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Crystal Beach Poppy Project

Poppy Banner by the Graffiti Grannies

Submitted by Christine Whelan

Nov.11, 2021, VOL. 3 ISSUE 6

The Graffiti Grannie’s latest project, the poppy banner, was installed at the Crystal Beach Cenotaph, located at Farr and Ridgeway Roads, by the Fort Erie Fire Department, on Monday, November 1st.

Angela Stadelman and Jane Seaborne-Davies, known as the Graffiti Grannies, began their mission to beautify Crystal Beach in 2017 when the community celebrated Canada’s 150th anniversary.

Since then, the two-lifetime beachers have completed several projects, beautifying walls throughout the village.

Angela commented, “Jane and I were inspired by the Niagara Poppy Project and in August, met with Suzanne Moase, the curator at Niagara Museum. Suzanne donated a bag of poppies and an old tennis court net to get us started.”

Susan Simms, President of the  Stick’N Needles Guild of Niagara, designed the knitting pattern and also provided the crochet pattern that was distributed to the volunteers. 

Their Inspiration:  The Niagara Poppy Project

On Remembrance Day, Niagara Falls commemorated those who protected our freedoms with The Poppy Project. The project was a collaborative community art project by the Niagara Falls History Museum and Stick’N Needles..

In 2020, they reached out to the public and asked them to knit and crochet poppies to be included in a large-scale art installation. The response was overwhelming, with over 11,000 poppy donations coming from every province in Canada, twenty-five different states in the United States, as well as Denmark and New Zealand.

Heartfelt letters accompanied many poppies, dedicating words of love and thanks to family members who fought and died in the numerous wars that have affected our world — fighting for our freedom. (niagarafallsmuseums.ca)

Bringing A Little Of The Project To Crystal Beach

“With the help of Karen Dobson, we sewed the poppies onto the net. Marianne Matthews of Royal Canadian Legion Branch 230 and her many volunteers were very enthusiastic in providing us space and support for this project.”

In looking ahead, Angela expressed, “The Crystal Beach Poppy Project has been so well received within the community that I’m sure it will continue to grow over the next years and be even more amazing.”

Many of the poppies came from Friends of Yarn (Facebook). “I would also like to mention how lucky we are to have the timely opening of the Creative Knitting Shop in Ridgeway who are great supporters of all things yarn.”

On Facebook, Jane Seaborne-Davies expressed, “I want to say a big thank you to Danielle Winters who was one of our ex-cadets who donated $50 to purchase supplies for this project so that those who wanted to participate and cannot afford the wool could become a part of our history by crocheting or knitting poppies.”

In looking ahead, Jane added, “We will be continuing this project over the winter so that next year we can drape both sides.”

The banner will be on display until November 12th.

There are no upcoming events at this time.