Planters, America’s leading snack nut brand, has opened the first Planters Grove, a peanut-shaped urban park in New Orleans’ historic Central City. Designed to provide a natural, inspirational place for the community to enjoy, the Planters Grove was brought to life by Planters partner The Corps Network, the national member organization for Service and Conservation Corps, with its local member Corps, Limitless Vistas, Inc. and the Louisiana Green Corps/ARC of Greater New Orleans. The iconic Mr. Peanut, arriving in his new biodiesel Planters Nutmobile, will open the public green space with Corps members and community volunteers at noon CST.
“We’re proud to have worked with the wonderful people of Central City to plant some good in New Orleans,” said Jason Levine, senior director of marketing at Planters. “These parks were inspired by the community of nut growers who have been our namesake - planters.”
Central City Planters Grove: Ken Smith Designed, New Orleans Influenced
Renowned landscape architect Ken Smith designed the natural, green park at 2047 Felicity Street with strong input from the community. Part urban revitalization, part art, the Planters Grove is inspired with New Orleans influences found in locally-sourced reclaimed materials and native and local plants and flowers.
A windowpane display made of reclaimed windows from homes destroyed by Hurricane Katrina outlines the peanut-shaped park exterior. The windows, painted prominently in unique shades of local colors, allow a clear view into the park and provide a bold first impression from Simon Bolivar Avenue and Euterpe Street.
Additional features include:
• A statue of Mr. Peanut seated on a peanut-shaped bench greets visitors into the Planters Grove
• A boardwalk entrance at Simon Bolivar Avenue made of treated pine wood and featuring ceramic street tiles
• Sixteen 18-foot native bald cypress trees
• A bog garden and meadow growing a variety of local plants and flowers such as Swamp Lilies and White Prairie Glovers
• Recycled concrete pavement makes up a community-gathering spot called the Legume Plaza
• Common planting areas for families and youth to learn more about horticulture
• Colorful Adirondack chairs made of recycled materials
In coming weeks, the Planters Grove will feature additional sustainable elements such as solar lighting and a rainwater collection tank attached to a neighboring home.
“The Corps Network would like to thank Planters, our member Corps, community partners and the incredible people of Central City for helping us make this a reality,” said Sally Prouty, president and CEO at The Corps Network.
“We were excited to play a part in creating this Planters Grove,” said Patrick Barnes, founder of Limitless Vistas, Inc. “This natural park will not only be a place for the community to enjoy shared experiences, but will also serve as a teaching tool about the environment and local agriculture.”
The Corps Network's local member Corps will lead the maintenance, ongoing programming and seasonal planting of each Planters Grove with additional community partners including New Orleans Neighborhood Development Collaborative, Central City Partnership and Faubourg Lafayette Neighborhood Association. As part of Planters “Naturally Remarkable” tour, additional Planters Groves will be developed in 2011 in Washington, D.C., San Francisco and New York City.
To follow the Planters “Naturally Remarkable” tour, get exclusive updates and learn how to participate, please “Like” Mr. Peanut on Facebook at www.facebook.com/mrpeanut.