File photos by Howard Owens from the May 6, 2012 dedication of the Batavia Peace Garden.
Information from Barbara Ann Toal.
The untold story of the "History of the Batavia Peace Garden" and its colorful high-flying flags is now a book, written by Barbara Ann Toal, who cofounded the garden along with Paula Savage.
Toal, vice president of the Batavia Peace Garden Committee, was inspired to tell the compelling story of how this beautiful garden came to be part of Batavia’s history when plans for the 10th anniversary of its ground-breaking ceremony began to take shape earlier this year.
“I wanted people to hear the real story," Toal said. "It’s a fascinating one and our community deserves to know just how much we are connected to the world around us. We are the world headquarters for the International Peace Garden Foundation. That blows me away!
"Furthermore, all profits from the sale of this book will go toward the care and maintenance of the Batavia Peace Garden.”
Upon its completion, the official dedication ceremony took place on May 6, 2012, and scores of visitors from across nation, Canada and beyond attended the honors.
It was the first Peace Garden on the New York State Bicentennial Peace Garden Trail. It completed the last link in the chain of Peace Gardens that commemorate the accord between the United States of America and Canada since the War of 1812 ended.
Toal's book details the links to the International Peace Gardens worldwide and describes the selfless dedication of volunteers who worked tirelessly to make this dream a reality, and their vision for its future development and expansion.
She says curiosity seekers will be delighted to read the backstory of the international flags along Main Street, adjacent to the Holland Land Office Museum, that greet hundreds of local residents and visitors daily.
It's an interesting story, one that you will want to share with your friends and loved ones.
This book would be a nice addition for your home library, or a thoughtful gift for family and friends -- anyone who has a place in their heart for this small rural Western New York community that built an internationally recognized tribute to world peace.
Copies priced at $20 can be purchased exclusively at Oliver’s Candies, 211 W. Main St., Batavia, and the Sweet Life Country Store, 100 S. Main St., Elba, or online here, or by calling (585) 770-3046 or 343-2387.