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Central Square, NY
Project Bloom is a nonprofit, all volunteer project with
a mission of making Central Square a nicer place to live. Since then, Project
Bloom has built and maintained planters, installed over twenty benches, and has
planted trees throughout the village. Project Bloom has replaced and multiplied
the village Christmas decorations, annually held a plant swap, perennial plant
and poinsettia sale, and hosted workshops to assist home gardeners. All projects
are funded by donations from citizens and local groups.
The mission of Project Bloom is to make Central Square a nicer place to live by adding benches, trees and flowers, and raising the awareness of Central Square citizens about keeping the village beautiful.
According to notes Project Bloom may have had its beginnings as early as May 1984. However the more widely accepted story is that in 1993, a couple of friends took a walk in the village, and noticed something which disturbed them. The village just wasn't attractive any more. There were attractive spots, and well cared for areas, but there seemed to be a lack of shared embellishments and a loss of community pride.
The two developed a plan to improve the village and found others willing to support their idea. Residents, businesses and neighbors responded with interest and support. Project Bloom started with funding from tax deductible donations and donated time. It maintains a large and flexible list of members who meet at irregular intervals, in informal settings to discuss concerns, ideas, project planning and maintenance. In the early days Project Bloom was attached to the Village of Central Square. In April 2001 they separated and Project Bloom became incorporated. However, Project Bloom and the Village still work together closely.
The founders of Project Bloom recognized that beauty is fulfilling and healing in its many forms. People are drawn to it and enriched by it. People are comforted, protected and creatively stimulated by the beauty they encounter. These attributes are a part of the positive forces people need to counter the stress in their daily lives. Restoring beauty to Central Square is the gift we can give to ourselves and to others.