From humble beginnings 10 years ago, Take Pride Winnipeg’s annual Winnipeg in Bloom — aka Flower Power — contest has blossomed.
Over 500 properties were entered in this year’s contest.
All the entries contribute to the city’s successful participation in the national Communities in Bloom contest. Winnipeg won the national contest in 1995, 2001 and 2005.
This year, there were seven categories: residential property, business national chain, business independent, apartment blocks and condominiums, community effort, business improvement zone, and previous winner residential (first-place winners in each area for 2005 and 2006 were placed in this category).
The contest was open only to front yard properties within City of Winnipeg municipal boundaries.
Although Take Pride Winnipeg has taken over the reins of the contest started by the WinnipegREALTORS® Association 10 years ago, it remains heavily involved by sponsoring two special awards.
Each year, WinnipegREALTORS® sponsors a special curb appeal award (for both the Winnipeg in Bloom and Winnipeg in Lights contests) that is nominated and selected by members of the 104-year-old association. The association’s commercial division this year also created a new award called Best Blooming Business.
Through the efforts of Take Pride Winnipeg’s volunteer board and staff, this year there were more sponsors and entries. Title sponsor Home Depot has also been a driving force behind the success of the contest.
On Saturday, August 18 at Rainbow Stage, nearly 600 avid Winnipeg in Bloom participants attended the contest’s awards presentations — a record turnout in a year that had a record number of entries.
City Councillor Grant Nordman, who sits on Take Pride Winnipeg’s board, praised the contestants whose property beautification has also motivated public works staff to do more planting to enhance city parks and boulevards.
Hannon Bell, a volunteer judge and REALTOR® who has for years been
involved with Take Pride Winnipeg,
presented the WinnipegREALTORS® curb appeal award to the owner of 904 McMillan Ave.
“On the boulevard, two majestic elms with a circular base of large rocks and stones containing various varieties of leafy plants welcomes you to a sight of wonder,” said Bell, describing the winning entry.
“Whether you are walking or driving, the eye is immediately drawn to the wonderful and artistic array and arrangement of plants of varying heights, large potted plants and flowers situated on the stone-like patio that makes up the unique front yard. Trellises, window boxes, fountains and careful attention to detail definitely add to the curb appeal. It’s a visual delight!” he added.
The Best Blooming Business award, sponsored by WinnipegREALTORS® commercial division, went to Terracon Business Park off Dugald Road in east Winnipeg. Terracon Business Park was also the independent business winner for its respective area of the city. Every area winner in the commercial category of the contest was eligible for the Best Blooming Business award.
WinnipegREALTORS® president Wes Schollenberg, who presented the Best Blooming Business award, acknowledged the efforts made by the residential and business participants to make Winnipeg a beautiful city. “When it comes time for REALTORS® to market homes, their job is made easier when homeowners show pride in their properties,” he added. “Of course, their collective effort makes the entire city look better.”
Deciding the winning entries required a significant effort from the 47 volunteer judges. Karen Tereck, a REALTOR® on the Take Pride Winnipeg board, said viewing and taking photos of the properties in the area she judged took over seven hours.