On a recent, sunny afternoon, 20 area elementary school students and a group of Asbury resident members of the Gaithersburg Beloved Community Initiative headed off for an afternoon of fun and discovery at the U.S. Botanic Garden on the National Mall.
We listened to a brief docent overview and then set forth with lots of energy on a scavenger hunt.
(See photos of our trip below. Photos: Laurel Fraser.)
The students were mesmerized by the holiday model trains chugging through structures created from different plant materials. Each of the 45 structures depicted such U.S. national park or historic sites as Denali Mountain in Alaska’s Denali National Park and the Devil’s Tower National Monument in Wyoming. The one that caused the most excitement in the children was the model of Dr. Martin Luther King’s birth home in Atlanta.
As interested as the children were in the trains, they were totally fascinated by the plants in various locales such as the desert, the jungle, and wetlands. Of course, the adults were, too!
However, even more exciting to the adults – who volunteer in a weekly mentoring program and other Beloved Community events at Asbury Methodist Village – was the fascination of the young explorers.
Would you like to learn more about the Beloved Community Initiative's outreach efforts and mission to increase understanding between different ages, races and cultures? Visit the Gaithersburg Beloved Community Initiative page on our website.