The Driftwood Garden Club continued its time-honored tradition of planting trees on Arbor Day in cooperation with the North Myrtle Beach Parks and Recreation Department. Driftwood added a special twist to this Arbor Day by also dedicating its newest Blue Star Memorial Marker adorned by the new trees and garden bed. The Memorial Marker and two white Natchez Crape Myrtle trees were planted along with various shrubs and flowering plants at the North Myrtle Beach Park & Sports Complex adjacent to the Veterans Memorial.
This was Driftwood’s eighth Blue Star Memorial Marker; the markers honor the men and women of our past, present and future armed forces. The city has estimated that approximately 785,000 people annually pass through the park; the club wanted to place the trees and garden in close proximity to the Veterans Memorial to add beauty for the enjoyment of all including the veterans and their families who visit their memorial.
On Dec. 7, 2018, the club held its joint Blue Star Memorial Marker Dedication and Arbor Day Celebration at the site of the new marker and Crape Myrtles. Driftwood President Sandy Barker welcomed the crowd of more than 40 people including Garden Club of South Carolina (GCSC) President Donna Donnelly and her husband, Coastal District Director Allyson Hirsh and Co-Director Susan Carter, City Council members Bob Cavanaugh, Fred Coyne and Nikki Fontana, the Grand Strand Chapter of Blue Star Mothers, the NMB Tree Commission and the NMB Parks and Recreation Department Director John Bullard and members of his staff.
Taking part in the Blue Star Memorial Marker Dedication were Councilman Cavanaugh, the city’s coordinator for Veterans Events, American Legion Post 186 members, The Rev. William Stewart and John Pazoga, and the North Myrtle Beach Department of Public Safety Honor Guard. Gracing those in attendance with heartfelt renditions of the Star Spangled Banner and God Bless America was Marlisa Small.
Driftwood presented the Blue Star Memorial Marker to the city for its protection and as a symbol of love for our country. Driftwood presented the Crape Myrtle trees to the City for the beautification of our city and as a living symbol of our appreciation to those who have served, now serve and will serve our country.