Many towns in America are located along busy highways. Pawling though, sits pretty along Charles Colman Boulevard, away from Route 22, with Village access to the Metro North Railroad. Our town is now adorned with a true Village Green. The Green’s many benches beckon to residents and visitors to stop and rest for a spell, to take a few moments away from busy lives and hectic schedules.
Many hands are at work in Pawling to make our community beautiful. A town’s beautification is accomplished when individuals and groups step forward to volunteer their time and talents to creatively improve their community. The Chamber of Commerce, the Pawling Community Foundation, and the Pawling Garden Club all play a role in beautification. The two sign flower beds along Route 22 as well as the new sign and plantings across from McGrath’s Tavern welcome visitors and residents alike to Pawling. These sign beds, the container plantings in the median of Charles Colman Boulevard and along Memorial Avenue, as well as the plantings at the Town Hall are paid for by Chamber of Commerce funds and are planted and maintained by Steve Parrino, owner of Parrino’s Greenhouses and Garden Center. The Village of Pawling graciously waters all the plantings throughout the Village keeping the flowers looking vibrant and healthy throughout the growing season.
The Pawling Garden Club for many years planted and maintained the Village flowers. As our town has grown, the size and scope of village beautification has become too large for the Club to accomplish alone. The Garden Club has a proud history of beautification in Pawling. Crab apple trees were planted at Coulter Avenue and Route 22, an oak tree was planted at the Town Hall, and shrubs were planted in containers directly in front of Town Hall. Flower beds and trees were planted in the park between McKinney & Doyle and the Dutcher House. The front garden at the Pawling Free Library was created, evergreen trees were planted in the entrance circle at Pawling High School, and thousands of daffodils have been planted throughout Pawling. It is the Club’s hope that Pawling will become known for its golden array of daffodils each spring.
The Pawling Garden Club will continue its Village beautification by undertaking the planting and care of shrubs and flowers at the Veteran’s Memorial, which is dedicated to the memory of “those who paid for our freedom with their lives.” This memorial was relocated to the new Village Green with the help of the American Legion’s past Commander, Jerry Christiansen, who spearheaded the project. The garden club will work closely with American Legion Commander Lou Musella to ensure the beautification of this venerable memorial.
Have you noticed the flowers in the window boxes at the Pawling Post Office? For many years, these boxes were lovingly tended by Garden cub member, Rita Kikillus, who recently moved to Washington State. Two new caretakers have stepped forward to continue Rita’s tradition. Staci and Joe Franco, Pawling residents for many years, are the new volunteer gardeners at Pawling’s Post Office.
What makes Pawling beautiful? The next time you are in the Village, take a moment to sit for a while and notice the beauty around you–the trees and shrubs growing strong and green in the median, the striking cannas in the planters, the colorful flowers in the window boxes and the stately oak trees along Memorial Avenue. These trees were planted in 1945 to honor the Pawling men who gave their lives in the service of our country during World War II.
The words “charming” and “quaint” are often overused, but I think, in Pawling’s case, the words are an apt description of the essence, beauty, and the unique qualities of our town.