters and best friends. Erica was living in a home near highway 34 at that time. Heidi and Ally had quite a few adventures together, including a break-out and journey along Highway 34. Erica was working in her yard and the gate was open. Heidi decided that was a good opportunity to go sightseeing. She and Ally trotted across a farm field and were walking along Highway 34 when a kind passerby picked them up and took them to a nearby vet clinic. Erica had noticed they were missing and ran after them but was too far away. She received a call from the vet clinic as she was getting into her car to go find them. Within a year they all moved to the nursery. Heidi has been her Mom’s shadow since then. She has helped nurture and train 2 more St. Bernards, including the current resident St. Bernard, Corlie, who turned 9 last week. The amazing thing is that Heidi is 17. Erica says Heidi is “the best dog ever!” When Jim Kaminskas entered the picture a few years ago, Heidi switched her adoration from Erica to Jim. She now rarely leaves Jim’s side and really enjoys rides into town and the occasional McDonald’s hamburger. (She’s 17, they’re figuring it can’t do her any harm).
Safe Haven Humane Society has been serving our community for 40 years. They are a no-kill shelter whose goal is “to find permanent, loving homes for all animals entrusted to our care.” Their mission is to “help our communities’ residents be the best “humane” beings they can be by providing: Compassionate temporary shelter care; healthy adoptable animals; information, understanding and education; spay and neuter programs, instead of euthanasia, for population control.” Safe Haven does not receive any tax dollars or government funding. They are a limited admission shelter. Once the shelter is full, no new animals are accepted. The animals may remain with them for as long as necessary. The goal is to help the animals find their forever home. Safe Haven offers training classes as well. You can check out all their services at www.safehavenhumane.org.
This year, Garland Nursery is holding a Ladies Night Out event on Friday, November 21st from 4-7pm. Tickets for the event are $25 and must be purchased by the end of this Friday, November 14th. There will be yummy food, great gifts and specials that night for attendees. Garland Nursery will donate 10% of all product sales from that night to Safe Haven. In addition, we are extending the time period of donation to include the following day, Saturday, November 22nd, which is our holiday open house. We hope to see you at one of the events, as we pledge to donate to a charity near and dear to our hearts.