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Most years, the Public Gardens open on the long weekend in May and close on Remembrance Day, November 11, limiting public access to the city’s most beautiful park. Given the good weather that Haligonians often enjoy in early spring and late fall, shouldn’t the Gardens be open as weather permits?

Last year and this year, the winter and spring were so mild that city workers were able to work in the Gardens on most days. I can see into the Gardens from where I live, and the grounds were ready long ago. Why the public is being kept out?

I would like to suggest that instead of following the calendar for opening and closing the Gardens, the city do this: close the Gardens with the first snowfall after November 11 and open the Gardens as soon as conditions permit, probably April 1 and no later than May 1.

A visitor from Vancouver told me last week he couldn’t believe the Gardens weren’t open. He remarked that Vancouverites love their gardens and parks as much as we do ours, and in a similar situation, they would pressure the city for increased accessibility. We can do the same. Everyone who loves the Public Gardens should phone (902 490-4000 or 1 800 835-6428), write (P.O. Box 1749, Halifax, Nova Scotia B3J 3A5), or e-mail ( the city to encourage this change.

By Heather Thompson

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