Jul. 18—ROCKPORT — Secluded gardens will be unveiled during the annual "Rockport in Bloom" garden tour this Saturday, July 23, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The tour of "hidden gems" is organized by the Rockport Garden Club, a volunteer group which tends to the town's many gardens as well as other civic and environmental efforts.
During the tour of 13 gardens, held rain or shine, visitors can stroll from one end of the downtown seaside village to the other, taking in the ocean views, shops and art galleries.
"Then they can experience the thrill of being admitted to a private, hidden garden tucked away behind charming coastal homes," said Sherri Casey, vice president of the Rockport Garden Club. "I never imagined the magical gardens that lay behind so many homes. I continue to be impressed each year with the gardens that reside in Rockport and the homeowners that put so much work into making Rockport such a beautiful place to live."
Also, local artists will be planted in each garden, creating works on canvas en plein air. As a courtesy, the paintings will be available for viewing on the "Rockport In Bloom" webpage following the tour. Information about how to purchase directly from the artists also will be available on the web page. Or attendees can purchase "hot off the easel" directly from the individual artist on the day of the tour.
"You can see that during the isolation of COVID(-19), our gardeners devoted their hearts and souls to the therapeutic power of gardening," said Lory Ragnio, co-chair of the tour. "We're looking for a garden tour experience that will be a journey through an outdoor gallery of living art compositions that will brighten your day and lighten your mood."
Luncheon will be available at the American Legion gazebo on Back Beach and served by volunteers.
"The garden tour is a labor of love that involves more than 100 members of the club. As our major fundraiser, it finances our scholarships, town gardens and many other philanthropic endeavors. This tour is an expression of our dedication to the Rockport community. We welcome all to visit our beautiful gardens and to spend a wonderful day in Rockport," said Pam Lane, club president.
Rockport's town gardens will complement the route to each private garden on the tour, noted Casey.
The route is walkable, but free CATA trolleys are available to ferry ticketed attendees from the free parking area near the Rockport transfer station to the downtown.
Tickets are $30 and can be purchased via the website at rockportgardenclub.org, up to and including the day of the tour, or at John Tarr Shop, 49 Main St. until Wednesday. On the day of the tour, tickets will be available at Barletta Park on Mount Pleasant Street and the Rockport Police Station, 168 Main St. Luncheon vouchers and merchandise also are available.