The “McGraw Family Garden of the Senses,” at Heritage Museums & Gardens, the first wellness garden on Cape Cod, is now open to the public after a ribbon cutting ceremony held during the organization’s Gala on Saturday, July 13.
Situated behind Heritage’s Old East Windmill, the new garden was designed by the internationally recognized award winning firm Dirtworks Landscape Architecture PC. The garden will provide universal access and programs for those with a range of physical and mental disabilities. The garden location was chosen to provide expansive new vistas that have rarely been seen by visitors before. Visitors will wind their way through scenic landscapes on walkways designed to bypass challenging hilly terrain, providing easier access to the Flume Fountain.
“The McGraw Family Garden of the Senses expresses Heritage Museums & Gardens’ goal to provide experiences that are welcoming to all” notes Heritage President and CEO Anne Scott-Putney. “We are profoundly grateful for the leadership of Dave and Missy McGraw whose philanthropic commitment to health healing and access for people with disabilities is well known. Their values are such a perfect match with the purpose of this garden.”
Stretching across two acres of property, the garden offers a rich, relaxing experience designed to appeal to the senses of every visitor, regardless of age or ability. Visitors can see, touch and smell the plants in a variety of garden spaces featuring over 25,000 new plants, enjoy the peaceful sounds created by new water features, or gaze at the forest vistas from the accessible boardwalk.
David Kamp, a principal at Dirtworks, has dedicated his career to exploring how design with nature can improve health. David used the design in this garden to help people make a connection to nature. Using that personal connection as inspiration he has also looked at larger scales of health – how design with nature can improve community health and environmental health. Visitors will be able to engage in the garden which also offers a range of therapeutic attributes, including range of motion and cognitive skills. Sensitive to the discrete needs of each visitor, the garden will provide important health and wellness benefits to all visitors. Heritage Museums & Gardens will be working with several Cape organizations serving people with disabilities and other health challenges to welcome their groups or individual clients to explore the McGraw Family Garden of the Senses at their own pace and in their own time.
Heritage is grateful for the support of the 2019 season sponsors, the Arbella Insurance Foundation and Cape Cod 5. The 2019 season runs from through October 14. Open daily, 10 am-5 pm. More information is available online at heritagemuseumsandgardens.org or by calling 508-888-3300.