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Niagara Hospice: Butterflies celebrate life

by jmaloni
Mon, Jun 4th 2012 07:00 am
Ben Preisch entertains a monarch butterfly from a previous Niagara Hospice Memorial Butterfly Release.
Ben Preisch entertains a monarch butterfly from a previous Niagara Hospice Memorial Butterfly Release.

Niagara Hospice will hold its ninth Memorial Butterfly Release from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, July 7, in the Memorial Gardens located at 4675 Sunset Drive, Lockport.

In many cultures, butterflies are recognized as universal symbols of faith and transformation, making them the perfect means to celebrate and remember the lives of loved ones. The event is open to the community, and families and individuals are invited to release butterflies in memory or in honor of someone special to them. In addition to the mass release, there will be activities for the whole family, including a bounce house, kids crafts and games, balloon art, face painting, and music by Step In Time. Light refreshments also will be available.

Special Events Coordinator Mandy Raff said more than 350 butterflies were released last year into the gardens by guests from throughout Western New York.

"We look forward to this event every year, because it brings families together, and it gives us an opportunity to celebrate with them as they remember people who were such an important part of their lives," she said.

Live monarch butterflies and sun catchers can be purchased for $25 each and, new this year, participants can start their own "Garden of Hope" by purchasing a butterfly milkweed plant called "Soulmate" for $40 each.

All proceeds from the event directly benefit Niagara Hospice patients and families. Live butterflies may be purchased by pre-order only and orders must be placed by Saturday, June 30. To order butterflies, hand-painted butterfly sun catchers, and Gardens of Hope, call Niagara Hospice at 280-0766 or visit the events page atwww.NiagaraHospice.org to make a secure online donation.

The butterfly release is sponsored in part by Register Graphics, Ulrich Development Company, Lockport Tops, Wrights Corners Tops and Ms. Sandy Sargent.

For more information, visit www.NiagaraHospice.org or call Hospice at 716-439-4417.

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