Blue Heron landscape Design | 2010 April
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April 2010

29 Apr Ultimate Backyard Makeover 2010 – Honoring a Local Hero! Pt. 2

John Borovicka had donated much of his time to “Christmas in April”. On one project the crew could not finish the work on a particular house, so John went back on his own time, and finished the work by himself. The homeowner grateful for the extra effort John had shown on her behalf, offered to pay John for his work, but John declined, saying he was glad to be of help. Being of little means, the woman insisted on compensating John for his time so she paid what she could, a can of peaches, a bag of peanuts, and the coupons she had clipped from her newspaper that week.

These are the stories Linda Borovicka began to share with us as we began work on her backyard. Each story bringing a smile, and at the same, causing a sinking feeling that came from deep within. We have caught only a glimpse of the person John Borovicka was, but it was clear he was special.

Day one of the shoot was a mix of setting up camera shots and interviewing the principles. Our host, Fox 61’s Sarah Cody would be leading us through the week interviewing vendors, and checking in with me from time to time for updates on the project. My job is to create the overall layout of the project, schedule the work, apprise the camera crew of who they would be interviewing and filming each day, making sure materials arrive as needed, and keeping the Fox61 people up to date on the progress. Although it seems like a lot of work, my job has been easy, thanks to the fantastic efforts of each of the following parties involved;

Our Host Sarah checks here notes with two of our producers.

Dunning Sand and Gravel would be supplying all the hardscape materials. Readco management is supplying the labor needed to install the patio, grade and excavate, site cleanup, and just about everything else needed, including a couple of special projects at my request. More about those in a later post. Salem Country Gardens would supply the planting plan, the plants and the planting labor. Carefree Small Buildings a 10 x 12 shed. Giant Oak Power is supplying a Mower, and Big Y, food for the wrap party. We received a few last minute and surprise gifts, and we’ll find out about those later also.

Ben from Dunning Sand and Gravel chats with Drew from Readco about the upcoming week.

Our Director John, Checks the footage of the tree work.

Our job meeting the previous Friday with the principle contractors had gone well, and I had sensed that this group would be great team to work with. Not wanting to step on their generosity, I had laid out my ideas and rough schedule, and waited anxiously for Monday to arrive. What I found out, is that I had underestimated the generosity of this group. Here we were on day one, and already Dunning Sand and Gravel was dropping off a dumpster and a mini-excavator, and Readco had had called in Sullivan Tree Experts, to remove an oak that stood in the way of John’s patio (both companies had already kicked in more than they had pledged). I knew instantly that this would be an exciting week!

With the tree work finished and rain moving in, we cleaned up and headed home.

Check back in to follow our story, as we Honor a local hero from Vernon, CT!

I hope you find special people to build your team with!

Scott

www.blueheronlandscapes.com

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28 Apr Ultimate Backyard Makeover 2010 – Honoring a Local Hero!

This past Monday, we began shooting the second “WTIC Fox 61 Ultimate Backyard Makeover”. I was fortunate again this year to be asked to serve as landscape designer/project manager. We have a great group of vendors participating this year, and a very nice family to work for. The Borovicka’s of Vernon, CT. will receive a wonderful new backyard, but they have recently suffered a tragic loss. This is their story.

The recently finished addition.

John Borovicka was a master carpenter with the Carpenters Union, Local 43. He was a doting father to Bethany and Kimmie, father-in-Law to Sid, and loving husband to Linda. He plied his trade during the day building bridges and working on various construction projects throughout Connecticut for O&G Industries. On nights and weekends over the years, John built the house the family lived in, the deck and gazebo they dined and relaxed on, and landscaped the yard they played in. John’s efforts didn’t stop with the family home though, as he regularly helped out neighbors, friends and family with any project they needed help on. He volunteered with Christmas in April, his Church, drove the High School Band instruments on trips, and brought his daughters to dance class, even dancing with them every once in a while. John was proud family man, and a devoted community volunteer. And, unbeknownst to him, he was soon to be a grandfather. Last fall John began working on the last part of the yard.

The patio area.

After recently completing an addition in which they placed a sauna, John had intended to construct a patio and sitting wall just outside. He prepped the area, did some drainage work, and put away his tools as winter began to set in. The plan was to get right back at it this spring, but tragically in November, John lost his life in a workplace accident. The patio and steps would remain unfinished, the family would lose the center of their world, and the community would lose a hero.

Here is where our story begins, as Kimmie Borovicka napped on the couch with the TV on. She awoke to hear the announcer say something about a Backyard Makeover contest, but didn’t hear the details. She ran to tell her mother and sister, and after a thorough search, they found the Fox61 website and sent in a picture and an essay. All this, one week before the contest began.

Bethany, Linda, and Kimmie, outside the addition.

The Borovickas entry was selected as one of three finalists, and their story was posted on the website to allow fans to vote for the winner. After a week of voting the Borovickas, with over half of the vote, were declared the winners. In just two short weeks, the Borovickas, still grieving from their loss, went from wondering what they would do with this unfinished area, to welcoming in our crews to carry on John’s work. It is our hope that what we provide, will in some small way give them comfort as they remember a great man.

In upcoming posts, we’ll find out exactly what the Borovickas have won, meet the contractors that will finish the work John started, and create their Ultimate Backyard.

I hope you all have a hero to lean on,

Scott

www.blueheronlandscapes.com

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15 Apr Bloom Day for April 15, 2010 – Tax Day!

It’s Tax Day, and for most, a day of dread. What better way to brighten up one’s spirits, then with a Bloom Day post. It’s been a few months since we have been able to participate, but the snows have long since melted, the temperatures are climbing, and some welcome faces are starting to show themselves once again. Come and see what blooming at our house, and I hope it brightens your Tax Day!

Now please stop over at May Dreams Gardens To see what’s blooming there and in the many other Bloom Day bloggers gardens!

Have a great Tax Day!

Scott

www.blueheronlandscapes.com

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