Labyrinth continues to develop

May 18, 2023, 2:21 pm
Sierra D'Souza Butts

Trees were planted at the Labyrinth in the Town of Moosomin on Sunday in preparation for Communities in Bloom. The labyrinth was a recent addition to the community in the summer of 2021, and has been well-used by kids and people in the area.

Every year a new addition has been made to the labyrinth. This year, 10 trees were planted around the labyrinth in memory of a loved one.

The labyrinth is located near the South Cemetery in Moosomin, beside the community gardens, and has been there since 2021.

Organizer Carol Adair said they planted the trees on May 14 in preparation for Communities in Bloom, as the labyrinth is one of the stations picked to represent Moosomin.

“The trees will really highlight the labyrinth. I know it’s going to be one of the 23 spots the judges look at in Communities in Bloom,” said Adair.

“It will be one of their stations. You’re not going to get the committee that day to go to every spot so you better pick out your most unique ones, and personally, I think the labyrinth is unique.

“They’ve got the park, the golf course and other places, but not every community is going to have a labyrinth. We plan to get some flowers there too.”

On Sunday, Adair and a few students from McNaughton High School planted the trees at the park.

The students helped dig and plant trees as part of their environmental science class at McNaughton School.

High school students help plant trees at labyrinth
Carli Sweeting, one of the teachers of the environmental science class at McNaughton High School, said encouraging students to participate in community projects is a great addition to their curriculum.

“I attended the Communities in Bloom meeting, myself and another teacher, the two of us teach an environmental science class at McNaughton,” Sweeting said.

“What we’ve done is incorporated the Communities in Bloom program into their final project for their course.

“Part of it is also research which falls on the evaluation form of Communities in Bloom because it applies a lot of the outcomes of environmental science. We’re having the students do a little bit of research on aspects of Moosomin and seeing how some of their ideas could apply.

“Another component is each of them have to volunteer six hours of their time towards a Community in Bloom project within the community.

“We had some boys who went out there to help with the trees, and we’ll have some other students helping with other parts of the Communities in Bloom project once everyone gets organized.”

Most of the students taking the environmental science class are Grade 10 students, and a few are Grade 11 and Grade 12 students.

Sweeting explained why teachers at the school thought it was a good idea to include the Communities in Bloom project as part of the curriculum for the course.

“We always try to find ways to get the school involved with the community,” she said.

“We think it’s an important aspect to have the kids understand the importance of volunteering, and the importance of being a part of the community.

“Our community offers a lot to our young people so I think it’s important that we teach our kids how to give back, and this is just one aspect that we need everyone involved to make this happen, not only for the contest, but to give back to the community in general.

“This is not the first time the kids have gone out and done it with the course, but this is the first time we put full force to everyone volunteering into a big project like this.”

With the labyrinth being well-used, Adair said she is happy to see people’s involvement especially students.

She said people outside of Moosomin have come to use the town’s labyrinth as well.

“There was a lady last Saturday who contacted me from Estevan. I thought she found out about the labyrinth through the town, but she found it on the World-Wide Labyrinth finder and she knew to contact me,” Adair said.

“The lady asked if anyone could come and take a look at the labyrinth, and I said yes, it’s open to the public. She does a walk for peace on World Labyrinth Day which is on May 6.

“She said she wanted to walk the labyrinth as her walk for peace. She’s never done it before, so she met me there and I called another friend, then the three of us walked at 1 p.m. that day.

“Also last year a few ladies from Caryle came down here to see it. Also I think the kids from the school are using it a lot more, it’s nice to see.”

How did the idea for a labyrinth come about?
The labyrinth was first placed in the Town of Moosomin during the summer of 2021.

The idea for having a labyrinth in the community came about when Adair experienced one in another community that she was visiting.

“Around the 2000s I used to go to retreats at St. Michael’s in Lumsden and at that, they have a labyrinth,” she said.

“When you were there on the retreat you would take a walk around the labyrinth and it was just so neat.

“I always thought wouldn’t it be neat for our community to have that,” said Adair.

“I had mentioned it over the years to different people, but that year (2020) our minister Carolyn Woodal at the Bethel United Church said I could put one inside the church. So, we had one in there and we walked it. We had candles around it too.

“A few people in town did come, and at that time, it was the winter and I reached out to the economic development officer at the time, Greg Gillespie. I asked if there was any way the town could use a labyrinth.

“I told him I think it would be great for economic attraction, and he said it sounded like a good idea.

“The labyrinth is based on the same one in Chartres from France, that is where the original labyrinth is.”

Adair said walking the labyrinth could have different meanings to everyone.

She spoke about what the labyrinth means to her.

“This one here in Moosomin, when you walk in it you may think you’re going and never going to get out, it has a lot of symbolism,” she said.

“It’s like the journey in life where you think you’re getting to your goal, and next thing you know you’re way at the edge. Then you don’t have faith and think you’re never going to be able to get out of here, but if you keep following the path and keep doing the right thing, the next right thing, then you’re going to get to your goal.

“A lot of people use the symbol at the centre as a committment. I know at Lumsden they would have teams that come in and let’s say they would give up smoking, they leave their packages of cigarettes there in the middle, or if they’re walking for another person they’ll leave something in memory of that person.”

Adair said she hopes to add a walking path, picnic tables and other park facilities to the labyrinth in the nearby future.