Plant enthusiasts flock to Kennedy Park for second annual event – ​​Times News Online

Published on August 30, 2022 at 12:30 p.m.

Notorious BIG was in the park.

Three women, who named themselves after the late rapper, were one of the bands at the second annual Plant Fest at Kennedy Park in Lansford on Saturday.

The fun trio wore T-shirts with their organization – Notorious BIG – written on them.

The women, Jodi Cruver, Betsy Maholick and Susan Assman, all from Lehighton, say the BIG stands for “Blooming Idiots Guild”.

The back of the shirts proclaims that they are “plant lovers”.

Maholick said BIG had been together for about three years. They each have gardens and enjoy growing plants. She said they attend various festivals and other events “to raise money to go to the beach.”

Notorious BIG had a wide variety of plants for sale and offered green thumb tips to those who stopped by their stall.

Several hundred people attended Saturday’s event, held last year in Andrews.

Event co-ordinator Amy Wood said it was because of Lansford’s Save the Pool committee, in particular Gwyn Collevechio, that the event moved to Lansford this year. Wood said the move was good since Kennedy Park is in town and along a busy highway.

“Last year it seemed like we were in the middle of nowhere,” she said, adding that the festival was better attended this year.

Wood is president of Carbon County Plant People, an organization that’s been around for about three years and is the sponsor of Plant Fest. She said Plant People has about 3,000 members, including some as far away as Philadelphia.

Nearly three dozen vendors were present at this year’s festival, lining both sides of the park with tents and tables. Several vendors were local non-profit organizations such as the Mahoning Valley Lions Club and the Weatherly Rotary Club. Others have traveled great distances. Wood said a New Jersey salesman spent the weekend at a Jim Thorpe hotel.

Plants were the dominant product, but there were also food and drink stalls.

Several musicians enlivened the day.

Plant Fest had all kinds of plants for sale, ranging from standard spider plants and ferns to exotic plants such as Hindu rope hoya and tricolor red-spotted sangorian.

One of the vendors of rare and uncommon greenery was The Magic Plant Bus from Guttatium Farms in Stroudsburg.

The Magic Plant Bus was a white minivan filled with an assortment of plants to view or buy. Jillian Phillips, who brought the display, also manned a booth.

For the children there was face painting and other activities.

Bruce Markovich, chairman of Lansford Borough Council, estimated that around 500 people attended Plant Fest. He said he was thrilled the folks at the Carbon County plant chose Kennedy Park and “we look forward to being there again next year.”

“We’ve been trying to get grants to fix the grounds for a long time and one of the things we’re asked is how many people are using the park,” Markovich said. “With events like this with several hundred people in attendance, that could help us.”

Members of the Notorious BIG plant group, left to right, Jodi Cruver, Betsy Maholick and Susan Assman, all of Lehighton, sold their plants at Saturday’s Plant Fest in Lansford.

Brookelynn Frets, 8, from Lansford, has a cheetah painted on her face by Amanda Zellers, from Kunkletown, at Plant Fest.

Hundreds of people attended Saturday’s Plant Fest in Lansford’s Kennedy Park.