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East Side Garden Walk will feature record number of gardens

With more than 70 participating gardens, Saturday's East Side Garden Walk will be its largest yet.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Even after a long day of work, Iris Costner looks forward to gardening in her front, back, and side yards.

"I come in the backyard and deadheading is extremely therapeutic to me, it's not a chore. The garden offers this amazing peaceable, therapeutic opportunity," she told 2 On Your Side. 

Costner's garden is one of the seventy or so that are taking part in this year's East Side Garden Walk on Saturday, July 17th from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Visitors are invited to stroll, bike, or drive through the event, which is the biggest one yet. 

"We started in 2018 with I believe 23, so even despite the pandemic and not being able to have an in person tour for 2020, we still grew," Co-Chair Sam White told 2 On Your Side. 

White says the garden walk doesn't just celebrate and connect the East Side. It's also significant because it gives the community a way to take control of the narrative of their neighborhood. 

"You know a lot of the news about our neighborhood is negative some people hold some stereotypes about it's not a safe neighborhood it's not a cared for neighborhood," she said. "Well you come into my garden, you come into Iris' garden, and any one of the other gardens on this walk. You'll see the amount of love that we have for our neighborhood, for our community, and I would say that many of the people who are gardening in this tour are also doing things inside the community to uplift it and raise this community up."

 For a map of participating homes, stop by the Central Library in downtown Buffalo, the Foundry on Northhampton Street, or download and print here