Garden club donates new plaque for statue


Staff report

YOUNGSTOWN

The Mignonette Garden Club recently donated a new plaque for the statue that can be found to the right of the paved walkway at the steps to the Shade Garden in Fellows Riverside Gardens at Mill Creek MetroParks. The statue was a gift from William Rabel and the Mignonette Garden Club in 1964 in memory of his wife, Dina Rabel. The plaque on the statue was donated by Gloria Byce, chief executive officer of Innersource Inc.

It is a statue of St. Fiacre, the patron saint of gardeners, who was born in Ireland and raised in a monastery where he became a monk. He learned much about herbal medicine and was known for his reputation for cures.

He moved to France for more solitude and raised gardens of herbs used for medicinal and culinary purposes along with floral arrangements. He died in 670 A.D

St. Fiacre also is known as the patron saint of taxi drivers. In 17th-century Paris, the innkeeper of the Hotel St. Fiacre came up with the idea of renting coaches. The sign at the inn featured an image of St. Fiacre and, in time, the coaches became known as fiacres.

In 1999 in Kildare, Ireland, a garden was designed in his honor.

The club also dedicated many hours to cleaning up the statue.

Fellows Riverside Gardens are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, Tuesday through Sunday, at 123 McKinley Ave.

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