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New Canton butterfly garden blooms with color

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CANTON — The butterfly garden outside the E.J. Noble Medical Complex already is bursting with colorful flowers and drawing praise from visitors.

Shaped like a butterfly, the garden features a peaceful walkway, a small waterfall and variety of perennial flowers and shrubbery.

Created last summer by members of the E.J. Noble Hospital Guild and other volunteers, the garden has flourished in just one year.

It decorates the front of the medical complex, 80 E. Main St., which was expanded last year to provide updated medical office space for physicians and other health care services.

The project was led by guild member Cynthia Quackenbush, who has been on a mission to protect the dwindling number of monarch butterflies in the north country.

David B. Acker, Canton-Potsdam Hospital administrator, was among those who gathered for a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday evening that featured refreshments, music and door prizes.

“No one could have imagined a garden this beautiful,” Mr. Acker said. “This is just a beautiful, beautiful addition.”

He had special praise for Mrs. Quackenbush, who spent “countless hours” planning the project and making sure it came to fruition.

“She inspires and she gets done what she sets her mind to,” Mr. Acker said.

He thanked the guild and its volunteers for showing community leadership and raising approximately $200,000 for the hospital and the medical center project during the past five years.

“By setting that example, they’ve inspired others to support the renovation and expansion of this building,” Mr. Acker said.

Wearing a scarf printed with butterflies, Mrs. Quackenbush thanked her husband, Arthur J., and several others for their support and help with the garden project.

Guild President Judy Chase described the garden project as “a labor of love” that provides a tranquil place for medical patients, which may contribute to better health outcomes.

“Not only have we created a gorgeous green space, but we are helping the plight of the monarch butterfly,” she said.

Mrs. Chase also credited Mrs. Quackenbush for leading the way.

“She had the vision, passion and determination to create this lovely place. There were obstacles along the way, but she persevered,” Mrs. Chase said.

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