Labyrinth falls short on funding but future plans remain strong
The construction of the new labyrinth, started this past May by members of the local Blair community and the Woodmoor Garden Club, is only halfway complete, with little funding left. The labyrinth, which was originally to be completed before the start of the coming school year, is located in the open space outside the art wing on the Colesville Road side.
"We really underestimated the amount of time and labor the construction of the labyrinth requires," said Linda Rogers, president of the Woodmoor Garden Club, who has spent her summer working on the project. Even with the looming worry of funding and available time, Rogers estimates the labyrinth's completion in late September.
Despite the donations given to the labyrinth project from organizations such as the Blair PTSA, Blair's beautification committee, the Woodmoor Garden Club, and Blair's spirit club, all funds have dried up. At most, Rogers claims the labyrinth needs about $900 to assure its completion.
While waiting for more grants, Rogers refuses to let the project remain incomplete. According to Rogers, various members of the community are already starting to take money out of their own pockets to contribute to the labyrinth fund and are donating tools to the project.
The high level of enthusiasm from the local Four Corners and Blair community remains strong throughout the entire construction process, so Rogers is confident that more funding will soon arrive. Rogers proclaims, "Everyone has really been amazingly supportive. People from all over the area are always stopping by and asking questions about the labyrinth. Every visitor has just been so encouraging and interested in the project."
The idea to design and pursue the creation of a labyrinth at Blair came to Rogers after participating in a labyrinth workshop five years ago at the Kennedy Kreiger Institution during a stressful time in her life. Rogers says that taking simple walks in the labyrinth was "just so helpful in relieving stress. It was such a positive experience." After her memorable experience with the workshop, Rogers dreamed of one day constructing a labyrinth in her own community. Although multiple churches and hospitals have labyrinths, Rogers proudly exclaims, "Blair is one of the first high schools in [the] district to have one."
Blair's labyrinth was built to provide both school and community members an alternative way to relieve stress. The design of a labyrinth is a circular maze-like path that eventually leads to the center. A labyrinth has no dead ends or tricky curves to provide the participant with a proper environment and opportunity to reflect and relax.
In designing the model, Rogers constructed a low maintenance pattern without any professional help or opinion, merely taking inspirations from the Cartres Cathedral's 11-circuit path and 4-foot center labyrinth in Cartres, France.
After the construction of the medium-sized labyrinth, Roger's expectations for the labyrinth don't stop there. When all bricks have been properly impounded into the ground, Rogers has big plans for the still-barren area surrounding the labyrinth. Rogers states she wants to "plant a variety of plants and shrubbery…[and incorporate] benches donated by the Blair spirit club in the last small patch of abandoned flat land on the Blair campus."
Rogers hopes that the construction of this labyrinth will go far beyond her expectations in its contributions to the school and community. "With Blair being such a community-based and diverse school, I think having a labyrinth speaks to the uniqueness of the workplace and [the] valuable community-school relationship."
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