Sarnia newest attraction is a quiet, contemplative spot in the centre of the city.
A ceremony last week in Germain Park drew more than 100 people to the official opening of Cox Gardens.
The 2.5-acre site is located near the restored Golden Hawk aircraft memorial and features meandering pathways that connect to several venues perfect for yoga, tai chi or meditation.
A nearby amphitheatre is also ready for small outdoor summer concerts organized through the Strangway Centre.
The gardens are a gift from philanthropist Norma Cox, who donated $825,000 for their creation. Since moving to moved to Sarnia from the U.S. more than 40 years ago she has given millions of dollars to city projects, often anonymously.
The centrepiece is a ‘garden within a garden’ containing more then 1,200 marigolds in honour of Cox’s mother, Mary Ann Clarke, whose favourite flowers were marigolds.
Cox said she approached the city to inquire about a possible garden and “one thing led to another.”
“I love every bit of it,” she told the assembly of residents, city staff and dignitaries.
An emotional Mayor Mike Bradley said Cox’s gracious gift is another example of her love for the city.
“She’s a wonderful benefactor, and more than that, a great citizen,” he said.